The Association of California School Administrators was established in 1971, and is the largest umbrella organization for school leaders in the nation, serving more than 16,000 school leaders throughout California.
The mission of ACSA is to support California’s educational leaders; ensure all students have the essential skills and knowledge needed to excel; and champion public education. More than two dozen job-alike and issue-oriented councils and committees, a board of directors and a delegate assembly keep ACSA focused on school leadership and on education policy issues at the local, state and federal levels.
ACSA has a significant role in steering the course for improvements and progress in public education and for school administration. Among its many activities, ACSA continues to lead efforts in negotiations on school finance as well as in advocacy efforts to increase program flexibility for schools, districts and counties. Recognizing the state’s financial situation these past several years, ACSA has led efforts with counterparts in the Education Coalition to maximize education funding and to protect the integrity of Proposition 98.
ACSA’s focus on teaching and learning means the association has a lead advocacy role on issues such as curriculum and instruction, assessment and accountability and improving efforts to close the achievement gap. As expectations and accountability requirements for school leaders increase, ACSA continues to be on the forefront on No Child Left Behind implementation issues at the state and federal level.
The association continues to be the leading proponent in the state for school leaders and for our profession. ACSA led the cooperative effort to adopt California Professional Standards for Education Leaders, a set of high quality standards for effective school leadership. Professional learning programs offered by the association – ACSA’s Principal Center summer programs, ACSA academies for nearly every administrative position, AB 75 principal training programs and coaching programs for both new and experienced school and district leaders – are aligned with these standards to ensure quality among the ranks of school administration.
The State Level
Opportunities for involvement at the state level include serving as an elected officer, a member of the Board of Directors, or a representative to the Delegate Assembly. ACSA members serve on statewide professional committees, task forces and advisory bodies. This cadre of committed volunteers is a vital professional network for ACSA members. State ACSA’s leaders can be located on the state ACSA web site under ACSA Leadership.
The Region Level
ACSA’s 19 regions divide the state geographically and provide valuable opportunities for professional involvement with administrators in nearby school districts. The regional structure allows your voice to be heard on education issues. Each region elects regional officers who also serve as the region’s voice at the statewide Delegate Assembly. In addition, regions elect a representative to ACSA’s state Board of Directors. ACSA regions offer networking opportunities, professional development workshops and programs tailored to meet local needs. A portion of your dues (14 percent) is rebated to regions for these programs and activities.
The Charter Level
More than 200 charters have been created within regions to address the local interests of members in one or more school districts. The charter structure gives ACSA its grassroots strength. If you are new to a district, the local ACSA charter is an excellent forum in which to meet your colleagues, share experiences and learn about district issues.