The principal of East Leesville Elementary Kristie Beasley joined over 200 educators in Washington D.C. at the National Association of Elementary School Principals (NAESP) National Leaders Conference.

Beasley visited congressional offices and asked lawmakers to address a number of issues, including boosting federal education funding, improving principal recruitment and preparation, and strengthening school-based mental health services.

“Principals can provide key insights on the issues that affect our nation’s schools, such as school safety and social-emotional learning,” said NAESP’s executive director, Dr. L. Earl Franks, CAE.  “By sharing their expertise with lawmakers, school leaders have the power to shape legislation impacting these critical issues.”

She serves on the Board of Directors of the Louisiana NAESP, and was chosen to be this year’s State Coordinator.

Beasley and her fellow educators got to speak with Legislative Aides on Capitol Hill, to share their concerns and experiences.

“This time I learned a lot about how things work in D.C. I learned a great deal about the role the Federal Government really plays in education,” Beasley said. “The people representing our state are very much on the same page as educators. It was a very positive experience. It was good to hear that they are thinking about the same things we are.”

One of the larger issues that was discussed was the need to make sure qualified teachers and administrators are encouraged to remain in Education.

Beasley noted that school districts are beginning to see a shortage of qualified teachers. Beasley said that she and her fellow educators suggested to the Legislative Aides that the student loan forgiveness program for educators be maintained so that qualified teachers and principals can continue to lead the future of our country in a positive direction.

Beasley expressed her optimism towards the meeting and cited the experience as a positive one.

For more information about NAESP, log on to www.naesp.org.