Assistant principals play a critical role in schools across the state, but there are very few professional development opportunities geared just toward them. That’s why UNCG’s School of Education developed a unique conference specifically for assistant principals.

More than 115 assistant principals from across the state are planning to attend the third annual UNCG Assistant Principal Conference March 10 and 11, hosted by Dr. Gay Citty and UNCG’s Principal Fellows each year. The five master’s students are working full-time as administrative interns across the Piedmont Triad this year, and planning the conference is one of their big assignments of the year.

“Sometimes the assistant principal remains in the shadows. They are so instrumental in helping and being a part of the administrative team,” said Dr. Gay Citty, an adjunct professor in UNCG’s Educational Leadership and Cultural Foundations Department. “We’re trying to provide them with unique professional development.”

There will be discussions on everything from education law to technology resources, and assistant principals will have a chance to hear from local superintendents, UNCG professors and North Carolina Assistant Principal of the Year, Jason Jowers. Assistant principals will also have the opportunity to learn more about the path to becoming a principal.

“We want these administrators to feel special. The theme for the conference is ‘Rolling Out the Red Carpet for Assistant Principals, and we will celebrate them at this conference.” Citty said.

Not only is the conference beneficial for the assistant principals in attendance, it’s also a valuable learning tool for UNCG’s principal fellows.

“Being an integral part of the creation and implementation of the Assistant Principal Conference provided these Principal Fellow interns with a unique leadership experience.  Determining the sessions that would most benefit assistant principals allows them to reflect on their own practice as future administrators,” City said. “From the planning that began last September to analyzing the feedback from the exit survey in the weeks following the conference, they are leading and learning.”