We were all smiles during Monday’s Board of Education meeting!
I am EXCITED about our 22 new school leaders and the changes in store for their elementary, middle and high schools. This group of dynamic principals is leading the charge to do the right thing for children. Each embodies the change in culture that I would like to see in APS. All bring multiple years of experience in educational leadership, along with a passion for children and public education, to the table.
Below is how I introduced each new principal during the Board of Education’s August meeting:
- Bethune Elementary: Ms. Amia Burnette – has more than 15 years of experience working with students at both the elementary and high school levels and has received multiple grants to enhance student achievement and focus on character development.
- Brandon Elementary: Ms. Kara Stimpson – brings to APS 15 years of education experience as a teacher, instructional coach, district-level support and assistant principal, most recently at our very own Sylvan Hills Middle School.
- Bunche Middle: Mr. Mario Watkins – has 12 years of educational and administrative experience, has served as interim principal at Bunche for the past two years and has led several improvements at the school.
- Carver School of Health Sciences & Research: Mr. Marcus Jackson – has 20 years of experience, was the principal of a high progress school and is a former APS Elementary School Teacher of the Year.
- Carver School of Technology: Ms. Josie Love – has experience as a summer school principal and high school assistant principal, and has taught high school English in school systems in Georgia and Florida.
- Crim Open Campus High School: Ms. Dawn Parker – has a career in education that spans 17 years, has served as a principal mentor in APS, and began her career as a middle and high school educator in Virginia.
- Deerwood Academy: Ms. Camisha Perry – brings to APS 19 years of education experience, from elementary to college, and is a former APS teacher, instructional coach and administrator.
- Douglass High: Dr. Tony Lamair Burks II – has 20 years under his belt as an education leader, served as a founding principal of the first early college high school in North Carolina and has served as superintendent-in-residence with the National Center for Urban School Transformation.
- Fickett Elementary: Ms. Cheryl Twyman – has been a model teacher leader, assistant principal, interim principal and principal in APS, and in 2002 was our districtwide Middle School Teacher of the Year.
- Gideons Elementary: Jesse Berger – brings to APS more than 20 years of administrative and teaching experience, and was once the Teacher of the Year at Creekside High School in Fulton County Schools.
- Grady High: Mr. Timothy Guiney – brings to us 12 years of administrative and teaching experience, has led high-achieving schools, and in 2013 was named Clayton County Public Schools’ Principal of the Year.
- Inman Middle: Dr. Betsy Bockman – has a long history with APS that began as a kindergarten student at Garden Hills, then middle school student at Sutton and eventually a graduate of the former Northside High. She has served as principal of four APS schools.
- Mays High: Mr. Richard Fowler – has seven years of administrative experience at the high school level and has served as an assistant principal at Tri-Cities High School and principal at Woodland Middle School.
- Mile Elementary: Ms. Thalise Perry – brings 14 years of education experience to APS and has developed a reputation as a transformational leader for moving focus schools to proficient levels.
- North Atlanta High: Mr. Curtis Douglass – has 20 years of experience in education, both as a teacher and assistant principal, and was one of the chosen few participants in the inaugural class of the Aspiring Principals Program of Atlanta Public Schools.
- South Atlanta School of Computer Animation and Design: Tracie Astin – boasts that she and her parents are proud products of Atlanta Public Schools; she is a graduate of Mays High School, and she has more than 15 years of education experience.
- South Atlanta School of Health & Medical Sciences: Dr. Patricia Ford – is a former middle school math teacher, who became the district’s small learning communities project administrator, as well as director of career, technical and agricultural education before her current role.
- South Atlanta School of Law & Social Justice: Ms. Charlotte Davis – has more than 15 years of experience in education as a teacher and administrator, and is a 2014-15 finalist for the Atlanta Families’ Award.
- Sutton Middle: Mr. Woodbridge “Buck” Green Jr. – brings to APS 22 years of experience in public education and was bestowed the state-level High School Principal of the Year Award by the Georgia PTA in 2013.
- Therrell High: Ms. Shelly Powell – brings to APS 15 years of teaching, central office and administrative experience and was most recently the principal of Therrell’s School of Health & Research before we tapped her to lead the entire school campus.
- Washington High: Dr. Tasharah Wilson – brings to APS 14 years of administrative and teaching experience in elementary, middle and high school settings, and has served as a turnaround principal in DeKalb County.
- Young Middle: Ms. Laryn Nelson – is an Atlanta native with 22 years of education experience as a teacher, instructional leader and assistant principal, and she bears the honor as well of having Teacher of the Year on her resume.
Ladies and gentlemen, there you have it – the 2014-15 newly appointed principals of APS.