WEST VIRGINIA BOARD OF EDUCATION
POLICY NUMBER AND TITLE: 5500.03 Qualities, Proficiencies and Leadership Skills for
PUBLIC COMMENT PERIOD ENDS: February 18, 1997 ADOPTED: March 13, 1997
Senate Bill 300 requires the State Board to approve and promulgate rules regarding the minimum
qualities, proficiencies, and skills that will be required of all principals. The legislation creates
the Principals' Standards Advisory Council to assist the State Board with the development of
The purpose of this policy is to establish rules regarding the specific qualities, proficiencies, and
skills that will be required of principals after January 1, 1997. This policy was developed in
consultation with the Principals' Academy Standards Advisory Council, and it is to be used in the
development of the curriculum for the Principals' Academy. The Center for Professional
Development will develop and communicate to the State Board the curriculum for the Principals'
Strong leadership by principals is necessary for good schools and higher levels of student
achievement. These rules will be used by the Center for Professional Development to develop
the curriculum for the Principals' Academy and by other organizations and institutions in
preparation and professional development programs for principals.
$500,000.00 was appropriated by the Legislature to the Center for Professional Development for
1996-97 to conduct the Principals' Academy.
BOARD OF EDUCATION
AND LEADERSHIP SKILLS FOR PRINCIPALS (5500.03)
1.1. Scope - The policy establishes the minimum qualities, proficiencies, and skills required of
all principals after January 1, 1997.
1.2. Authority - W.Va. Constitution, Article XII, Section 2; W.Va. Code §§18-2-5, 18A-3-2c,
18A-3A-1, and 18A-3A-2b.
1.3. Filing Date - March 18, 1997.
1.4. Effective Date - April 17, 1997.
2.1. These rules set forth the minimum qualities, proficiencies and leadership skills required of
principals after January 1, 1997.
3.1. W.Va. Code §18A-1-1 defines "principal" as "The professional educator who as agent of
the board of education has responsibility for the supervision, management and control of a school
or schools within the guidelines established by said board. The major area of such responsibility
shall be in the general supervision of all the school and all school activities involving pupils,
teachers and other school personnel."
3.1.1. For purposes of this policy, a "principal" is defined as any individual employed as a
principal, an assistant principal, or a director or assistant director of a vocational/technical
§126-147-4. Qualities, proficiencies, and skills.
4.1. The following qualities, proficiencies and leadership skills are required of principals after
January 1, 1997:
4.1.1. Vision: The ability to facilitate the development, articulation, and implementation of a
vision and goals that are shared and supported by the school community. This ability is
a. The school vision reflects high standards for student learning and the belief that all students
b. The school is driven by an alignment of national, state and school goals.
c. The vision, goals and expectations, and implementation plan are clearly communicated to
staff, parents, students and community members.
d. A consensus regarding vision is developed among all stakeholders (staff, parents, students,
e. A clearly articulated implementation plan, containing objectives and strategies to achieve the
vision and goals, is developed.
f. Vision, goals and implementation plans are regularly monitored, evaluated and revised.
4.1.2. School Culture/Instruction: The ability to advocate, nurture, and sustain the development
of a school culture and instructional program that is conducive to student learning and staff
professional development. This ability is demonstrated when:
a. Student learning is viewed as the fundamental purpose for education.
b. A culture of high expectations is evident for self, student, and staff performance.
c. Staff and students are treated with courtesy, fairness, dignity and mutual respect.
d. Student and staff accomplishments are recognized and celebrated.
e. Relationships are built through a nurturing environment for staff and students.
f. Technology is effectively used in promoting student learning and staff professional growth.
g. A variety of approaches to learning is available to all students.
h. Curricular programs are designed, implemented, evaluated and refined on a continuing basis.
i. Curriculum decisions are based on research, expertise of teachers, and recognized promising
j. The importance of career selection is evident in curriculum and instruction.
