IDEA’s Principal-in-Residence Program

Become a school leader and change the educational landscape for thousands of children in low-income communities.

About the Program

IDEA’s exemplary Principal In Residence (PIR) Program experience is a key preparatory step toward becoming an IDEA Principal. The residency is a full-time, competitive salaried, intensive learning opportunity that allows participants to develop the most critical principal knowledge, skills, and mindsets from our organization’s most successful school leaders. As a PIR you will be a fundamental part of the school’s leadership team and assume significant, on-campus management responsibilities.

IDEA’s PIR Program is unique in that it offers unparalleled coaching, mentorship, and professional development. Fellows receive world class leadership coaching from their mentor Principal, IDEA's Director of Leader Development, and their fellow PIR cohort.

What we believe in:

Hard Work

Closing the Achievement Gap requires that everyone give 100 percent. Every Day.


Our goals are ambitious, but we are, too.

Postive Change

Together, we know our vision of College For All Children is possible.

What we're looking for:


We believe passionate, compassionate leaders make all the difference in the success of our students.


At IDEA, we want to invest in you. Our professional development and career pathway will allow you to chart your own path.


We're looking for leaders from all backgrounds and experience levels. Varied perspectives will allow us to stay innovative and push us to become even better.

Here’s what current IDEA team members have to say:

“I’ve found my calling in this mission, as Principal of IDEA Mays College Preparatory, where every student, regardless of race or income, receives a great education that prepares them to graduate to and through college.”

Gerald Boyd
Founding Principal at IDEA Mays College Preparatory

“I’m proud that here at IDEA Bluff Spings, and in a continually changing world for the better, our students see educators, leaders, and role models of all colors.”

Deanna Bruce
Founding Principal at IDEA Bluff Springs College Preparatory

A unique fellowship:

Competitive Salaries
Teacher Salary Schedule

Full Health Benefits

Relocation and Education Stipend

Unparalleled Hands-on Mentorship

Extensive Professional Development

View All Details

Download our PIR Handbook


Is the PIR role paid?

Yes, the PIR role is a full-time, salaried position. Within IDEA, the PIR position is viewed as a promotion from the Assistant Principal role. The salary scale is commensurate with that promotion and competitive with public schools across Texas.

How long do PIRs typically stay in the program before becoming principals?

The PIR program is designed to prepare PIRs to run a new or existing IDEA school within 2-3 years. The decision to promote a PIR into the principal role is primarily based on each PIR’s progress on their individualized development plan, while also taking into account the demands of IDEA school expansion and vacancy timelines.

If selected, when would I begin?

The PIR role begins in the summer. New Leader Training at IDEA typically takes place in mid-July, but this is subject to change based on district plans. If you are selected as a PIR, we will work with you on a transition plan into your role.

If selected, do I get to choose the school site where I complete the residency?

IDEA will take your regional preference into consideration. However, we cannot guarantee placement at a specific campus. We take the matching of PIRs to mentor principals and residency campuses very seriously, and do our utmost to ensure that the PIR is placed in a school where they have the most opportunity to grow and develop.

What does the day-to-day look like for a PIR?

PIRs are not mere observational learners. They are core members of the “Lead Team” at their school site, alongside the Principal, Assistant Principals for Instruction and Operations, and Counselors. PIRs interact with teachers, leaders, students, and families every single day.

What kind of development can I expect as a PIR?

The PIR curriculum centers around an Individualized Learning Plan that guides your development on eight very specific “School Leadership Levers.” You, your mentor principal, and your leadership coach at IDEA all collaborate together to ensure that you are progressing on the levers related to your goals every week.

Interested in becoming a resident?

Fill out our interest form