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The state of principals in North Carolina

Princeville Elementary Principal Annette Walker walks children into school on their first day back since Hurricane Matthew. (Photo credit: Liz Bell/EducationNC)

Until recently, principals in North Carolina were 50th out of all the states in the nation and Washington, D.C., for principal pay. Meanwhile, the state is training high-quality principals slower than the demand for them in North Carolina schools. But the state has taken steps in the last few sessions of the General Assembly to address these problems. 

It started with a program to transform principal preparation and continued with a pay bump and revamped principal salary schedule. 

The prior principal pay schedule was based on years of experience and the number of teachers overseen by a principal. The new schedule focuses on student population and academic growth. Basically, depending on how many students are in a school, a principal gets a base salary. If the students, collectively, meet academic growth, the principal can get a higher salary. If the students exceed growth, the principal gets an even higher salary. Below is the new principal salary schedule. 

In this edition of EdTalk, host Alex Granados talks with Shirley Prince, executive director of the North Carolina Principal and Assistant Principals’ Association, about the state of principals in North Carolina. 

Editor’s Note: Shirley Prince is a member of EducationNC’s Board of Directors. 


A look at North Carolina education issues and policy.