Vice principals hold an important role in educational administration. They are visible in the hallways and meetings and they represent the principal and interests of the school board on a daily basis. They exist to help monitor and execute school policy and procedures, and to help keep everything running smoothly. Learn more about what a vice principal is, the daily responsibilities and requirements, and the career path to entering this field in your home state.
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What Is a Vice Principal?
Depending on the size of the school, there could be a single vice principal or several. Serving in this capacity requires strong collaboration, communication, leadership and mentoring skills. You also must be confident and dedicated, with a strong drive and determination to succeed as well as being able to make tough decisions on a moment’s notice under stressful situations.
The primary duty of the vice principal is to assist the principal of the school in the daily operations and administration of the institution. They will, in this capacity, create and administer policies and procedures, attend and schedule meetings, discipline and counsel students, and act as mentor and collaborator to teachers in the school.
What Are the Requirements of Vice Principals?
Vice principals must care deeply about the educational process and about the students whose safety and education they are charged with safeguarding. They must also be good, non-judgmental listeners, culturally sensitive, and have the ability to act as a counselor when needed.
This job is rewarding, but can be stressful and requires long hours and a broad variety of job duties ranging from basic clerical and administrative work to counseling, interpersonal teamwork and leadership duties. You may be called upon to hire staff, interview parents, file reports, advise teachers and discipline students, all in the course of a day.
Becoming an Assistant Principal
Becoming an assistant principal usually occurs after one has served as a teacher for a number of years. As such, you’ll want to achieve at minimum teaching certification in your state by following state guidelines. For most, obtaining a master’s degree in education provides essential skills and knowledge in the administration of school systems.
Some assistant principals even take it a step further and obtain a doctorate, which can open still more doors in the field of education. The more education and experience you have, the more marketable you will be in any education job.
Job Outlook and Salary Expectations
According to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics, administrators in education earn, on average, around $88,580 per year. The expected job growth in this area is expected by 2024 to reach between 6% and 9%, which indicates solid security and the potential for new jobs.
Of course, since experience is essential to this job, you’ll want to start by getting certified as a teacher in your state. Take a look around our website at the certification and licensure requirements for your state, as well as the many other career paths available in the ever-expanding field of education!