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Published October 1, 2019

Micro-credential addresses training need for local education leaders

Program provides skills for principals to improve low-performing schools

There are a number of schools in Western New York and throughout the state that are struggling to meet state education standards. To help address this concern, Corrie Stone-Johnson, associate professor from the Department of Educational Leadership and Policy, along with department colleagues Thomas Ramming, Melinda Lemke and Aliza Husain, are developing a university-based micro-credentials program for principals seeking the skills to improve these schools.

These specialized New York State credentials will help train local and state education leaders to turnaround schools designated as Struggling, as well as Comprehensive Support and Improvement schools. Any person holding a New York State School Building Leader certificate with at least three years of experience as a principal or assistant principal in a public school in New York State will be eligible to enroll in the micro-credentials program.

According to the National Education Association, micro-credentials are a competency-based digital form of certification. They can be issued for formal and informal professional learning experiences that support educators' developing skills and acquiring knowledge to improve professional practice that supports student success. In short, micro-credentials are like mini-degrees or certifications in a specific topic area.

This micro-credential program will develop a set of four to six modules focused on the knowledge, skills and competencies needed to significantly increase student achievement and improve or turnaround low-performing schools, or those designated as Comprehensive Support and Improvement schools. The successful completion of the required modules will result in the New York State micro-credential.

“This program gives principals in our region the skills to improve schools that are not meeting state education standards,” says Stone-Johnson. “We’re excited that the program has the potential to positively impact these struggling schools in Western New York, as well as throughout the state.”

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