OCPS clearly recognizes that the principal plays the most critical role as the instructional leader at a school, with the top priority of developing a team who will deliver effective, high-quality instruction. Implementing and improving quality instruction and curriculum while hiring the very best teachers and staff must be an ongoing process for a school to progress and achieve excellence. 

The Preparing Future Principals Academy (PFPA) has been designed to help leaders, aspiring to become a principal, acquire the skills and demonstrate competency of the standards in order to become a successful instructional school leader. The program is comprised of leadership training and the documentation of the Florida Principal Leadership Standards through competency based experiences and activities. 

As part of the OCPS Leadership Pathways, PFPA aims to develop transformational instructional leaders who are well-prepared to take on the challenges of the school principalship.


Participants of PFPA (referred to in the program as “principal candidate”) will participate in a rigorous program designed to include high-quality professional learning and authentic experiences to prepare for the principal role. Assistant principals who have been in the role for a minimum of one year may apply for PFPA.  Since all administrators are instructional leaders in our district, PFPA helps participants acquire the necessary skills to become proficient school-based leaders. In addition, district senior administrators and directors who hold state certification in educational leadership may also apply to a cohort, pending their supervisor’s approval. Participants will be provided feedback during the program in order to determine progress, and the program also provides differentiated professional development to meet each participant’s needs. After PFPA completion, the candidate may apply for School Principal certification.