In August, NASSP released results from the NASSP Survey of America’s School Leaders and High School Students. Designed by school leaders and students, this nationally representative survey explores their opinions on the challenges of leading and learning at school as well as their thoughts on mental health, school safety, and how to better meet the needs of all learners.

While the survey findings paint a picture of schools facing enormous challenges nationwide, statistics alone cannot tell the full story. Check out these news accounts highlighting the voices of our members whose own experiences bring the survey results to life:

Finding #1: One out of two school leaders claim their stress level is so high they are considering a career change or retirement.

Louisiana Principal of the Year Ronnie Harvey, Jr. and Wisconsin Principal of the Year Anu Ebbe spoke to The Washington Post about widespread educator shortages and challenges of supporting students that contribute to school leader stress.

Finding #2: The majority of students (73%) report they are generally satisfied at their school, but there is an opportunity to involve them more in school planning and policies.

“Find a way to make the large school community a small one.” That’s a tip from NASSP board member Kim Greer in U.S. News & World Report offering advice for high school freshmen with NASSP’s Community Engagement Lead Jeff Sherrill.

Finding #3: Three-quarters of school leaders (73%) and students (74%) report they needed help with their mental or emotional health last year.

NASSP board member Derrick Lawson spoke with The Washington Post about how he meets his students’ rising mental health needs. After the story ran, U.S. Senator Alex Padilla’s office reached out to Lawson letting him know they read the article and will be working to secure more mental health resources for schools.

Finding #4: The majority of school leaders (70%) and students (51%) report they have personally been threatened or attacked, physically or verbally during the past year.

NASSP’s Principal Recovery Network, a group of current and former school leaders who have experienced school shootings, authored the Guide to Recovery to support their peers who must lead their school communities in the wake of shooting tragedies. The guide has appeared in over 200 news stories, including this must-see NBC story.

Finding #5: School leaders and students agree that more work needs to be done when it comes to meeting the needs of underserved students.

National Honor Society alumna Alyssa Speelman has made it her mission to help her community by bringing awareness to the Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women’s movement. Her efforts earned her the $10,625 Service scholarship. KTVQ has the story.

Finding #6: School leaders and students believe there are some benefits to pandemic practices that help meet students’ unique needs.

In an in-depth interview with The 74 Million, 2020 Arizona Assistant Principal of the Year Beth Lehr shares how the pandemic changed the day-to-day of education in our country, for good or ill.

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