NELP Standards Approved: How This Affects You

The National Educational Leadership Preparation standards, which guide education leader preparation, have been approved. Here’s what you need to know.
November 2018, Volume 42, Issue 3

The National Educational Leadership Preparation (NELP) standards, which guide education leader preparation, have been approved by the National Policy Board for Educational Administration and the Council for the Accreditation for Educator Preparation (CAEP). The NELP preparation standards officially replaced the Educational Leadership Constituent Council standards in 2018.

What does this mean for you? Leadership preparation providers and states are urged to adopt the standards for both building and district leaders and to make use of the new NELP Companion Guide.

About NELP Standards

A committee of educators, leaders, and researchers developed the NELP standards, which are research-based and aligned to the Professional Standards for Educational Leaders (PSEL). The PSEL standards define educational leadership broadly, but the NELP standards specify what novice leaders and program graduates should know and be able to do as a result of completing a high-quality educational leadership preparation program.

  • The NELP standards include criteria on:
  • Continuous improvement;
  • Ethics and professional norms;
  • Equity and culturally responsive leadership;
  • Instructional leadership;
  • Community engagement;
  • Developing professional capacity; and
  • Management.

Using the New NELP Standards

These new standards are made up of three parts: building standards, district standards, and a companion guide.

The NELP Building Standards and NELP District Standards address the most critical knowledge and skills areas for beginning educational leaders at the building and district levels. The standards align to national leadership practice standards and are supported by research on effective leadership practice, input from key stakeholder communities, and the four CAEP principles:

  1. The Learner and Learning;
  2. Content;
  3. Instructional Practice; and
  4. Professional Responsibility.

The NELP Companion Guide is designed to assist faculty members preparing for program accreditation review under the NELP Standards.

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