Northwest Regional Comprehensive Center

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Leadership Qualities of Effective Principals

Research and practice confirm that there is little chance of creating and sustaining a high-quality learning environment without a skilled and committed instructional leader to shape teaching and learning. In fact, highly effective principals can increase students’ scores up to 10 percentile points on standardized tests in just one year, reduce student absences and suspensions, and improve graduation rates (Waters, Marzano, & McNulty, 2003). So, what makes these principals so effective? This research brief discusses some qualities that evidence shows matter.

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