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Monday, January 10, 2011

Why the Principalship? Making the Leap from the Classroom

In this book, Dale Brubaker, professor emeritus, and Misti Williams, clinical assistant professor in the Department of Educational Leadership and Cultural Foundations, guide teachers who want to make the leap from the classroom to administration. The book is especially timely as UNCG recently launched a new initiative, the Piedmont Triad Leadership Academy, thanks to a $6 million grant from the State of North Carolina, to identify and train aspiring principals for high-need schools.

The book has received high praise from Susan Jacoby, former education writer for the Washington Post and the New York Times:

Anyone who ever attended a school overseen by a bad principal ought to be able to answer the question posed in the title of Why the Principalship? Gifted teachers form the most powerful memories of education for students, but the principal is responsible for creating the atmosphere in which the best teachers either flourish or wither. A great principal is, above all, the school's head teacher. The only thing I would add to this lively, informative, encouraging book is that an excellent principal ought to keep one foot--or at least a toe--in the classroom. At a time when education has never been more crucial to the future of our nation, and public schools are under attack from all sides, there has never been a greater need for school administrators who understand that their job is to be leaders true to the Latin root of the word educate, which means to 'lead out.'"