Pennsylvania High School Principal of the Year Michael Ghilani Honored In DC

Contact: Public Affairs Manager Caroline Hailey at or 703-860-7280

Upper St. Clair, PennsylvaniaMichael Ghilani, principal of Upper St. Clair High School, was honored last week in Washington, DC after being named the Pennsylvania High School Principal of the Year by the Pennsylvania Association of Elementary and Secondary School Principals.  Designated a state winner in the MetLife/NASSP National Principal of the Year Program, Ghilani was eligible in consideration to be the National Principal of the Year.


As a principal, Ghilani has proven success in involving the local community in the life of the school and has shown an astute awareness of current and emerging issues as well as a passion in improving the school’s learning environment. 


Ghilani joined other winning principals from around the nation in DC for the three-day Principals Institute and Awards Gala, held September 18-21.

“NASSP is honored to recognize the outstanding work of Michael Ghilani,” said JoAnn Bartoletti, NASSP executive director.  “The Principals Institute was a wonderful chance for us to thank these outstanding educators while giving them the opportunity to speak with their elected officials, grow professionally and learn from and inspire one another.”

During their visit, principals had the chance to meet with their senators and congressmen on Capitol Hill to discuss educational legislation and its potential impact on their schools, partake in a roundtable conversation with representatives from the Department of Education and share and receive best practices with other principals from around the nation.

The Principals Institute concluded on Friday night with the Awards Gala, kicked off by a keynote address from US Secretary of Education Arne Duncan.

Each principal was then invited on stage during the gala to receive their award and be formally recognized for their outstanding accomplishments in their schools. 

The event came just before the start of National Principals Month in October.

The search for the national principal of the year began in early 2013 as each state principals’ association selected its state principal of the year. From this pool of state award winners, a panel of judges selected three middle level and three high school finalists, who were then narrowed down to the two national winners, Sheila Harrity (Worcester Technical High School, Worcester, MA) and Sheena Alaiasa (Samuel Wilder King Intermediate School, Kaneohe, HI).

The MetLife/NASSP National Principals of the Year each receive a $5,000 grant, while the four finalists each receive a grant for $1,500. The grants will be used to improve learning at the school (e.g., a special school project and/or professional development).

For more information about the MetLife/NASSP National Principal of the Year Program and winners, please visit

To learn more about National Principals Month and ways to celebrate, visit


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NASSP is the leading organization of and national voice for middle level and high school principals, assistant principals, and all school leaders from across the United States and more than 38 countries around the world. The association provides research-based professional development and resources, networking, and advocacy to build the capacity of middle level and high school leaders to continually improve student performance. Reflecting its long-standing commitment to student leadership development as well, NASSP administers the National Honor Society, National Junior Honor Society, National Elementary Honor Society, and National Association of Student Councils. For more information about NASSP, located in Reston, VA, visit

About MetLife Resources

MetLife Resources is a division of Metropolitan Life Insurance Company (“MLIC”), a MetLife company. MLIC is a subsidiary of MetLife Inc., a leading global provider of insurance, annuities, and employee benefit programs, serving 90 million customers. Through its subsidiaries and affiliates, MetLife Inc. holds leading market positions in the United States, Japan, Latin America, Asia, Europe, and the Middle East. For more information, please visit