School leadership centered on social justice requires a commitment to continuous improvement, innovation, and transformation. Researchers agree that school principals are second only to teachers in their impact on student achievement and play a critical role in sustaining an inclusive school culture and activating school reform efforts. As the needs of TK–12 schools expand in response to ever-shifting demographics, health and safety concerns, and the persistent inequitable outcomes for underrepresented populations, leader preparation with an explicit focus on equity and social justice is essential.
Now more than ever, our schools need justice-oriented leaders who are prepared to meet the myriad of challenges facing students, families, and teachers. We need leaders who know how to create conditions where teachers feel valued and supported to continually grow in their practice and where student learning and well-being is the top priority in our work every day. Leaders who take up this charge create and sustain a collaborative school culture and hold the unwavering belief that we can do better by our students. This work is not easy, but it has the potential to change educational outcomes for generations to come.