The Daily Southerner, Tarboro, NC

Local News

November 6, 2013

Marc Whichard named “Principal of the Year” for ECPS

TARBORO — And the Principal of the Year is…Marc Whichard.

Whichard is the principal at SouthWest Edgecombe High School, the largest school in the Edgecombe County Public Schools district, with 900 students. Whichard received news of his honor on Oct. 22 and was publicly recognized for the achievement at Monday’s board of education meeting.

“Being chosen Principal of the Year out of the talent pool Mr. Farrelly (school superintendent) has brought into the district is very humbling and it’s an honor,” Whichard said.

This is the second time that Whichard has earned that honor. He was named Principal of the Year for 2011-2012, in his first year as principal at SouthWest.

Whichard will receive a $1,000 cash award from Wells Fargo, sponsor of the Principal of the Year program, and will move on to compete with other local award recipients from the North Central Region of the state.

Whichard describes his leadership style as “firm, fair and consistent…All three of those things woven in a family-like atmosphere, all of us working together for the benefit of the students.”

“Mr. Whichard is an outstanding Principal and is very deserving of this esteemed honor,” Superintendent John Farrelly said. “He exemplifies the qualities of a true instructional leader who is committed to providing SouthWest Edgecombe High School students with an outstanding educational program. The tremendous jump in the graduation rate is a testament to the team efforts Mr. Whichard is leading at SouthWest.”

When Whichard first took on the role of principal at SouthWest, the school’s graduation rates were third out of the traditional high schools in the district. In the 2012-2013 year, SouthWest had the highest graduation rates among the traditional high schools – 80.3 percent.

“What’s been most exciting to me is putting a school together that has achieved,” Whichard said. “We’ve come from third place academically to first place.”

Whichard’s goal is to continue to raise student graduation rates, saying he will not be satisfied until “every student graduates that needs to graduate.” He said the school provides counseling to every student identified as a potential dropout to help “get them across the finish line.”

“We have established a tone where teaching and learning is respected by our students and our community, with a heavy emphasis on college preparedness and rigorous instruction,” Whichard said. “My goal for SouthWest is to continue down the path we’re headed. We’re on a very strong path for success.”

Whichard has 10 years of experience in school administration, and seven of those years were with ECPS. He previously was assistant principal at Sam D. Bundy Elementary School in Pitt County. He has also taught history and English at Tarboro High School.

Whichard said he went into school administration to “give back to teachers,” whether it’s helping them with curriculum content or behavior management in the classroom.

“Me personally as an administrator is all about helping teachers be successful,” he said. In Whichard’s words, it’s a “servant leadership” approach.

The school administrator said he also gets great personal gratification from working with a student on a solution to a problem and “seeing the light bulb go off.”

“I can leave and go home knowing that I got a student back on track with where they need to be,” Whichard said.

That “care and compassion” for students and a desire to see them achieve academically is what drives Whichard every day as a school administrator. Moving forward, Whichard’s goal is go further in educational leadership and, in the short term, to chart out a plan for continuous improvement at SouthWest.

 

1
Text Only
Local News
  • Canoe on the Tar River set for May 1

    The Tar River Land Conservancy in partnership with the Town of Tarboro has scheduled its annual Tar River Paddle Trip for 8:30 a.m. beginning at Bell’s Bridge on N.C. Highway 33 North and will follow the Tar River to the Riverfront Park in downtown Tarboro.

    April 24, 2014

  • BOE to make budget case in joint meeting

    Edgecombe County Public Schools (ECPS) officials will have a chance to make their case for additional county funding Monday when the board of education and Edgecombe County Board of Commissioners hold a joint meeting.

    April 24, 2014

  • Keeping children safe is concern for DSS

    Blue and silver pinwheels lining the sidewalks in front of the Edgecombe County Human Services Building in downtown Tarboro bring to mind laughter, birthday parties, being carefree – all the elements of a happy childhood.

    April 23, 2014

  • Tarboro officially receives retirement community certificate

    The Town of Tarboro was officially presented with a certificate proclaiming it as a Certified Retirement Community Designation during a short presentation ceremony Tuesday in the town hall council chamber.

    April 23, 2014

  • Medicine drop off Saturday at Thorne and Bryan drug stores

    Prescription drugs left in medicine cabinets or lying around the house can be an easy target for abuse or the beginning of a journey of drug abuse.

    April 23, 2014

  • Soul food restaurant opens downtown Tarboro

    The savory fragrance of hot sauce and wings wafted through downtown Friday at the new restaurant in town – Southern Soul With D’Wings.

    April 21, 2014

  • Carol J. Hatchel Poetry Prize

    Edgecombe County writers have an opportunity to participate in a poetry and short fiction contest in memory of Carol J. Hatchel.

    April 18, 2014

  • helping hands.jpg New organization to offer the community ‘Helping Hands’

    The Rev. Jonah Walston's idea of assisting citizens of Edgecombe County, who have fallen on financial hard times, is collecting steam as other churches are buying into the idea.

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • Charges filed in fatal accident

    Charges were filed Thursday against a N.C. Department of Transportation employee after the state vehicle he was driving was involved in an accident that killed an off-duty Tarboro police officer.

    April 18, 2014

  • Taps 2.jpg THS JROTC officially retires flags

    American flags were burned Thursday at Tarboro High School, yet rather than an act of protest, it was part of a ceremony of respect.

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

AP Video
Raw: Kangaroo Rescued From Swimming Pool Raw: 3 American Doctors Killed in Afghanistan Raw: Obama Arrives at State Dinner in Tokyo Raw: Obama Plays Soccer With Japanese Robot Raw: Obama Visits Meiji Shrine in Tokyo Stars Talk Guns N' Roses at Golden Gods New Pictures of Ship That Sank in 1888 Oregon Gay Marriage Ban Goes to Court SKorea Ferry Toll Hits 156, Search Gets Tougher Video Shows Possible Syrian Gas Attack Admirers Flock to Dole During Kansas Homecoming FBI Joining Probe of Suburban NY 'Swatting' Call U.S. Paratroopers in Poland, Amid Ukraine Crisis US Reviews Clemency for Certain Inmates Michigan Man Sees Thanks to 'bionic Eye'
Facebook
Twitter Updates