Last updated: April 22. 2014 9:46AM - 643 Views

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One new principal and three new assistant principals in Boone County recently graduated from the leadership academy.

Principal Garth Mock, Van Junior Senior High; Assistant Principal Shana Alderman, Sherman Junior High; Assistant Principal, Christopher Bulger, Scott High; and Assistant Principal Angela Hill, Nellis Elementary all graduated last week.

The West Virginia Center for Professional Development honored 145 new principals and assistant principals who graduated from the 2013 - 2014 Principals’ Leadership Academy (PLA) for New Principals at the Waterfront Place Hotel in Morgantown.

The graduation concluded the yearlong Academy that is required of new school administrators in the state.

The session included a presentation from U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of West Virginia R. Booth Goodwin who shared an update on the collaboration between education and law enforcement to promote school safety.

PLA for New Principals is a state-mandated professional development experience for West Virginia’s new principals and assistant principals.

WVCPD provides three, two-day sessions to assist administrators as they transition into their roles as instructional leaders.

Participants also have ongoing access to team leaders and colleagues through an online wiki designed specifically for their use.

Teams address critical issues such as school culture, student achievement and school safety, among others.

As part of the Academy requirements, participants completed an in-depth study of an issue at his or her school and will share the findings with their peers.

This year marks the first year for full implementation of Governor Earl Ray Tomblin’s education reforms.

PLA provides school administrators with professional development to ensure principals understand the new laws and how they should be applied.

The policies affect teacher evaluation, school improvement and other key areas. This guidance is important because the number of new principals continues to grow each year.

Five years ago there were approximately 95 graduates; however, this year the number has grown significantly with more than 145 principals graduating.

In addition to the update from U.S. Attorney Booth Goodwin, the Academy also included a presentation from Mike Patrick, operations director of the Boy Scouts of America Summit Group and a closing keynote from Dr. Mickey Blackwell, executive director, West Virginia Department of Education, Office of School Improvement.

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