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Educator Named Texas National Distinguished Principal Finalist

Mar 28, 2017

Serita Dodson, principal of Frisco ISD’s Isbell Elementary School, is one of eight principals from across the state selected as Texas National Distinguished Principal (NDP) finalists by the Texas Elementary Principals and Supervisors Association (TEPSA).

The award recipient will be announced in May at a surprise school visit. That principal will receive $10,000 and represent Texas in Washington, D.C. as the 2017 NDP.

The NDP program promotes PreK-8 educational excellence and focuses on the fundamental importance of the school principal. The program honors principals who exhibit extraordinary leadership, commitment to their students and staff, service to their communities and contributions to the profession, including their professional associations.

“The school principal is critical to student and teacher success,” said TEPSA Executive Director Harley Eckhart. “These exemplary principals are making a difference in the lives of students across Texas.”

Dodson has been principal of Isbell Elementary since 2012 and will move to Bright Elementary in the 2017-18 school year. She began her career as a teacher in 2000 and taught kindergarten through third grades. Her bachelor’s degree is from The University of North Texas and her master’s degree is from Texas Woman’s University.

Dodson was among 123 elementary principals nominated for the award. After a rigorous reading process, in which applicants shared their educational philosophies and accomplishments both in and out of the classroom, a peer-review committee selected eight finalists. These outstanding leaders then showcased their achievements during a school visit by a team of educators.

The National Association of Elementary School Principals sets award criteria. The Texas award is sponsored by TEPSA, and the program is supported with a generous donation from Mentoring Minds.

All finalists will be recognized at the TEPSA Awards Reception June 14 in Austin.

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