(105 ILCS 5/2-3.53a)
    Sec. 2-3.53a. New principal mentoring program.
    (a) Beginning on July 1, 2007, and subject to an annual appropriation by the General Assembly, to establish a new principal mentoring program for new principals. Any individual who is first hired as a principal on or after July 1, 2007 shall participate in a new principal mentoring program for the duration of his or her first year as a principal and must complete the program in accordance with the requirements established by the State Board of Education by rule or, for a school district created by Article 34 of this Code, in accordance with the provisions of Section 34-18.27 of this Code. School districts created by Article 34 are not subject to the requirements of subsection (b), (c), (d), (e), (f), or (g) of this Section. Any individual who is first hired as a principal on or after July 1, 2008 may participate in a second year of mentoring if it is determined by the State Superintendent of Education that sufficient funding exists for such participation. The new principal mentoring program shall match an experienced principal who meets the requirements of subsection (b) of this Section with each new principal in order to assist the new principal in the development of his or her professional growth and to provide guidance.
    (b) Any individual who has been a principal in Illinois for 3 or more years and who has demonstrated success as an instructional leader, as determined by the State Board by rule, is eligible to apply to be a mentor under a new principal mentoring program. Mentors shall complete mentoring training by entities approved by the State Board and meet any other requirements set forth by the State Board and by the school district employing the mentor.
    (c) The State Board shall certify an entity or entities approved to provide training of mentors.
    (d) A mentor shall be assigned to a new principal based on (i) similarity of grade level or type of school, (ii) learning needs of the new principal, and (iii) geographical proximity of the mentor to the new principal. The principal, in collaboration with the mentor, shall identify areas for improvement of the new principal's professional growth, including, but not limited to, each of the following:
        (1) Analyzing data and applying it to practice.
        (2) Aligning professional development and
    
instructional programs.
        (3) Building a professional learning community.
        (4) Observing classroom practices and providing
    
feedback.
        (5) Facilitating effective meetings.
        (6) Developing distributive leadership practices.
        (7) Facilitating organizational change.
The mentor shall not be required to provide an evaluation of the new principal on the basis of the mentoring relationship.
    (e) On or before July 1, 2008 and on or after July 1 of each year thereafter, the State Board shall facilitate a review and evaluate the mentoring training program in collaboration with the approved providers. Each new principal and his or her mentor must complete a verification form developed by the State Board in order to certify their completion of a new principal mentoring program.
    (f) The requirements of this Section do not apply to any individual who has previously served as an assistant principal in Illinois acting under an administrative certificate for 5 or more years and who is hired, on or after July 1, 2007, as a principal by the school district in which the individual last served as an assistant principal, although such an individual may choose to participate in this program or shall be required to participate by the school district.
    (g) The State Board may adopt any rules necessary for the implementation of this Section.
    (h) On an annual basis, the State Superintendent of Education shall determine whether appropriations are likely to be sufficient to require operation of the mentoring program for the coming year. In doing so, the State Superintendent of Education shall first determine whether it is likely that funds will be sufficient to require operation of the mentoring program for individuals in their first year as principal and shall then determine whether it is likely that funds will be sufficient to require operation of the mentoring program for individuals in their second year as principal.
(Source: P.A. 96-373, eff. 8-13-09.)