According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 23,200 new principal positions will be added between 2010 and 2020. And as a profession, the current field of 236,100 K–12 principals averages about 1–5 years of experience in a related field. That is a pretty green crop of leaders charged with everything from maintaining school budgets, staffing, and making decisions about student data. Most principals say their learning happens on the job, and for new principals that can be a steep learning curve. This issue will tap both veteran and newly minted school leaders for guidance on how to avoid common missteps, develop a leader identity, set and enact priorities, stay positive, and find and sustain support networks. What do you wish you had known as a new principal?
ASCD Express is looking for short, 600–1,000-word essays on the theme “What New Principals Need.” Guidelines for submissions are here; please send us your submissions to firstname.lastname@example.org by May 15, 2014.