Principal Mentoring

Whether you are a new principal, new career center director, new to Vermont education, an aspiring principal mentor or a member of a school community, this page offers you information about the opportunities to serve as a principal mentor or to work with a certified mentor. The work of serving as a school principal or career center director can be very isolating and at times challenging. Working with a mentor during the first two years of a school leader’s career can provide support, guidance and new learning that can go a long way toward turning challenges into new opportunities.

We hope you find the information on these pages helpful and would appreciate your comments and feedback about how we might make it even better.


Vermont Act 20
When a district hires a principal or career center director who has not been employed previously in that capacity the superintendent shall ensure that the new principal or director receives mentoring supports during at least the first two years of employment. To view Vermont title 16 Section 245  please go to
Why Mentoring Makes Sense
 Principal Standards-What Principals Should Know and Be Able To Do
  1. Lead schools in a way that places student and adult learning at the center.
  2. Set high expectations and standards for the academic, social, emotional and physical development of all students.
  3. Demand content and instruction that ensure student achievement of agreed-upon standards.
  4. Create a culture of continuous learning for adults tied to student learning and other school goals.
  5. Manage data and knowledge to inform decisions and measure progress of student, adult and school performance.
  6. Actively engage the community to create a shared responsibility for student performance and development.

Implementation Options

  • Hire trained mentors through the Vermont Principals’ Association
  • Hire private consultants with mentoring skills
  • Assign mentors from within the district who the superintendent certifies as having met all the mentor competencies and is able to mentor effectively.

Trained Mentor Benefits

  • Provide day-to-day coaching and feedback
  • Provide structured learning opportunities
  • Help shape beliefs about change, learning, relationships, and ethical leadership practices
  • Have high standards and expectations for performance
  • Provide support in developing problem solving skills
  • Offer real world leadership experiences
  • Have knowledge, time and commitment
  • Share research based competencies known to improve student learning
  • Have access to resources and a work of other trained mentors

NAESP National Mentor Certification Program

Mentor Competencies
  1. An effective mentor sets high expectations for self-development in high quality professional opportunities.
  2. An effective mentor has knowledge of and utilizes mentoring and coaching best practices.
  3. An effective mentor is active in instructional leadership.
  4. An effective mentor respects confidentiality and a code of ethics in the mentor protege relationship.
  5. An effective mentor contributes to the body of knowledge as it pertains to principal and administrative mentoring.
  6. An effective mentor fosters a culture that promotes formal and informal mentoring relationships.