Leadership effectiveness targets the need for leadership on campus to exhibit characteristics and skills known to promote and implement positive educational change. Of the elements proven to have the greatest degree of impact on student achievement, school leadership is second only to classroom instruction . Examples of successful school turnaround efforts without effective leadership are rare (Leithwood, Louis, Anderson, & Wahlstrom, 2004).

Supporting Components

Key strategies establish the foundation for each Critical Success Factor. The activities supporting each CSF must be thoughtfully developed by stakeholders to ensure each campus initiative is successful. The strategies noted here, when implemented correctly, can support the development of each Critical Success Factor. While the following is not a definitive list, the evidence-based components provided here are proven to show a high rate of success.

  • On-going Job Embedded Professional Development
  • Operational Flexibility
  • Resource/Data Utilization

ESEA Turnaround Principle: Provide Strong Leadership

Providing strong leadership by (1) reviewing the performance of the current principal; (2) either replacing the principal if such a change is necessary to ensure strong and effective leadership, or demonstrating to the SEA that the current principal has a record in improving achievement and has the ability to lead the turnaround effort; and (3) providing the principal with the operational flexibility in the areas of the scheduling, staff, curriculum, and budget.


Web pages


  • Principal’s Time Use and School Effectiveness
    School principals have complex jobs. To better understand the work lives of principals, this study uses observational time use data for all high school principals in one district. This article examines the relationship between the time principals spent on different types of activities and school outcomes, including student achievement, teacher and parent assessments of the school, and teacher satisfaction.
  • School Leaders Matter
    Measuring the impact of effective principals – This study provides new evidence on the importance of school leadership by estimating individual principals’ contributions to growth in student achievement. The approach is quite similar to studies that measure teachers’ “value added” to student achievement, except that the calculation is applied to the entire school.


  • 7 Habits of Highly Effective People -Stephen Covey
  • Drive – Daniel Pink
  • The Skillful Leader: Confronting Mediocre Teaching – Platt, Tripp, Ogden, and Fraser
  • Classroom Instruction that Works – Robert Marzano
  • Built to Change – Lawler and Worley
  • Cognitive Coaching – Costa & Garmston
  • The 360 Degree Leader – John Maxwell
  • Crucial Conversations – Patterson, Grenny, McMillan, Switzler
  • Emotional Intelligence – Daniel Coleman
  • Learning By Doing – Dufour