NASSP's Survey of America’s School Leaders and High School Students

Designed by school leaders and students, this nationally representative survey explores the opinions of principals, assistant principals, and high school students on the challenges of leading and learning at school as well as their thoughts on mental health, school safety, and how to better meet the needs of all learners.

How much help do you feel like you needed when it came to your own emotional or mental health last year?

For many, the last year has been the start of a return to normalcy. But the overwhelming challenges facing school communities continue to shift and escalate, driven by pandemic fallout, a politically fraught landscape and years of burning the candle at both ends.

The key findings include:

School Leader Experience

1 out of 2 school leaders say their stress level is so high they are considering a career change or retirement.

When are you most likely to leave your current role?

Which would most likely keep you in your profession?

Do you agree or disagree you have the following in your role?

Staffing shortages are a problem at my school.

As a school leader, do you feel your opinion is represented “a great deal” in major decisions and policy considerations?

How do you currently spend more than six hours a week?

How do you want to spend more than six hours a week?

In which of the following areas are students involved at your school?

“Principals in every state are facing enormous challenges resulting in significant stress with no end in sight. The survey results make clear that while we love working with students and teachers, our conditions are unsustainable and if left unaddressed, could result in principal shortages that will be difficult to overcome.”

—Ryan Merriwether Principal of North Junior High School in Evansville, IN

Photo of Ryan Merriwether
Ryan Merriwether

Student Experience

73% of students report they are generally satisfied at their school, but there is an opportunity to involve them more in school planning and policies.

Do you agree or disagree you have the following as a student?