If you are interested in applying or in nominating a candidate for the National Distinguished Principals award, please complete the nomination form (see button below) along with an attached letter (not to exceed two pages) identifying the strengths and skills that you feel make the candidate eligible for this award. This application must be received by the West Virginia Association of Elementary/Middle School Principals by Monday, February 24, 2020.

Please return completed
Nomination Application to
Executive Director
Mickey Blackwell,
Box 4785, Charleston, WV 25364

Applications must be received by the West Virginia Association of Elementary/Middle School Principals by Friday, February 24, 2020.  Forward questions to mblackwell@wvprincipals.org or
text 304-610-6680.

NAESP National Distinguished Principal

Nominating Criteria for 2020

Recognize a Great Principal Today!

The West Virginia Association of Elementary/Middle School Principals (WVAEMSP) is proud to announce nominations are open for the annual National Distinguished Principals (NDP) Award. This award is designed to recognize the outstanding leadership of active principals. The program will honor one elementary and one middle school principal who displays extraordinary leadership, commitment to their students and staff, service to their communities, and contributions to the overall profession, including professional associations. The nomination form is attached.

All eligible public school principals are encouraged to participate. Nominations will be accepted electronically until Monday, February 24, 2020. Qualified nominees will then receive an electronic application packet which is due to the WVAEMSP Executive Director by Monday, March 23, 2020.

The National Distinguished Principals (NDP) program was established in 1984 to recognize elementary and middle level principals who set high standards for instruction, student achievement, character, and climate for the students, families, and staffs in their learning communities. The program was based on three fundamental ideas:
• Children’s attitudes towards learning and their perceptions of themselves as lifelong learners are established in the beginning school years.
• The scope and quality of children’s educational experiences are determined primarily by the school principal, who establishes, through the important work of teachers and the support of caring parents, the character of a particular school’s program.
• The dedication and enthusiasm of the outstanding principals who guide children’s early education experiences should be acknowledged to both show appreciation for their work as well as to allow them to serve as models for others in the field.

Public school elementary and middle-level principals are nominated by peers in their state, and final selections are made by a committee from the WVAEMSP. The WVAEMSP has recognized NDP Principals since 1985.

Criteria established by NAESP/WVAEMSP require that the individual is a practicing principal with at least five years’ experience in the principalship, who plans to continue as a practicing principal. The principal must demonstrate evidence of outstanding contributions to the community and to the education profession and should lead a school:

The nominee:

  • Is a member of the National Association of Elementary Principals (NAESP) and the WVAEMSP at the time of the award.
  • Is an active elementary or middle school principal in which a commitment to excellence is clearly evident.
  • Has been an active principal for at least five years.
  • Will remain in active service in a position of school leadership during the school year in which he/she will serve as NDP.
  • Shows a strong commitment to the principalship through active membership in professional associations.
  • Is respected by students, colleagues, parents, and the community at large.
  • Assumes an active role in his/her community, distinguishing himself/herself as a leader in civic, religious, or humanitarian activities.
  • Shows strong educational leadership by setting high expectations for school staff and students, and maintains an orderly, purposeful learning environment.

Please forward any questions and all nominations to:

Mickey Blackwell, Ed.D.
Executive Director
West Virginia Association of Elementary/Middle School Principals
Box 4785
Charleston, WV, 25364