k. Multiple sources of information regarding performance are used to assess student learning and
to foster program improvement.
l. Student assessment establishes high performance standards.
m. The principal serves as a mentor and coach for staff.
n. Personnel evaluation is used as a means to promote staff growth and including coaching and
o. Professional development promotes a focus on student learning consistent with the school
vision and goals.
p. Student problem areas are reviewed and recommendations are made for appropriate
4.1.3. Management/Environment: The ability to ensure management of the organization,
operations, and resources for a safe, efficient, and effective learning environment. This ability is
a. Knowledge of learning, teaching, and student development is used to make informed
b. Continuous improvement strategies are evident in all aspects of the school environment.
c. Operational procedures are designed and managed to maximize opportunities for successful
d. Technology is used effectively to find, retrieve, and analyze the appropriate data to guide
long-range planning and daily practice.
e. A collaborative, team building approach to organize the school is in place .
f. Faculty senate is used to make a positive impact on instructional and management decisions.
strength of diversity is promoted.
h. A process for resolving conflict is established and implemented.
i. Staff selection is a collaborative process.
j. The school plant, equipment, and support system operates safely, efficiently and effectively.
k. Laws, policies and regulations are observed in maintaining a safe, supportive environment.
l. Confidentiality and privacy of school records are maintained.
m. A variety of sources of information including data, experience, expertise, vision and goals, is
used to make decisions.
n. Prioritization and decisiveness are evident in decision-making by the principal.
o. Problems are identified and resolved in a timely manner.
p. Project management is effective and efficient.
q. Strategic planning provides opportunities for longitudinal data collection and revision of
r. Resources and funds are used appropriately and wisely.
s. Time is managed to maximize attainment of organizational goals.
t. Delegation of authority is used to the benefit of staff and administration.
u. Staff empowerment is coupled with responsibility and accountability.
v. Consensus is used as a means of management.
4.1.4. Community: The ability to collaborate with families and community members, respond to
diverse community interests and needs, and mobilize community resources. This ability is
a. Families and other stakeholders are involved in school decision-making.
b. Families are partners in the education of their children.
c. Diversity is recognized and valued.
d. The school and community serve one another as resources.
e. Partnerships are established with area businesses, institutions of higher education, and
community groups to strengthen programs and support goal attainment.
f. Available community resources are secured to help the school solve problems and achieve
g. Local school improvement councils make effective decisions.
h. The establishment and implementation of a comprehensive program of community relations
informs and involves the public in all aspects of the school.
i. Students and parents are viewed as clients.
j. Excellent communication skills: (written, verbal, listening, interpretative, conferencing and
grammatical), are used by the principal.
k. Meetings are chaired effectively.
l. Consensus is used as a decision-making tool.
4.1.5. Professional: The ability to act with integrity, fairness and in an ethical manner. This
ability is demonstrated by the principal when:
a. The highest personal and professional values are reflected and required.
b. Integrity and ethical behaviors are reflected and required.
c. Dedication through commitment and involvement is displayed.
d. A positive attitude and pride in the school and community are evidenced in his/her serving as
a role model in the community.
e. The legitimate authority of others is recognized and reflected.
f. Legal and contractual obligations are fulfilled.
g. Laws and procedures are applied fairly, wisely, and consistently.
h. The influence of his/her office is used constructively and productively in the service of
students and their families.
i. Reflective practice is used to maximize effectiveness.
j. A commitment to life-long learning and professional renewal is practiced.
k. Current research in professional practice is applied.
4.1.6. Systems: The ability to understand, respond to, and influence the large political, social,
economical, cultural, and legal context as it relates to the school. This ability is demonstrated
a. Active involvement and communication with the larger community are a high priority.
b. Relationships with community leaders are identified and nurtured.
c. System thinking to ensure that decisions reflect input from all stakeholders is used.
d. A local, national and global perspective in decision making is evidenced.
e. A pioneer spirit as a courageous entrepreneur, willing to take measured risks, is evidenced.
f. A professional image is conveyed.
g. Democratic principles in day-to-day operations are evidenced.
h. Federal, state and county policies are implemented and observed.
