Former Mississippi School of the Arts academic counselor, Avery Peagler, has been accepted into the University of Mississippi’s Principal Corps program and joins 16 others from around Mississippi. Principal Corps is a scholarship-based opportunity to produce leaders in our state’s educational system. The Principal Corps program has successfully graduated numerous cohorts and have placed them in districts all over the state.
According to the Principal Corps web site “Founded in 2009 with a $2 million planning grant from the Jim and Donna Barksdale Foundation, our faculty consulted top educational leaders from around the nation to design a unique curriculum that sets a national standard for principal preparation. In 2012, after four years of outstanding outcomes, the Robert M. Hearin Support Foundation became the newest major supporter of the program with a gift of more than $1.4 million.
Our 13-month program takes a parallel approach to transforming teachers into educational leaders. Through graduate coursework, our recruits are exposed to the theories behind learning and leadership. Simultaneously, through two full-time internships under veteran principals from across Mississippi, they gain the knowledge that only comes from experience. Upon successful completion of the program, Principal Corps graduates receive either a Master of Education (M.Ed.) or Specialist in Education (Ed.S.) degree in educational leadership from UM.
Admitted Principal Corps recruits receive full funding for tuition, books, fees, summer housing and a living stipend while at UM. Additionally, based on a cooperative agreement with your school district, most recruits can maintain their current salary and benefits during the academic year. Upon accepting a principal or assistant principal position and beginning work at a public K-12 school each recruit receives a $10,000 signing bonus. Each graduate makes a five-year commitment to stay in Mississippi after graduation.”
Avery’s time at Mississippi School of the Arts was monumental. Along with her regular duties assisting with class scheduling and state testing, she is credited for her help (along with executive director Suzanne Hirsch) in creating the senior seminar class in 2015 and taking the full reign in 2016, which drove scholarship amounts into record millions for MSA seniors.