School principals and headmasters serve as the head of their school and are ultimately responsible for the performance of teachers, students, and other employees. To perform the job successfully, principals must have teaching, managerial, and planning skills, as well as the ability to communicate the school’s performance and needs to school board members and other leaders within the school district. Additionally, they must communicate the needs, expectations and requirements of the school to its employees and students they also help develop and implement plans to meet these standards. They must monitor the school's budget and make regular financial reports to their supervisor(s). They also supervise disciplinary actions for students, teachers, and other staff as necessary. In the public, they also serve as a representative for the school and its administrators.
To become school principals, individuals must have strong experience as educators; they generally are promoted after demonstrating their abilities in the classroom as teachers for a substantial period of time. As teachers, they must continue their education in developing administrative skills, as well as demonstrate a thorough understanding of changing educational methods and practices. A master’s degree in education, school administration, or another relevant field is generally required as well. Principals generally are promoted from a vice principal position serving underneath a school principal. Here, they perform many of the same duties as the principal and fill in for school’s head principal when they are absent.
Principal / Headmaster Tasks
- Ensure compliance with all laws, implement emergency plans, and establish safety regulations.
- Hire, supervise, and evaluate school teaching staff, administrative staff, kitchen staff, and custodians.
- Establish academic and behavioral standards for students and administer student discipline.
- Oversee school administration, curriculum, programs, services, and resources.
- Communicate school goals and needs to parents, the community, and the school board.