Advocacy/Legislation to benefit elementary schools and their students.

Federal Budget Resources Page

Federal Budget Resources Page

Committee for Education Funding

NAESP is a member of the Committee for Education Funding (CEF), the largest and oldest education coalition in the nation. CEF’s mission is to promote robust financial support for our nation’s education system and represents 114 education associations, institutions, agencies and organizations whose interests range from preschool to postgraduate education in both private and public systems.


NAESP Funding Priorities

NAESP is a vocal advocate for elementary principals in the budget and appropriations process.  Outlined below are our priorities in advocating for more funding in the areas that matter to elementary principals the most.

Funding priorities for FY 2017 include:

Overview of Education Appropriations

Overview of Education Appropriations

Labor-HHS-Education Appropriations Subcommittee Allocations

The Senate and the House each have an Appropriations Committee and a Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education Subcommittee.  The committee must distribute funds from their assigned subcommittee number, sometimes referred

Advocacy on the Federal Budget

Advocacy on the Federal Budget

On behalf of the nation’s Pre-K-8 principals, NAESP advocates for increased federal investments in education to support programs that benefit schools. While the U.S. Department of Education’s budget comprises only 2% of all federal expenditures, federal education funds have a significant impact on the ability of schools to meet the learning needs of students. NAESP's advocacy leads to increasing funding for comprehensive recruitment, training and professional development for principals as part of the federal budget.

NAESP Rallies Principals on ESEA; Unveils School Improvement Research Arm

Media Advisory                                                             
Kaylen Tucker, NAESP

Principals Gather in Nation’s Capital to Demand More Support for School Leaders

Media Advisory                                                             
Kaylen Tucker, NAESP

The Power of the Elementary Principal’s Voice

Pennsylvania Principal Melissa Patschke is attending NAESP’s Federal Relations Conference this week and will be sharing her experience in the Principals’ Office.

What we, as school principals, do each day to support schools, children, and families is valuable information for those influencing critical legislative decisions that promise to, and historically have, impacted our schools. Each principal’s story, whether it is related to progress, boundaries, or celebrations, deserves to be shared.

Survey: Definitions of Effective Principals

In September, the Department of Education proposed definitions of "effective" and "highly effective" principals—a scant 200 words that, if enacted, could be used to determine which districts and schools are eligible for federal discretionary education grants. NAESP strongly opposes the definitions, which represent another attempt to hold principals accountable for outcomes far behind their control.

More important, our members oppose them as well. In a survey the Association conducted in September, 70 percent of NAESP members say it is inappropriate to define principal effectiveness in significant measure as "at least one grade level in an academic year" of student growth. NAESP heard you loud and clear, and we expressed your opposition in a formal letter to the Department of Education focused on four concerns:

  • The definitions diminish state and local authority to set criteria for evaluating principals;
  • The fail to address the intricate nature of a principal's job;
  • They do not adequately account for school circumstances; and
  • They still rely too heavily on student standardized test scores.

Download the full results of survey, and as always, please direct any questions to

It's Time for a Serious Discussion: What Works in Schools?

“Education reform” is a concept educators are well familiar with and not ashamed to take on. In schools across the country, educators are continually assessing. They assess student progress. They assess curriculum and educational materials. They assess the validity and usefulness of data and tests. And, yes, they even assess their own successes and failures.

Education as an Economic Issue

President Obama is hardly the first to make the argument that the education of America’s youth is of vital economic importance. Since coming to office, Obama has made education reform—centered on innovation and competitiveness—a cornerstone of his administration’s focus.

National Principals Month Is Here

Let’s hear it for principals! The U.S. Senate passed S. Res 607, a resolution drafted by NAESP and the National Association of Secondary School Principals to designate October 2010 as National Principals Month. Sen. Byron Dorgan, D-North Dakota, introduced the resolution, which honors elementary, middle, and high school principals for their passion and dedication to students across the country.

