The National Association of Elementary School Principals (NAESP) was founded in 1921 in Atlantic City, New Jersey. What started with 51 principals grew in the next five years to include 3,000 members. Today NAESP, headquartered in Alexandria, Virginia, represents nearly 30,000 elementary school and middle school principals.1
In the 1930’s, NAESP began publishing the National Elementary Principal, which continues today as the Principal, an award-winning magazine. Additionally, today they publish several newsletters including the Communicator, the NAESP Research Gateway, the Principal’s Bookshelf, and various leadership e-newsletters. Online, NAESP has a National Principals Resource Center highlighting current books and videos and a Promising Practices collection of successful project ideas, programs, and techniques.2
By the end of the 1930’s, NAESP began two week summer workshops to sharpen principals’ professional skills. That training continues with the NAESP Leadership Academy as well as their yearly four day National Convention, NAESP Radio, the National Mentor program, a Principal’s Help line, and Principal’s Office blog.
NAESP’s Advocacy and Government Relations team represents the needs of the nationwide network of principals with the Department of Education, the White House, and members of Congress.
NAESP collaborated with the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and Playworks to fund a 2009 Gallup survey of principals on school recesses. The survey found that “elementary school principals overwhelmingly believe recess has a positive impact not only on the development of students’ social skills, but also on achievement and learning in the classroom.”3 NAESP is also supporting Michele Obama’s Let’s Move campaign through encouraging increased play time through recesses.
In 2011, a grant program funded by Crayola and supported by NAESP, called Champion Creatively Alive Children, was offered to review innovative arts education projects that nurture "creatively alive children" and to inspire other educators nationwide with these innovative approaches to art education.4
- 1. “History.” National Association of Elementary School Principals. < http://www.naesp.org/history-1 > 21 Sep. 2010.
- 2. “Publications.” National Association of Elementary School Principals. < http://www.naesp.org/publications-0 > 21 Sep. 2010.
- 3. “Research.” National Association of Elementary School Principals. < http://www.naesp.org/research > 21 Sep. 2010.
- 4. "Champion Creatively Alive Children." National Association of Elementary School Principals. <http://www.naesp.org/champion-creatively-alive-children> 16 Aug. 2011.