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RESEARCH

Essentials

By Learning Forward
June 2019
Vol. 40, No. 3
PRINCIPAL TURNOVER Understanding and Addressing Principal Turnover: A Review of the Research National Association of Elementary School Principals and Learning Policy Institute, March 19, 2019 This report reviews 35 studies of principal turnover, a significant problem in American schools that affects teachers and students. It concludes that five major factors influence principals’ decisions to leave their jobs: 1) inadequate preparation and professional learning; 2) working conditions including lack of support and insufficient time to complete requirements; 3) low salaries that are not competitive with other jobs; 4) lack of decision-making authority; and 5) high-stakes accountability systems. The good news is that principals who are well-prepared and have supports such as mentoring are less stressed and stay longer. However, difficult working conditions and higher turnover are

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