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Summer Principals Academy

The Education Leadership Program in the Department of Organization and Leadership

Welcome to SPA NYC


The Summer Principals Academy at Teachers College, Columbia University is a transformative graduate program committed to promoting equity and excellence in education and overcoming the gap in educational access and achievement between the most and least advantaged groups in our country.  To achieve this goal, our aspiring school leaders are encouraged to construct transforming possibilities for student learning, school design, social equity, and opportunity.  While some principal preparation programs prepare school leaders who perpetuate schools as they currently exist, SPA strives to prepare leaders who will create the innovative schools that our nation and students need.

Through the Summer Principals Academy experience, future leaders conceptualize transforming possibilities with the support of their cohort and our incomparable instructors and coaches. Leadership development is fostered through an integrated set of experiences that include the exploration of both theoretical, best practice knowledge and problem-based projects and field-based experiences.  Consequently, our students pursue coursework and skill development over two consecutive summers and apply what they've acquired in an intensive internship experience at their school communities during the intervening year. The result is a rich, complex, and adaptive learning environment that provides support and encouragement to cohort participants as they seek to become the authors and agents of educational transformation.‌


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