Simply put, principals are heroes, and their responsibilities are endless. They are masters at helping students succeed academically while simultaneously looking for ways to improve campus culture. These are certainly no simple tasks, but there is good news in this arena. Principals who empower their student leaders and increase leadership capacity often see a positive impact on both academics and campus culture.

Whether your students have been leading for years or you are just starting out, allowing your advisors and student leaders an opportunity to add their knowledge and skills will help your campus move to the next level. Leadership training programs, such as TEPSA’s Student Leadership Workshops are essential in developing student leaders to achieve their full potential regardless of your campus leadership team model.

When you send your student leadership team to a workshop, they will:

  • Discover that student leaders can create positive movements.
  • Gain an awareness of who they are as leaders.
  • Learn to collaborate more effectively with their team while meeting new friends.
  • Understand their roles and responsibilities as student leaders.
  • Develop skills to encourage and support one another.
  • Discern what makes a great leader.
  • Recognize the importance of serving as positive role models for all.


In this same workshop, campus advisors will gain skills and resources in:

  • Selecting and recruiting volunteers interested in working with student leaders.
  • Structuring student officers and representatives to ensure all have a voice.
  • Releasing students to take on more responsibility through agenda planning and working with advisors on setting goals.
  • Developing a constitution, which includes the purpose, roles and responsibilities of members, and the voting process.
  • Establishing a written election process that includes role descriptions, timeline, criteria to run, and voting procedures.
  • Developing new, meaningful projects that meet the unique needs of your campus and community.
  • Organizing the campus leadership team in a way that gives more responsibility and accountability to students.


Most importantly, student leaders and their advisors walk away with a toolbox of new ideas while having had fun with one another. Workshop participants report that their campus culture and academic achievement improve after leaders return empowered and ready to go to work implementing what was learned. Advisors say they feel more confident in planning with their leaders and supporting their efforts throughout the year. Advisors also report they feel relieved to have a new support system they can turn to with questions and concerns about everything surrounding student leadership. Not only do they receive quality, ready-to-use resources at the workshop, but they will also have year-round access to technical assistance from TEPSA’s leadership project directors.

Join us on this leadership journey this fall! Find a workshop near you. Contact StuCo with questions about starting or strengthening your student leadership team.

Lisa McLaughlin is the TEPSA Project Director for Student Leadership. Belinda Box, EdD is the TEPSA Assistant Project Director for Student Leadership.

The Texas Elementary Principals and Supervisors Association (TEPSA), whose hallmark is educational leaders learning with and from each other, has served Texas PK-8 school leaders since 1917. Member owned and member governed, TEPSA has more than 6000 members who direct the activities of 3 million PK-8 school children. TEPSA is an affiliate of the National Association of Elementary School Principals.

© Texas Elementary Principals and Supervisors Association

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