Tougher principal selection process in the works

By: 
Rebecca Harris | Catalyst Chicago

Chicago Public Schools is embarking on yet another revamp of its controversial principal eligibility process, based on a new set of principal skills that will also play into new state-mandated principal evaluations.

The changes could take effect as soon as this summer, but it’s not clear yet what they will be. The current process includes an application with essays and an initial interview; a scenario exam; a school data case study; a more in-depth interview; and a mock teacher observation. (Those could still be part of the revamped process.)

Steve Gering, chief of the Office of Leadership Development, announced the new skills at the recent Chicago Principals and Administrators Association conference. He says the new skills are simpler than the current set of five principal competencies and 12 “success factors” that are linked to the current principal eligibility requirements.

What’s more, the current competencies – and eligibility process – “do not say a word about” family and community engagement, Gering says.

The new principal competencies are as follows:

  • “Creates professional learning systems” to improve teaching (implementing Common Core State Standards, using data analysis to improve instruction)
  • “Champions teacher excellence through a focus on continuous improvement” (this includes observing each teacher weekly and supporting teacher leadership teams)
  • “Establishes a college-going culture” among staff and students, including a strong “school brand”
  • “Empowers and motivates families and community to become engaged”
  • “Relentlessly pursues self-disciplined thinking and actions”

Read More at Catalyst Chicago

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