High school principal job description

Have you ever been a coach or an instructor in your spare time and find yourself enjoying the job? Are you passionate about education and the school system? Are you currently involved in a leadership role in an extracurricular activity and enjoy overseeing the operation of a group? Have you always wondered if there was an alternate career path in the school system other than that of a teacher? Perhaps you should consider a career as a high school principal.
As you may have already guessed, since a high school principal works in the academic system, you will be required to not only get an undergraduate degree from a college, but you will also require a masters in education degree afterwards in order to become a principal. These professionals are compensated fairly based on the amount of education they have to go through in order to be in this field. According to the US Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median wage in 2012 is approximately $87,000.1 There is a slight difference in salary depending on the school district in which the principal works. Furthermore, the availability of jobs for a principal depends on the population growth. In some cities where there are more children enrolled in the school system, there will be a higher demand for principals.
A successful high school principal requires both academic knowledge and field experience. As a result, while students can go straight to a masters degree following the graduation of their undergraduate degree from teaching, it is not usually recommended. Most teaching students will end up taking a job as a teacher and work for a number of years before considering going back to school to be an administrative professional such as a principal. Furthermore, just because you have completed your masters, it doesn’t mean that there will be a job opening available for a principal. Most principals start off working in various districts as a vice principal before being promoted into the role. Unlike teaching positions, there is only one principal at each school so there are far less job openings. This is likely the reason why most principals are older in age compared to some of the teachers.
What is a day in life of a principal like? Unlike teachers, most principals do not have a class to teach. Their primary responsibility is to make sure that the school is running smoothly. This means meetings with the school district’s superintendents, building managers, finance managers, etc. Principals have to also work with educational regulators to meet academic requirements set forth by the school district. They also have to meet with the teachers to make sure that there is nothing out of the ordinary when it comes to the students. Principals are also the spokespeople of their schools, so if anything goes wrong, they are held accountable by the public and even the school district. So they have to be great problem solvers and need to be able to manage any issues which arise from the school.
For more information on a career path to become a high school principals, please contact your career counselor or even schedule an appointment with your principal to learn more.
1. High school principals. US Bureau of Labor Statistics. US Department of Labor. http://www.bls.gov/ooh/management/elementary-middle-and-high-school-principals.htm

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