Aspiring Principal LEAD

Great schools require great leadership. HCS needs a strong leadership pipeline to ensure every school has an effective and impactful administrator, both now and in the future. Research has shown an effective principal is the key factor in both student achievement and retention of great teachers. With succession plans and a strong leadership pipeline, HCS can staff schools and our central office with effective leaders. The Aspiring Principal LEAD program is designed to identify strong candidates for future principal positions and provide them valuable training in the key areas they need most so that they are ready to assume principal roles in the future.

Training and Practicum of the Program:

  • Throughout the year, candidates will engage in monthly, full-day professional learning sessions, facilitated by internal and external experts, that focus on key aspects of the HCS Principal Leadership Standards:
    • Equity & Ethics
    • Clear and Compelling Mission, Vision & Focus
    • Instructional Leadership
    • Balanced Leadership & Capacity Building
    • Involve Families and Communities
    • Culture of Care Within a Purposeful Community
  • Candidates will also work on a school-based problem of practice in conjunction with a professional development team that includes school and district leaders
  •  Candidates will receive job-embedded coaching and engage in mentoring with a mentor principal

Eligibility Criteria:

  • Current HCS assistant principal
  • Hold an ILL or ILL-P administrator license for the state of Tennessee
  • Strong record of job performance as a school leader
  • Prepared to pursue a principalship in 1-3 years

Application Components for Initial Screening:

  • Current, up-to-date resume
  • Recommendations from the applicant’s current principal and one other school or district leader  (recommendation forms will be sent by the Talent team)
  • Personal letter of interest that demonstrates an understanding of the responsibilities of a principal, describes the motivation for pursuing the role,  and provides specific evidence about the skills and competencies that make the applicant a good fit for the role 
  • Most recent Project COACH summative evaluation rubric (from T-Eval)
  • Observation and Feedback task (this task will be embedded in the application) 

Selection Process:

  • Phase 1: Screening - Each applicant's application components will be screened by multiple district leaders using a screening rubric. 
  • Phase 2: Interview - Applicants with satisfactory screening scores will be invited to interview with a panel of district leaders. 
  • Phase 3: Selection - Candidates will be selected for the program based on a combination of their screening and interview scores. The number of candidates selected for a new LEAD cohort is based on multiple factors and may change from year to year.

Aspiring Principal LEAD (2023-2024)
The application for the 2024-2025 cohort of Aspiring Principal LEAD will be available in iCims from March 18 - April 7, 2024. The application flyer for AP LEAD can be found here

If you are interested in applying, we encourage you to attend one of our virtual LEAD application information sessions. Please register here for one of the following information sessions: 
- December 12th - 3:30 and 5:00 pm
- December 14th - 3:30 and 5:00 pm
- December 19th - 3:30 and 5:00 pm
- January 4th - 4:00

LEAD Application Resource: We encourage all applicants to review our LEAD Application Resource for troubleshooting and support during the application process.

Have questions about Aspiring Principal LEAD? Email [email protected].