From the Editors: Take It Up a Notch

The first things you’ll likely notice about this back-to-school issue of Principal are the extras that arrived with it, all of which feature tools and resources that can take your leadership to the next level. PRincipal Communicator, which is brought to you in partnership with the National School Public Relations Association, is a new newsletter that is designed to help you tell your school’s story, especially championing the “Power of the Principal.” You can expect to see it along with each issue of Principal, with articles that will focus on best practices related to public relations, communications, and community outreach.

Also mailed alongside this issue is the 20-page Champion Creatively Alive Children special supplement, which for the second year is generously sponsored by Crayola. The supplement is an inspiring guide for integrating arts education and includes articles about the benefits of an engaged arts program, a research review on access to arts education, tips on integrating the arts with math and literacy instruction, and strategies for building a creative leadership team. You’ll find a bonus article, “Turning Around Schools With Art,” as a Web Exclusive at Share these articles with your staff to begin a discussion about the role the arts play at your school.

The main issue of the magazine centers on an initiative that is affecting most schools in the nation: the implementation of Common Core State Standards. To start, your peers share solutions, tips, and top resources in “At the Center of the Common Core.” In addition, state leaders from the Kentucky Department of Education reveal their strategies for using technology to create leadership networks, Virginia Goatley addresses the six instructional shifts necessary to adopt English language arts standards, and Margaret J. McLaughlin focuses on how the standards will impact students with disabilities.

Finally, we want to bring your attention to this year’s special focus on the unique needs of early career principals, which reflects the Association’s dedication to supporting principals with fewer than five years of experience. In “Working Productively With Difficult and Resistant Staff,” John F. Eller and Sheila A. Eller explain eight difficult types of staff members, providing strategies for engaging them in school improvement.

Your comments are always welcome, so send us an email at to let us know what you think about this issue.

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