High Point Leadership Academy, through strong collaboration with its partners, prepares candidates to become strong school leaders who will transform high-needs schools into learning environments that result in high performance for all students.
The School of Education is excited about a new innovative program for aspiring principals made possible by a competitive grant established by the North Carolina General Assembly. In order to elevate promising educators in our public schools by transforming the preparation of school leaders across the state, principal preparation programs under this grant are designed to graduate candidates after one year of intense groundwork that allows them to earn an alternative license in school leadership. The program begins January 1, 2016. High Point University was one of five entities awarded the two-year $1.78 million grant.
High Point Leadership Academy will enroll 15 principal candidates during year one from its seven partnering school districts: Cabarrus County Schools, Elkin City Schools, Guilford County Schools, Mt. Airy City Schools, Newton-Conover City Schools, Rutherford County Schools, and Yadkin County Schools. With a goal designed to transform low-performing schools into learning environments that result in high performance for all students, the High Point Leadership Academy is committed to providing a rigorous, research-based curriculum, developed by working collaboratively with district personnel and affiliates such as the Center for Creative Leadership, the BB&T Leadership Institute and the Piedmont Triad Educational Consortium. Candidates will participate in authentic experiences and experiential learning that will challenge their thinking and build the skills required for transformational leadership. Assessment, continuous feedback, and self-reflection will support growth and success. Additional critical components include executive coaches and a five-month full time clinical experience with supervising site principals, selected for their effective and successful leadership.
Graduates of the Academy will earn the M.Ed. degree in Educational Leadership from High Point University and the North Carolina School Administrator: Principal license upon completion of the program. The license qualifies them for the positions of assistant principal and principal within North Carolina.
Please contact Dr. Barbara Zwadyk with any questions.
Cohort I Candidates Assume Principal Roles Early
We are very proud of all of our Academy students and particularly excited for those who have assumed administrative positions this semester.
Mrs. Meredith Boger Ms. Leah Hayes
Assistant Principal Assistant Principal
Johnson Street Global Newton-Conover Middle
Guilford County Schools Newton-Conover City Schools
Mr. Levi Goins Mr. Chris Burnette
Assistant Principal Assistant Principal
Mount Airy Middle Weaver Academy Performing
Mount Airy City Schools & Visual Arts/Advanced Technology
Click here for press release Guilford County Schools
The following article recently ran in the High Point Enterprise:
Program Aims to Fill Pipeline for School Administrators
August 2017 — The Leadership Academy at High Point University’s School of Education is opening the pipeline for principals to flow into High Point schools. Meredith Boger, one of the first 15 teachers selected for the principal preparation program, was hired as assistant principal at Johnson Street Global Studies even before the end of the program’s summer term last week. “I just want to do more to help teachers be effective in the classroom and find that joy in teaching again,” Boger said. “I see my role as helping them grow professionally so they can help our students grow. I’m a fixer by nature. I wanted to be one of the ones to make a change.”
The N.C. General Assembly awarded a two-year $1.78 million principal preparation grant to develop leaders who would be able to transform high-need schools. The grant, managed by the N.C. Alliance for School Leadership Development, funded $833,000 for 2016-2017 and $893,000 for 2017-2018 to begin the Leadership Academy this year. The grants cover education costs and participants’ salaries for five months while candidates earn graduate credits. As one of five universities to receive the grant, HPU partnered with Guilford County Schools and six other school districts to prepare 41 principal candidates over a two-year period.
The N.C. General Assembly awarded a two-year $1.78 million principal preparation grant to develop leaders who would be able to transform high-need schools. The grant, managed by the N.C. Alliance for School Leadership Development, funded $833,000 for 2016-2017 and $893,000 for 2017-2018 to begin the Leadership Academy this year. The grants cover education costs and participants’ salaries for five months while candidates earn graduate credits. “Our pipeline of principals is drying up, so that’s what the funding is about,” said Barbara Zwadyk, project manager for leadership studies and an associate professor in HPU school of education. The graduate-level program normally takes two years but was condensed into one year with participants serving a full-time clinical internship for a semester, she said. The 15 teachers in the first cohort that started in January begin internships this month. The second cohort of 15 teachers started in May and will begin internships in January. Both cohorts will graduate in May 2018 with a master’s of education degree in school administration and licensing to be a school administrator. “As they’re coming out of this program, they will be prepared to deal with the challenges of schools that need them the most,” said Amy Holcombe, a GCS staff member and adjunct HPU professor for this program. “It is a grant-funded opportunity that will allow us to prepare educators to be leaders of highly impacted schools. They’re getting hands-on experiences learning from master principals and each other, because of the cohort model. They are learning from experts in the field, across school districts in the Central Carolina Region and our partners with the Center for Creative Leadership.”
Jairo Lopez, another member of the first cohort, began his internship as assistant principal at Ferndale Middle School this summer. Lopez had considered administration after teaching Spanish for more than eight years at the Middle College at GTCC – High Point. Through the leadership academy, Lopez learned about legal aspects and developing school culture. “The program is geared specifically to targeting low-income, high-needs schools so it’s giving us the basics of things you need as an administrator,” Lopez said. “The focus was on helping those schools with the highest needs and where the students might need a little extra push.”
Jennifer Cooper will intern this fall at Johnson Street Global Studies, where she has worked as a curriculum facilitator for three years. For the spring semester, she will intern at Oak View Elementary. As part of the May cohort, she studied three courses during the summer term on organizational management, creating a data culture and a culture within a school. “More than anything it is figuring out how those different pieces fit together to create that culture, because one aspect drives the next,” Cooper said. “This was a very rigorous process just to become a part of the High Point Leadership Academy and I think that the fact that the candidates were identified on the front-end will benefit our community. I’m thrilled that I’m going to be placed at Oak View. I’m a resident of High Point so I believe in connecting the school to the greater community. That’s part of the reasons I want to be an administrator, to impact the community in which I live. Lopez also spoke of school culture extending beyond the campus. “Of course you want to start with teachers, staff, parents and students but then it’s that whole ‘it takes a village to raise a child’ attitude,” Lopez said. “I know that’s one of the things we’re attempting to do at Ferndale, to reach out more into the community and develop those relationships. Zwadyk described the Leadership Academy’s alternative licensure program as intense and its first two cohorts of teachers as “a remarkable group of bright, energetic and dedicated learners who are intent on providing the best for children and the staff which they lead.”
HPU is pleased to welcome the first cohort of principal candidates to the Leadership Academy. Beginning in January 2017, these individuals begin their journey to earning an M.Ed. in Educational Leadership.
HPU is pleased to welcome the second cohort of principal candidates to the Leadership Academy. Beginning in May 2017, these individuals start their journey to earning an M.Ed. in Educational Leadership.
Leadership Collaboration – Cohorts I and II
- The Instructional Leadership Institute
- STEM Leadership
- Organizational Management & Legal Issues for 21st Century Schools