MA in Educational Leadership: School Building Leader

Prepare for a Career as a School Building Leader

This master of arts program prepares certified and independent schoolteachers for school leadership positions such as teacher leaders and principals and to work cross-sector with government, private, and non-profit organizations.

You'll create a leadership portfolio that provides evidence of the competencies you've developed, reflections on your field experiences, and your plans for continuous learning, preparing for a career of working toward equitable and high-quality schools. 

Strong candidates for this program must have experience in pre-K-12 education and a minimum of two years of teaching or student services experience. Graduates are eligible for New York State certification as a school building leader after successfully completing an assessment administrated by the New York State Education Department.

What you'll learn

This master's program is built on the beliefs that:

  • School is the critical unit for the delivery of educational programs.
  • Schools of high quality are places where all children learn and grow in an atmosphere that is engaging, affirming, responsible, and just.
  • Effective school leaders work collaboratively and inclusively with teachers, parents, students, community members, public agencies, and businesses to create productive learning environments for all children and youth.
  • Public elementary and secondary education is an essential dimension of a democratic society and is entitled to serious, continuous, and meaningful support from its post-secondary partners.

See the curriculum and degree requirements for this program. 

How you'll learn

Core Courses and Electives
The MA in Educational Leadership: School Building Leader combines content courses with fieldwork and electives. In your core seminars, you'll study Educational Leadership, Organization and Leadership Theory, Leadership for School Improvement, Politics of Multicultural School Communities, Data Driven Decision Making and Leadership, and pursue additional study relevant to school improvement, teaching and learning, and community engagement and collaboration. Each course examines multiple theoretical perspectives, themes of equity and social justice, a focus on the needs and experiences of low-income urban children and youth, and implications for leadership within and outside of educational settings.

Flexible Study
The curriculum offers flexibility in creating a program of study that you and your adviser can tailor to fit your professional goals and interests. You can choose to study full-time or part-time. Full-time students can complete the 36-credit program in three semesters. 

Fieldwork and Internships
Students usually complete the required internship near the end of their programs of study. Full-time students have full-time internships of approximately 30 hours per week during the final semester of their programs; part-time students have part-time internships for approximately 15 hour during the final two semesters of their programs. Specific hours are arranged on site with the field supervisor, taking into account the student’s academic responsibilities.

Interns in the School Building Leader program are assigned to elementary, middle, or high schools in all five boroughs that match their experience and teacher preparation. The principals of New York City’s schools have been extraordinarily generous in working with our students. Participating schools include Facing History School, New Design High School, the School for Legal Studies, M.S. 131 Dr. Sun Yat Sen School, and P.S. 6 Lillie D. Blake Elementary School, as well in the NYC Department of Education Networks and Central Administration. Students who work full time in schools may complete the internship where they work.

Learn more about internships for this program.

What can I do with a master's in Educational Leadership: School Building Leader?

Graduates of this program work as teacher leaders, as principals, and in a variety of other educational leadership positions in public and private schools.

For more information about this MA program, please contact

Noel Anderson
Program Director