November 6, 2015 |

The jargon is official, yet evocative.

Whereas principals are educational visionaries, instructional and assessment leaders, disciplinarians, community builders, budget analysts, facilities managers, and administrators of legal and contractual obligations…


Whereas leadership is second only to classroom instruction among all school-related factors that contribute to what students learn at school…

These are some of the praises United States senators and representatives very recently sung in their respective resolutions naming October 2015 National Principals Month and honoring our nation’s top school leaders.

Which got us wondering; do principals feel recognized and appreciated enough? Raise Your Hand Texas works daily and diligently to promote these contemporary heroes — people who have committed their lives to bettering their neighborhoods, the nation, and the world in their efforts to bolster our collective systems of education, and to empower so many millions of pre-K-12 students.

Dr. Carrie Marz, principal of Willbern Elementary School, strives daily to be a more compassionate leader.

We’re meeting principals who are laser-focused on so much more than “books, butts and buses,” as one of our program alums put it. Every day, they’re battling the status quo, investigating and implementing 21st-century educational models, mentoring teachers and staff, and helping the boldest and brightest minds of this generation thrive.

Dr. Bryan Williams, principal of Spring Branch Middle School, values time with students.

Dr. Bryan Williams, principal of Spring Branch Middle School, values time with students.

Now is the time. We ask that you take a moment to consider a society without strong leaders at the helm of the nation’s public schools, which educate the vast majority of our youngest citizens.

Now is the time. We ask you to consider what you might do — no matter how seemingly small — to lend your support and encouragement. (Volunteer your time, donate school supplies, send a neighborhood principal a “Thank you” message, or tweet your praise using #ThankAPrincipal.)

Here’s to the principals of America! And if you’re interested in learning more about the inner workings of so many of these champions in Texas, visit our Leadership Stories page, and spread the word!

2015 Texas Principal of the Year

PrincipalJerryAdamsPrincipal Jerry Adams — a Raise Your Hand Texas alum — attended this year’s Raise Your Hand Texas “Campus to Capitol” Leadership Symposium in Austin, which included a trip to the capitol where participants met with their state senators and representatives.

Good thing, too, Adams says, because it was the perfect primer for his recent trip to Washington, DC where he was honored as the 2015 Texas Principal of the Year, met with U.S. Senator John Cornyn, and networked with other state principals of the year.

“It’s very humbling,” Adams said. “You’re there in a room with people who are difference-makers across the nation, and everything they say is an effective strategy. That’s pretty powerful.”

Back at his high school campus in Lubbock, Adams can revel in his distinction — one that proves he supports Texas students. Ultimately, it’s about making sure the students are fully equipped to take on real life. And how can the public support our principals in that endeavor?

“We want to be able to connect what we’re learning in the classroom to the real world,” Adams said. “That business owner or community member involved in different aspects of their profession, what you do is very applicable to students, and important for them to learn how the skills they’re learning in the classroom apply to the real world.”

Download the application to nominate a principal for the Texas Association of Secondary School Principals’ 2015-2016 Principal of the Year award.

Read more about Principal Jerry Adams’ trip to Washington, DC where he was honored as Texas Principal of the Year.


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