Jan Smith, principal of L.C. Kerr Elementary School, recently completed the Distinguished Leadership Program (DLP), a year-long leadership development program for practicing school principals designed and provided by the North Carolina Principals and Assistant Principal’s Association in partnership with the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction and UNC-LearnNC.
The Distinguished Leadership in Practice Program (DLP) uses a non-traditional professional development model that is aligned to the performance evaluation standards adopted by the wtate Board of Education for North Carolina’s school leaders. This unique cohort-based program is designed to limit principals’ time away from their schools by allowing them to attend face-to-face sessions once every other month while accessing online assignments, materials and coaching in between face-to-face sessions. Principals engage in a series of authentic activities throughout the year-long experience that are designed to build the capacity of their schools and their own capacity as “Distinguished” school leaders.
“The leadership of the school principal is by far one of the most important factors in school quality,” said Dr. Shirley Prince, NCPAPA Executive Director. “By completing this very rigorous program, our DLP graduates have demonstrated their commitment to continuous improvement by working to improve their leadership skills as they simultaneously improve their schools. We are proud to include them in the ranks of successful DLP completers.”
This program is offered in three locations — Wilmington, Raleigh and Charlotte — in order to serve in all eight regions of the state.
The North Carolina Principals and Assistant Principals’ Association (NCPAPA), in existence since 1976, is the preeminent organization and state voice for principals, assistant principals and aspiring school leaders. NCPAPA represents 5,000 members from across the state and serves as the state’s principal affiliate of the N.C. Association of School Administrators (NCASA), the National Association of Elementary School Principals (NAESP), and the National Association of Secondary School Principals (NASSP).