Perry among 25 to attend GASL
Humboldt Jr. & Sr. High School assistant principal Victoria Perry has been selected to attend a prestigious training program.
Tennessee Governor Bill Haslam last week announced the participants selected for the 2017 Governor’s Academy for School Leadership (GASL), a one-year fellowship program for assistant principals to cultivate and develop future school leaders.
Perry is one of 25 assistant principals chosen to participate in the program. She said the rigorous application process was very detailed with several facets during the interview process.
“I get one year exposure to cutting edge information from Vanderbilt and their professors, mentorship for one year with high school principal Dr. Nathan Kee of Huntingdon High School, one week at the Educational Institute at Vandy, while collaborating with 24 other assistant principals for one week each month,” Perry said of the training she will receive. “I will bring that knowledge back and share with Humboldt (City Schools).”
This second annual academy continues the partnership between the state of Tennessee, Vanderbilt University’s Peabody College and local school districts to build a pipeline of highly-trained school principals and ultimately improve school effectiveness and performance and unlock educational opportunities for all students. The inaugural class started last February, according to a press release from the state.
“We have raised expectations, invested more in education and are making huge strides in education in Tennessee. Our students and teachers have stepped up to the challenge and we need strong school leadership to support them and continue the momentum,” Haslam stated in the press release.
Participants were nominated by their district’s director of schools and selected through an application and interview process conducted by representatives from the Governor’s Office, the Tennessee Department of Education (TDOE) and Vanderbilt University. Dr. Versie Hamlett, superintendent of Humboldt City Schools, nominated Perry.
“She’s committed to our vision,” Dr. Hamlett said of Perry. “She’s very dedicated and dependable.”
Dr. Hamlett said she lives by the saying, “You don’t have to be the smartest person in the room, so surround yourself with smart people.”
Perry explained the application process, “Once nominated, I had to complete a written application with four essay questions that were pretty lengthy. I had to submit a resume.”
The next step was an interview with a panel of four representatives from the department of education, governor’s office and Vanderbilt. Perry was video recorded as she answered the panel’s questions.
The final phase of the process was a role-playing scenario. Perry was given a two-page scenario and asked to act out how she would handle the situation and the instruction she would give. Her mentor, Dr. Kee, then did a role-play of his own, mentoring Perry, as if that situation happened.
“He gave me great advice,” Perry said of Dr. Kee’s assessment. “He offered constructive criticism, also explaining what was done right.”
At the end, one at a time, the panel asked questions pertaining to current points in education to determine for Perry’s knowledge of today’s education.
“The interview lasted over an hour,” Perry noted. “It was very intense.”
Upon completion of the academy, participants will be expected to pursue placement as a school principal in their district or region.
“She will be ready for a principalship after this training,” Dr. Hamlett said of Perry’s bright future. “She’s going to make a great principal.”
It would be bittersweet for Dr. Hamlett, HJSHS and the students if and when Perry is offered a principal’s position with another school district.
“I will never stand in the way of anyone advancing their careers. I encourage our staff to keep learning—enhance their education,” Dr. Hamlett said. “The district will benefit. Our students win!”