Principal Associations Comment on Administrator Evaluations

In a recently prepared document, the National Association of Elementary School Principals and the National Association of Secondary School Principals have gone on record to support modifications in the evaluation documentation for building principals at all levels.  This report was developed with support from a 2004 report, How Leadership Influences Student Learning by the Wallace Foundation, a national philanthropic organization which seeks to improve education and enrichment for disadvantaged children, and supports the focus on education leadership with two essential statements:

  • Leadership is second only teachers among influences on student success
  • Importance of leadership is most significant in schools with greatest needs

Currently, the research suggests that administrator evaluation processes/documents do not reflect the existing principal standards or proven practices. Many instruments used for administrator evaluation are not technically sound or useful for improving principal performance.  As important as principals are to successful education programs as supported by the Wallace Foundation report, the process for assessment of principal performance is in need of change.  Currently, test scores are being used increasingly in states and school divisions for documenting administrator performance.  Considering the fact that building principals are at a level directly removed from test administration, can this standard be realistically used for administrator evaluation?

The 2011 collaboration by NAESP and NASSP was instrumental in creating a joint Principal Evaluation Committee to develop a framework for principal evaluation.  This “framework” would be used as a guide for improving professional practice which should lead to increased student learning.  Six key domains of leadership responsibility were defined to serve as the benchmarks for administrator evaluation:

  1. Professional Growth and Learning
  2. Student Growth and Achievement
  3. School Planning and Progress
  4. School Culture
  5. Professional Qualities and Instructional Leadership
  6. Stakeholder Support and Engagement

To review the document for this proposal, please go to: