NYC Leadership Academy President & CEO Dr. Nancy Gutiérrez issued the following statement today in response to a new study by RAND on principal pipelines:

“Today is an amazing day for all of us who believe in the transformative role school leaders play in the lives of young people. It is a school leader who has the power to inspire every educator in their building to expect that each child who walks through the school doors has access to excellence. It is the school leader who can create a school culture that recognizes and celebrates every child for the background and experiences they bring. It is the school leader who ensures that each young person feels comfortable going to school, feels valued as an individual, and has the opportunities and support they need to thrive.

Improving student learning exponentially requires systemic change. The RAND Corporation’s new study, Principal Pipelines, released today, makes it undeniably clear: Any school system committed to improving student learning for every child can no longer afford not to invest in school leadership pipelines. The study of six large school districts supported by the Wallace Foundation clearly documents what many of us working to support and develop principal pipelines have long believed: Leadership pipelines, if done well, are the most effective strategy a district can adopt for improving student learning. The research found that schools in districts with pipelines outperformed schools in non-pipeline districts in both reading and math. In addition, principals in pipeline districts stayed in their jobs longer, saving districts money they would otherwise lose to having to hire new school leaders, and preventing the learning loss and teacher turnover that often occurs when a principal leaves a school.

We at the NYC Leadership Academy have been proud to support the professional learning of district leaders in the districts that participated in this initiative. We thank and value partners like the New York City Department of Education, whose Chancellor Richard Carranza said of us today, ‘I can’t overemphasize the work of the NYC Leadership Academy and what they did to help us build our internal capacity. They have been critically important and continue to support us.’

We applaud each district’s incredible work and dedication, and we call on school systems across the country to take note of all that these districts have accomplished through their principal pipelines and to learn from and engage in this effort for the benefit of your own students.”

About the NYC Leadership Academy

NYC Leadership Academy is a nationally recognized nonprofit organization that builds the capacity of educational leaders, at every level of the system, to confront inequities and create the conditions necessary for all students to thrive. Since 2003, the Leadership Academy has worked with educators in 185 school districts, state education departments, and education organizations across 35 states, Washington, D.C., and internationally. The Leadership Academy was founded to develop and lead New York City’s Aspiring Principals Program and since then has supported 10 other school systems in developing their own principal preparation programs.

Contact: Jill Grossman