How to Become an Education Administrator in Wisconsin

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Learn how to become an Education Administrator or School Principal in Wisconsin.

The Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction offers administration licensure for accomplished educators who wish to move into leadership positions at their schools.

Licensure in administration shows that an administrator candidate can sustain school culture, ensure proper school management, and have the knowledge to successfully collaborate with educators, parents, and students on school-wide initiatives.

Academic Obligations

Administration licensure applicants must have completed a master’s degree program in the area of administration before seeking licensure.

Administrative programs typically focus on educational leadership and school management skills, giving potential school principals a foundation for running a school.

Graduate administrative programs must lead to institutional endorsements from a licensed official of the program, which signals successful completion and licensure recommendation.

For additional info on programs leading to administrative degrees, click here.

Classroom Teaching Experience Requirements

A school principal must identify with educators and students, and often, the best way to accomplish this is by being educators themselves. That’s why, before becoming education administrators, potential school principals must first hold Professional Educator Licenses to teach in early childhood through adolescent levels.

Applicants must have accomplished at least 3 years of successful teaching at any grade level from early childhood to adolescence.

Document and Application Requirements

The DPI requires initial administration applicants to utilize the ELO System to complete the licensure application successfully.

There are 4 major areas to complete on the application:

  • Applicant Information: Provide a phone number where you can be reached from 8 a.m. and 4 p.m. Central Standard Time.
  • License Requested: Indicate the requested license and the date the license should start
  • Experience: Send a work authentication form to employers to prove you’ve gained the experience necessary to be a school principal.
  • Graduate Education and Institutional endorsement: List graduate degrees and provide endorsement info.

In addition to the requested info, applicants must mail a $100 application fee with their completed application packet covering the cost of license review and processing.

Administrator candidates for licensure must mail their application packets, including fee payments, to their Wisconsin institution’s certifying officer for endorsement. The college will then forward the application to the DPI.

Background Check Requirements

Before earning licensure, candidates must also fill out a Conduct and Competency Review consisting of 12 yes or no queries about the administrator candidate’s past conduct.

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