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Morehouse College and Clark Atlanta University are launching a new fellowship program to grow the number of school principals of color in partnership with New Leaders, a nonprofit focused on training equity-focused K-12 administrators.

The online principal certification and master’s degree program aims to foster greater diversity among school leaders. Half of all students in K-12 public schools identify as people of color, compared to only a fifth of principals. Only 11 percent of principals are Black, and 9 percent are Hispanic.

“This will create the much-needed pipeline of diverse school leaders who are ready to make bold, transformational changes in service of our schools, our students and their families and our communities,” New Leaders CEO Jean Desravines said in a press release. “This is a national crisis that demands nothing less than our full attention and strongest commitment so that every student has a chance at success.”

The online platform for the Aspiring Principals Fellowship will be developed by Noodle, a company that creates online and hybrid higher education programs.

“Our children need guidance and nurturing from principals who understand the unique cultural experiences, proud heritage, and sometimes challenging socio-economic circumstances that affect learning opportunities for young Black students and those from other minority groups,” David A. Thomas, president of Morehouse, said in the release.