School principals must continue to learn and grow in their positions, as societal demands and accountability measures keep changing. Principals have become inundated with increased responsibilities often without the benefit of continued learning opportunities. Too often, district personnel are not equipped to provide the learning needed in order to support school administrators. Learning Opportunities for Principals: Methods for Meeting the Needs of Today’s Administrators is a compilation of best practices to support principal learning to include “how to” design and implement learning prospects that will not only help school administrators, but also district personnel. Learning opportunities include communities of practice, mentoring programs, coaching, and the like. Many districts have programs in place, but they do not attain the desired results because of the program design and readiness of staff. Each chapter will explain how to design an effective program and will also outline the district’s responsibility in the learning. With effective programs, principals’ burnout will be decreased, which minimizes turnover in leadership. All of which will impact student achievement results.
Lee A. Westberry is a former school administrator with over 20 years of experience at the middle, high, and district level. Currently, she serves as an assistant professor of educational leadership, training new educators to be tomorrow’s principals.
Lee Westberry, The Citadel
Chapter 1: Building Capacity: Principals Leading Their Own Learning
Sally Zepeda, University of Georgia
Salih Cevik, University of Georgia
Seyda Yiririm, University of Georgia
Chapter 2: Communities of Practice: Leading Schools in the 21st Century
R. Stewart Mayers, Southeastern Oklahoma State University
Jennifer Anderson, Southeastern Oklahoma State University
Chapter 3: Principal Mentoring as Professional Learning
Arvin Johnson, Kennesaw State
Chapter 4: What is the District Role in Supporting the Principal?
Sherry Hoyle, Winthrop University
Chapter 5: Principal Evaluation Practices that Support Individual and Organizational Growth
Kevin Badgett, University of Texas Permian Basin
Larry G. Daniel, University of Texas Permian Basin
Chapter 6: Setting the Destination and Charting the Course: Higher Education Opportunities for
K-12 Leaders Engaged in Systems Improvement
Noelle Paufler, Clemson University
Chapter 7: Building a District Leadership Pipeline
Aaron Allen, University of North Carolina Charlotte
About the Authors
Effective school leaders are also lifelong learners. Lee Westberry’s newest edited bookLearning Opportunities for Principals: Methods for Meeting the Needs of Today’s Administrators focuses on the multifaceted nature of principal learning, recognizing the importance of preservice principal programs, mentoring, and ongoing professional development. Authors acknowledge multiple contexts in which principal learning occurs and provide practical examples of learning activities for principals as well as guidelines for appropriate principal professional development. This book provides a strong underpinning of growth for school and district leaders.
Principal professional learning has always been a critical part of staying up to date with educational best practices. Learning opportunities for educational leaders has gained a new respect over the past three years as schools maneuvered through the Covid-19 Pandemic in order to meet the needs of their students. In order for principals to stay on the cutting edge and deliver world-class results, educational leaders have to stay abreast of current trends and continue to learn. Learning Opportunities for Principals: Methods for Meeting the Needs of Today’s Administrators provides the organizational structures and best practices for principal learning to continue for the sake of the children we serve. This book should be foundational for all district leaders.
The higher we move up the ladder as educational professionals the fewer opportunities we often have for meaningful professional learning. This text is a valuable resource for any principal or district level administrator looking to grow. There are several valuable connections made which help a building leader to better define their own role while understanding the need to be flexible. The book Learning Opportunities for Principals: Methods for Meeting the Needs of Today’s Administrators provides a unique perspective on the role of a principal and how to maximize existing supports to manage the complexity of our current educational system.