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Leading Pre-K-3 Learning Communities:
Competencies for Effective Principal Practice

As the federal role expands to support increased state investments in school-based prekindergarten programs, NAESP has released an updated, principal competency guide: Leading Pre-K-3 Learning Communities: Competencies for Effective Principal Practice. Developed by a panel of leading practitioners, this standards document defines new competencies, and outlines a practical approach to high-quality early childhood education that is critical to laying a strong foundation for learning for young children from age three to grade three, or Pre-K-3.

Leading Pre-K-3 Learning Communities encompasses what principals believe: 

  • Learning starts early
  • Supporting children to be prepared when they start school is essential to helping them get on the right track
  • Developing appropriate skills, knowledge and dispositions is fundamental to children’s future success
  • Getting children on grade level by the time they leave third grade, particularly in reading and math, is essential to ensuring they graduate from high school ready for college, careers and life

This groundbreaking work sets forth a strategy to help principals develop and expand their instructional leadership with a child-centered focus and acquire the practical skills necessary to address the academic, social, emotional and physical development needs of all young children. View the executive summary.

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