How To Become an Assistant Principal

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In 2008, education administrators held about 445,400 jobs; out of which about 58,900 were held by child care and preschool administrators, about 230,600 by secondary and elementary school administrators and 124,600 by post-secondary administrators. Assistant principals, principals, academic deans, office administrators and preschool directors have previously held teaching positions before gaining an administrative position in an institution.

Job description

  • An assistant principal helps the principal with overall administration of the school or college. Depending on their qualification and enhanced skills and certification, their next step is to become the principal;
  • With the beginning of site-based management, assistant principals are responsible for academic planning of new curriculum, dealing with school-community relations, evaluating teachers, etc;
  • Mainly responsible for ordering textbooks and supplies along with scheduling student classes;
  • Coordinate custodial, cafeteria, transportation and other support services;
  • Also responsible for managing social and recreational programs, attendance problems and student discipline, health and safety matters within the campus;
  • Counseling students on educational, personal or vocational matters.


  1. A Master’s degree in educational leadership or education administration;
  2. Some central office administrators and principals possess a specialized or a doctorate degree in education administration in most public schools, while some assistant principals and principals hold just a bachelor’s degree in most private schools.
  3. Educational qualifications for administrators of child care centers and preschools differ with the State of employment and the setting of the program. Most education degree programs include courses in school law, school leadership, budgeting and school finance, curriculum evaluation and development, data analysis and research design, politics in counseling and education.
  4. The Educational Leadership Constituent Council (ELCC) and The National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE) are certification programs designed specifically for elementary and secondary school administrators. It is helpful to fulfill licensure requirements although completion of accredited program may not be required.
  5. Start with getting appropriate education and training to become an assistant principal; complete a graduate degree, certification such as educational leadership and gain at least 3 years of working knowledge in any educational institution.
  6. Choosing these electives in college will help you gather necessary knowledge and qualification to become an assistant principal; training and education, personnel and human resources, administration and management, English Language, public safety and security, law and government, psychology, sociology and anthropology, economics and accounting, communications and media, etc.

Brush up on your communication skills, written and verbal; reasoning and problem solving, good listening skills, understanding and asking questions, people management skills, budget management skills, etc. Remember, as an assistant principal you need to be approachable and able to solve any kind of issues.


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