NEWS RELEASES 2013-14 :: NOVEMBER 1, 2013


Strong professional development for principals has received a big boost in the northeastern part of the state thanks to a grant awarded to North Carolina State University. The U.S. Department of Education has awarded NCSU a five-year, $4.7 million grant to fund the Northeast Leadership Academy (NELA) through its School Leadership Program.

"Solid leadership is essential to the success of a school and the students within," said State Superintendent June Atkinson. "The Northeast Leadership Academy has provided a remarkable level of professional development that ensures strong leaders in schools of high need. We are delighted to be able to see this continue."

This grant builds on the important work begun by NELA in 2010, largely funded initially by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and the NC Department of Public Instruction. Race to the Top funding then provided training for three NELA cohorts, the last of which will graduate in May 2014. The new USED grant will support two additional cohorts of 15 principals each to receive intense professional development. It also will provide assistance with advanced degrees and licensing.

The funding also will provide a weeklong summer intensive professional development academy for current principals (20 each summer). This will help them build instructional leadership skills for digital learning environments.

The principal program also includes individual coaching across the next academic year to help principals apply their learning at their school site. Graduates of NELA commit to working for at least three years in one of 14 school districts in the northeastern part of North Carolina.

News of the USED grant was recently reported in Education Week. You can read the article here.

About the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction:
The North Carolina Department of Public Instruction provides leadership to 115 local public school districts and 160 charter schools serving over 1.5 million students in kindergarten through high school graduation. The agency is responsible for all aspects of the state's public school system and works under the direction of the North Carolina State Board of Education.

For more information:
NCDPI Communication and Information Division, 919.807.3450.