5.1. All professional development for principals shall address the qualities, proficiencies and
leadership skills set forth in these rules, including developing and delivering the curriculum for
the Principals' Academy.
5.2. All approved preparation programs for principals shall address the qualities, proficiencies
and leadership skills set forth in these rules.
5.3. The Center for Professional Development shall provide principals with sustained
opportunities through the Principals' Academy to develop the specific qualities, proficiencies and
leadership skills required pursuant to these rules.
5.3.1. The Center for Professional Development shall consider best practices as established by
research in developing and delivering the curriculum of the Principal's Academy.
§126-147-6. Attendance at the Principals' Academy.
6.1. After the first day of January 1997 every principal shall complete, subject to the provisions
of this section, the Principals' Academy at least every four years.
6.1.1. All persons assigned as principals for the first time in a West Virginia school after the first
day of March 1996 shall complete the Principals' Academy. If the Principals' Academy is
scheduled to being within ninety days from the date of assignment, such person may postpone
attendance until the next scheduled training through the academy.
6.1.2. All principals of schools that are designated probationary status or seriously impaired (in
accordance with W.Va. Code §18-2E-5) shall complete the next regularly scheduled Principals'
Academy following the date of such designation unless the training is to begin within thirty days.
In such instance, the principal may postpone attendance until the next regularly scheduled
6.1.3. All principals who are subject to an improvement plan in accordance with W.Va. Code
§18A-2-12 and Policy 5310 shall complete the next regularly scheduled Principals' Academy
unless the training is to begin within thirty days of the date of the improvement plan. In such
instance, the principal may postpone attendance until the next regularly scheduled Principals'
6.1.4. All principals who transfer to a school with a significantly different grade configuration
shall complete the next regularly scheduled Principals' Academy unless the Principals' Academy
is to begin within ninety days from the date the principal is transferred. In such instance, the
principal may postpone attendance until the next regularly scheduled Principals' Academy.
6.1.5. Attendance at the Principals' Academy shall be subject to the availability of funding from
the legislature and other sources. If funds are insufficient to provide for the total cost, the
academy shall admit those persons described in sections 6.1.1.-6.1.4. according to the priority in
which they are listed. If funds are insufficient to provide for all persons in one or more sections
6.1.1.-6.1.4., the Center for Professional Development is authorized to determine which persons
shall and shall not be admitted. The Center for Professional Development shall make every
effort to ensure that every principal attends at least once every four years after the first day of
6.2. The West Virginia Department of Education shall establish and maintain a system to record
the progress of each person required to complete training through the academy and shall
periodically advise such persons of their status.
6.3. Waiver of Attendance- Any person who desires relief from the requirements of this policy
may apply in writing to the West Virginia Board of Education for a waiver.
6.3.1. A standard waiver application form for the Principals' Academy shall be developed by the
West Virginia Department of Education. The waiver application must be signed by the county
6.3.2. Upon showing of reasonable cause why relief should be granted, the West Virginia Board
of Education may grant a waiver to postpone attendance from the academy for a period of one
year upon such terms and conditions as it deems appropriate.
6.4. Principals attending the Academy who are not under contract during the period in which the
Academy is in session will receive a stipend provided funding is allocated by the legislature.
6.5. The West Virginia Department of Education shall work collaboratively with the West
Virginia Center for Professional Development to maintain: accurate records of eligibility;
priority status for attendance; record of attendance; status of waiver requests; and a system of
notification of principals of their status in regard to attendance.
6.6. W.Va. Code §18A-3-2c provides that any person who fails or refuses to complete the Principals' Academy as required and who fails to obtain a waiver, shall be ineligible to be employed as, or serve in the capacity of, a principal, an assistant principal, or a director or assistant director of a vocational/technical school.