If teachers are the most important in-school factor for student achievement, school leaders come a close second. Indeed, school leaders may be even more important than research gives them credit for because they are an important part of creating the conditions that either attract, grow and retain teachers or drive them into isolation or out the door.
As part of our ongoing work to learn from schools that closed or dramatically narrowed achievement gaps, we have gained critical lessons on leadership from those schools’ principals.
Their belief in the capacity of all children to learn to high levels, coupled with their ability to lead instruction and manage school processes and resources, has helped drive academic achievement gains and high graduation rates in schools with large populations of children of color and children from low-income families.
We’ve documented their successes and lessons learned in various ways:
- We document the beliefs, strategies, and actions of successful leaders:
- We ask successful leaders to share their stories:
- In webinars supported by The Wallace Foundation, we provide a venue for school leaders to talk about their work with colleagues across the country
- The Wallace Foundation has also sponsored a series of videos produced by WNET to illustrate the way principals enact key practices that have been identified as effective. School Leadership in Action: Principal Practices provide professional development tools for principals and other educators.
- And how do we get more school leaders ready to get the job done? Six superintendents talk about what they’ve learned about that in a series of videos.
- Learn about two The Wallace Foundation initiatives: