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Page High Principal Named GCS Principal of the Year 

Third time’s the charm for Page High principal Erik Naglee, who was announced today as the 2020-21 GCS Principal of the Year. Naglee was a finalist for the award twice before, in 2017 as the principal at Northwest Middle, and in 2019 at Page High.  

Superintendent Sharon L. Contreras said of Naglee, “He is a dynamic leader who is beloved by his school community, and who will truly do whatever it takes to make sure his students, staff and families have the resources they need and know that he cares.” 

Naglee was also named the secondary principal of the year. Johnita Readus, principal at Bluford-Peeler Elementary, was named the elementary principal of the year. Other finalists were:  

  • Carla Flores-Ballesteros, Allen Jay Elementary
  • Shannon Peeples, Cone Elementary
  • Jamisa Williams, STEM Early College at N.C. A&T State University.

The principal of the year announcement was one of four smaller events on Friday at Western Middle to recognize the district’s top educators, replacing the annual GCS Celebration of Excellence. The events and related prize money were sponsored by Guilford Education Alliance, which also sponsored the Teacher of the Year celebration on Sept. 15.  

This year, for the first time, the district named an assistant principal of the year. Angela Monell of Southwest High was given the inaugural honor. Principal Mike Hettenbach said of her, “Dr. Monell is well-respected in our school building. As a school administrator, she is approachable, trusted, willing to have critical conversations and ready to get back to the business of students.” 

Other finalists were:  

  • Wenalyn Bell-Glenn, Allen Jay Elementary
  • Michelle Sciandra, Pearce Elementary
  • Christian Walter, Western Middle
  • Karen Williams-Dick, Eastern High

The district also named its first Counselor of the Year, Nicole Webster of Early College at Guilford. In her application for the award, Webster wrote, “We must give our students the necessary skills to shift their mindset, develop a positive attitude, to embrace and work through their feelings in order to help them manage and balance stress while succeeding in school, career and life.” 

Webster was both the overall winner and the high school counselor of the year. Also recognized at the event were elementary counselor of the year Dejanell Mittman of Simkins Elementary and middle school counselor of the year Katie Thompson of Northwest Middle.  

The day’s events also included a recognition for the rookie teacher and mentor teacher of the year. La’Keia Colquitt of Gillespie Park Elementary was announced as the rookie teacher of the year. Her principal, Lei Washington, writes, “As her supervisor, I have noticed that her natural talent for teaching has been her strongest gift to our profession.  However, her refusal to give up, give in or give out has been her strongest gift to her students.” 

Other finalists were:  

  • Haley Strong Overturf, Western High
  • Tamia Isaac, Wiley Elementary
  • Kyla Stimpson, Dudley High
  • Juliann Stillwell, Joyner Elementary

The mentor teacher of the year was Jennifer Gibson of Millis Road Elementary. She was joined by finalists Deanna Cunningham of Jefferson Elementary and Veronique Williams of Andrews High.  

Gibson’s principal, Jennifer Cooper, shared these words from Gibson’s mentee: “Having the opportunity to have Mrs. Gibson as my mentor has allowed me to see the most important qualities an educator and leader should possess. Mrs. Gibson is dedicated to assuring that each student has an equal opportunity to learn and grow and to see their fullest potential. Her students know that when they walk into her classroom they are loved, cared for, and accepted for who they are.” 

In closing that event, Contreras said, “These amazing educators are to be revered for their dedication and willingness to learn, grow and share. Teaching can be a lonely job, but by working together and supporting each other, we can elevate our skills in the classroom and better serve our students.” 

Watch the GCSTV Event