Principal Residency




International Schools
It's interesting to me to realize that most of the things I wrote down and asked for in my papers during the PRN program have already manifestied in my life. As I clarified what I really believe, I was able t see what I still need to learn. The mission of City-As-School shocked me because it seemed as if it was something I had written in one of the many papers this year. When the principal handed me a copy of the transcript between Myles Horton and Paulo Frere during my interview, I knew I was on the right track towards finding the community of people who share a similar vision. It was also important to me that they wish to expand their vision through advocacy and grassroots organization.

From a large scale my vision includes authentic collaboration, a messy and organic process that results in school needs being met and greater flexbility when responding to changes. My leadership style I hope will be transformational, compassionate, courageous and clear. I understand the school is a gem of the community, and a center that represents key community spokespeople, the students. As a leader, I trust that I will learn the nuts and bolts of how to enter a budget line. What I have learned from the PRN program is how to shape school culture through emphasis on the history of the school, celebrations, traditions and rituals. I have learned subtleties of the school community , such as the fact that staff members carry many informal roles. I have come to understand that leaders are "boundary spanners" in that they must find the nexus of a multitude of levels of society, and work with this nexus to make decisions that will continue to grow the school.

In addition, I have had the time to clarify the organize the amazing array of ideas I have learned from my mentors such as how to get parents more involved, how to give students a voice, and the ideas behind shared decision making. As a teacher, I wondered about how a school will adapt to the evolution of technology plan. This is a planning skill so valuable, I have already used in my personal life and taught to others in my family.

Upon exploration, I discovered that the portifolio process is by far the best way to evaluate and supervise teachers. While writing a paper, I solidified what I had learned into a detailed supervision and evaluation plan. After many conversations at the principal residency in New Hampshire, I also came to the decision that allowing structured choices in professional development is the most equitable way to provide for the needs of a diverse staff. Through PRN, it was possible to support what I already knew as a teacher, that project based learning is effective based on current brain research and that teachers can move from Instructional Approach 1 to Instructional Approach 4 with guidance.

Althought at first I was intimidated by taking school finance (I'm not that good at spreadsheets), I quickly came to realize that it is a very understandable process. I realized that I can use budgeting to accomplish my goals. Essentially, I already had learned many things about budgeting from my former principals, and with a little research into the Chancellors Regulations I could make a comprehensive plan.

Lastly, PRN helped me to clarify my strengths and weaknesses as a leader and come to the conclusion that in the end "I am what I am". I knew what I believed before PRN and after the program I was able to translate what I believed into a vision.
Submitted by Tamara Parks, International High School Network, Ny, NY.

mission_hillMission Hill School Principal - PRN Graduate,

sequence_7I am eager to join the journey of expanding an innovative, competency-based approach to graduate level instruction for effective leadership the Principal Residency Network and New England Program. My previous experience as a Mentor Principal in 2005 was enough to convince me that this program is the best way to identify and properly prepare future school leaders in a rigorous and visionary fashion. I would like to be considered for the Director’s position of the growing Nashua cohort and be a colleague on your instructional staff.

My present role as a principal of a large, urban high school feeds my desire to discover, uncover and develop the traits and characteristics of effective school leaders. My recent good fortune of being named one of three national finalists for the NASSP/MetLife National Principal of the Year award opened my eyes to my ability to motivate and inspire others in our profession. I believe I could be a steward of New England College’s growing tradition of preparing next generation school leaders and use my talent to help expand and improve an already successful program such as the PRN.

I have a professional and trusting relationship with Tom McGuire, Mark Taft and Paul Richmond, managing partners of LOFT PRN, and I am excited to once again be affiliated with their integrity and that of New England College. I look forward to a conversation about our future together in shaping tomorrow’s school leaders.


David M. Ryan
Nashua North High School Principal
Titan Drive - Nashua, NH

Jim Callan, senior lecturer in the Education Department at the National University of Ireland, visited to learn more about the Principals Residency Network.

Here is part of his assessment: The range of tasks that one has to attend to in this school principals' programme is impressive, as is the specificity with regard to the school leadership tasks participants have to attend to. The depth of engagement required of individual participants is demanding. There is a sense of this work requiring total commitment, engaging one from morning to night, for week to full week. The work and role of school leader in this programme, as it emerges in the programme intent, is rooted in a form of missionary undertaking.
The sense that leadership is not simply a job but a way of life, with purpose and dedication, and not just to the school but to the local community, gives this programme a certain distinctiveness so necessary for schools and their role in the emerging complex society which surrounds them. Driven by basis principles of democratic and moral living, the schoolhouse is seen as a place where values of integrity, honesty, social cohesion, openness, and partnership are realized. This, it is implied, brings its own demands on leadership for the schoolhouse.


Coupled with the above is the programme's sense of engaging the whole person's capacities and their potential for growth: what the person thinks and does can be further developed and honed to fuller realization for the enrichment of schools as learning communities. Significantly, its work is premised on the belief that such capacities are enhanced and developed through reflective experiential processes. In the case of this programme such processes are highly structured and specific, but in a facilitative way to enable personal and professional growth. Detailed guidelines are provided, and these generate, as I have witnessed, high expectations with regard to participants having a focused and committed engagement in the programme, leading to an enriched understanding of and engagement in school leadership tasks.

Jim Callan
Senior Lecturer, Education Department
National University of Ireland
Maynooth, Ireland

GymThe Principals Residency Network program allowed me to have a year-long experience in the day to day admisistration of a wonderful small school. With the support of a mentor, as well as a cohort group, I was able to research and develop a program with lasting impact for the school. In this day and age, when the face of education is changing throughout the country, the Principals Residency Network is an excellent alternative for those educators looking to effect a more system-wide change.
Lyle Holiday
PRN Graduate

My name is Aaron Pope and I am the Assistant Principal of the Epsom Central School, in Epsom New Hampshire. I have recently graduated from PRN this past May and I have been fortunate to go through the program with Tom and Mark as the program leaders

The monthly PRN meetings were well run, organized and gave both the mentors and the aspiring principals a place to learn how to become a better administrator. The depth of conversations that were achieved at these meetings made for incredible real world lessons. Tom and Mark's ability to listen and give advice on the situations that each of us faced throughout our residency proved invaluable.

As a new administrator, I feel that Tom, Mark and PRN have prepared me to the challenges that a school administrator will face. The PRN has provided me with real world experiences that no classroom course could ever offer. I whole heartedly support the Principal Residency Network and Tom and Mark's ability to prepare the future administrators of our school. I look forward to working with Tom and Mark in the future

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact me

Aaron Pope
Assistant Principal
Epsom Central School
Epsom, NH 03234


PRN is the most rewarding professional experience I have had in over twenty years of public school administration. Being a Mentor Principal provided an opportunity for me to examine my own professional practice through daily reflection with the Aspiring
Mike Friel
PRN Mentor Principal