U.S. Economy Depends on a Better Education System

In a recent interview on NBC's "Today" show, President Barack Obama said the United States is falling behind other developed nations in math and science education and that is hurting U.S. economic competitiveness. Obama suggested that the U.S. schools need to get rid of the worst performing teachers and expand the school year (Read more).

Senate Bill Introduced to Help Principals Bridge Achievement Gap

Sen. Mark Udall, D-Colo., introduced a bill yesterday that creates a grant program to provide principals with professional development and mentoring programs to strengthen their knowledge of early childhood education. The purpose of the bill is to help principals create a seamless continuum of learning experiences from pre-K through grade 3 by providing a delivery system to train principals how to provide appropriate early learning environments.

There’s Still Hope for Emergency Aid

This week marks the final congressional session before the Independence Day recess. When Congress returns to Washington the week of July 12, there will be less than 50 legislative days remaining in the calendar year. There continues to be a growing belief in education policy circles that neither the ESEA reauthorization nor the fiscal year 2011 education appropriations bill (Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education) will be completed before the end of 2010.

Save Education Jobs, Speak Up for Kids

Secretary Arne Duncan estimates that as many as 300,000 educators could lose their jobs before the start of the next school year due to drastic deficits in state and local school budgets across the country. Join thousands of your colleagues in calling for Congress to save education jobs!

Virginia Principal Testifies About Transformational Leadership

Susan E. Bridges, principal of A.G. Richardson Elementary School in Culpeper, Virginia, testified on May 19 before the House Committee on Education & Labor about the tools principals need to successfully turn schools around. Bridges recounted her personal experience in using data and developing a sense of community to overcome the challenges of redistricting.
“I firmly believe that I have been successful in leading change in my school because of my hard-working and dedicated staff and because of the support and flexibility in decision-making that I have been given by the school district’s administration,” Bridges said. “To be effective, all principals require the authority and autonomy to make necessary changes in their school buildings. This means principals must be able to arrange building staff and resources to address the needs of students, and to work collaboratively with colleagues both inside and outside of the school to identify the tools needed to sustain change and growth.” 
Watch the live feed of the hearing and let us know your thoughts about turnaround leadership.

Duncan’s Call for Turnaround Principals

Secretary of Education Arne Duncan wants to turn around 5,000 low-performing schools in the next five years, and he is looking to principals for help.
Duncan recently addressed attendees of NAESP’s Annual Convention and Exposition via video, and he challenged them to help him turn around low-performing schools. “Principals are always the catalyst for change in schools and fundamental to the implementation of sustainable school reforms,” he said. “Consider being a turnaround principal. Think about moving to a struggling school in your district.”
According to Duncan, the U.S. Department of Education is distributing $4 billion for school turnaround programs through Title I School Improvement Grants, and the department has asked Congress for an additional $900 million for a reauthorized school turnaround grants program.
Duncan made it clear that he believes strong school leadership is a critical component of school improvement, and he discussed some of the steps the Department of Education is taking to support principals. “For the first time, we are dedicating resources specifically for school leader professional development,” Duncan said. “Historically our department has underinvested in that area, and we want to do much, much better.”
NAESP’s advocacy team is currently pushing for the inclusion of two policy proposals in the reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, both of which would strengthen professional development programs for principals. Read about these policy proposals on NAESP’s Advocacy Web page and watch Duncan’s speech online.

Federal Update: Weigh in on ESEA Blueprint

Today, the U.S. Department of Education released its blueprint for the reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act to the U.S. Congress. This document serves as the Obama administration’s formal request for changes to the federal education law currently known as No Child Left Behind.
We encourage all principals to review this 35-page document. Congress is ultimately responsible for crafting and reauthorizing the ESEA, however the administration's blueprint serves as their formal request for substantive changes to the law and is therefore an important first step in what will likely be a lengthy reauthorization.
NAESP wants to hear from you! Please submit your comments either by e-mailing or leaving your comments below.