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Registration is open for our next 2-day Mentoring & Executive Coaching training session in Lansing.  

Strengthening Leaders


Knowing expertise can't be given, only developed, MASSP's Strengthening Leaders program is designed to support aspiring, emerging and advancing administrators through cohort based induction and personalized mentoring and coaching.

Educator shortages are impacting schools across our state.  Not only do we have fewer people interested in pursuing a career in education, but more and more are leaving soon after arrival.  

The impact of shortages in the educator pipeline are not only impacting classroom staffing, but also those interested in being school leaders. The applicant pool for Assistant Principal and Principal positions is both shallow, and less experienced than ever before. Under-resourced mentoring programs and coaching services have contributed to our state's struggle to attract, train and retain building level administrators.

While many of us have official or unofficial mentors, today’s educators need more than the listening ear of a colleague. Purposeful, coordinated, well-resourced, and supported programs of induction, mentorship and coaching are needed. Through quality induction, mentoring and coaching, educators are able to leverage strengths, recognize blindspots and strengthen their practice to positively build culture and lead learning. 

Beginning July 1, 2024, MCL 380.1249b(1)(o) requires districts to assign a mentor or coach to each school administrator for the first 3 years in which the school administrator is in a new administrative position. To help meet this need, MASSP has trained a cadre of mentor coaches who will be well prepared to support new administrators statewide.

The Michigan Association of Secondary School Principals (MASSP) offers mentoring and coaching services through our Strengthening Leaders program. These services are grounded in the foundational beliefs:

  • Expertise can’t be given, it can only be developed.
  • Leaders can’t lead what they are unwilling to learn.
  • Behavior is a choice.
  • Don’t let perfect be the enemy of progress, take your next best step to build culture and lead learning.

MASSP’s Strengthening Leaders, offers an integrated approach to high quality induction, mentoring and coaching that leverages both cohort based induction and 1:1 mentoring and coaching. 

  • Year 1: Monthly cohort based induction meetings via Zoom and monthly 1:1 mentor coach meetings to check-in, progress monitor goals, and commit to next steps. 
  • Year 2: Quarterly cohort based induction meetings via Zoom and bi-monthly 1:1 mentor coach meetings to check-in, progress monitor goals, and commit to next steps. 
  • Year 3: Three cohort based induction meetings via zoom (August, January and May) and bi-monthly 1:1 mentor coach meetings to check-in, progress monitor goals, and commit to next steps. 

The Strengthening Leaders framework is built upon two research-based tools, including the University of Washington Center for Educational Leadership’s (UW-CEL) 4 Dimensions of Leadership (4D), Principal Support Framework and the Behavioral Elements (BE). 

  • UW-CEL’s 4D framework describes key actions and dispositions for school leaders. The 4D framework supports school leaders in developing a vision of what it means to be an equity-driven leader forging transformed schools, build reflective practice for themselves, with their colleagues and with the school community as a whole, and engage in shared work with school system leaders and peers to surface leader professional learning needs and highlight areas for inquiry.
  • The BE program recognizes behavior is a choice and the decisions to act in a certain way can make or break our success.  BE’s approach to coaching helps leaders understand what drives their behavior, the behavior of those with whom they work, and offers tools and tactics to help make better behavioral choices that build relationships, foster growth, and improve performance.

Strengthening Leaders mentor coaching has a core cost of $3000 for 12 months of service.

For more information please contact Tom Lietz at or Colin Ripmaster at

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