We are just two months out from what promises to be an extraordinary event for the nation’s school leaders—the first-ever National Principals Conference. 

I have attended NASSP conferences consistently for 30-plus years, since my own days as an assistant principal and principal. But the level of enthusiasm among school leaders for this conference is unprecedented.

NASSP has evolved the conference experience during the past few years to make the programming ever more relevant and responsive to principals’ needs. We have carefully constructed content strands and tiers within the strands—all developed with the astute guidance of an advisory committee of preK–12 principals—to encourage school leaders to delve deeply into topics. The content will be top-notch (read all about it at www.principalsconference.org), but that is not the primary source of enthusiasm.

Our keynote speakers reflect a depth of understanding of school leaders’ work, with a consistent theme of how to preserve education as a more human and connected endeavor in an era of digital automation. With thought leaders from social science and education, school leaders will find ways to connect their work to the larger global and national trends affecting the lives of students. Those talks will provoke new ideas in a fresh context. 

Still, that is not the primary source of excitement. In the interest of brevity, I’ll cut the suspense: The source of the excitement is … well … you

This year, NASSP joined forces with the National Association of Elementary School Principals to expand and diversify the audience of school leaders in attendance at the National Principals Conference. As a result, principals will connect with their peers across the K–12 continuum—a prospect that principals are finding especially enticing. Our high-quality content aside, you create the value of the conference for yourselves and for one another, and you recognize that a more diverse audience can only serve to enhance that value.

So, know that I share your excitement for the National Principals Conference. We are delighted to partner with you on your journey of professional development, and we are honored to contribute to it. I’ll see you in Philadelphia, July 9–11, 2017.

JoAnn Bartoletti 
Executive Director, NASSP