Ward 6 welcomes four new principals to Capitol Hill schools this year, including the interim principal for Miner Elementary School. The administrators bring with them extensive education, experience, and commitment to community involvement as well as to the development of the whole student. Each has identified particular goals for their school this year, emphasizing their love for students, learning, and community connection.
Brent Elementary School
Norah Lycknell comes to Brent Elementary with 16 years of experience in education. For the past two years, she served as the principal at Brookland Middle School.
Before Brookland, Lycknell spent six years as the principal at Janney Elementary School. During her time at Janney, the school almost doubled in size, both in terms of student population and the building itself. She has worked as a resident principal, assistant principal, and teacher with DCPS.
Lycknell was also part of the DCPS Executive Masters in Leadership through Georgetown University. Lycknell received a bachelor’s degree in history and political science from Northwestern University, a master’s degree in teaching from American University, and a master’s degree in educational leadership from Trinity University.
Eliot-Hine Middle School
Eugenia Young comes to Eliot-Hine from Roosevelt STAY High School, where she was the principal since 2014. She began her career as an academic advisor and has served students at the elementary, secondary, and post-secondary levels as a teacher, academic counselor, vice principal and college counselor.
Young describes her approach to families and communities as open and transparent and believes that parents are important partners in education. Young holds a bachelor’s degree in communication from California State University Fresno and a master’s degree in counseling from California State University San Francisco.
“This year at Eliot-Hine Middle School, we will focus on literacy, Social Emotional Learning (SEL), Response to Intervention (RTI), and math,” Young says, adding that this year accelerated math courses will be offered across all grades. RTI is the early identification and support of students with learning and behavior needs.
She says that students will be preparing for conferences which they will lead themselves, giving them the opportunity to build skills and share their own academic growth.
Young also emphasizes the link between students and the community, strengthened by a daily advisory period when a group of students and their adult advisor do structured activities to promote academic and social emotional success. “During our daily advisory period, we will implement social emotional learning strategies that will strengthen our student’s connectedness to our school community,” she said.
“Through hard work and perseverance, we will see great progress at Eliot-Hine.”
Stuart-Hobson Middle School
Kristofer Comeforo has served as an assistant principal with DCPS at both Cardozo Education Campus and Anacostia High School. Prior to these positions he was both academic dean and teacher with DCPS. During his three years of leadership at Anacostia as the assistant principal of the 9th Grade Academy, the school saw a 14-point increase in the 9th grade promotion rate to 77 percent.
Comeforo received his bachelor’s degree in biochemistry from Boston College and his master’s degree in teaching in secondary education from American University.
He tells the Hill Rag, “This year at Stuart-Hobson Middle School, we have two main priorities: building and maintaining positive relationships and ensuring rigorous instructional activities that meet the needs of all students.” He added that there will be an emphasis on positive relationships so that all of the students, families and teachers will love coming to school.
Comeforo says that staff is committed to a culture of teamwork and putting students first. “Aligned with the DCPS Strategic Plan, not only is it important that our students feel loved, but we also want to ensure that students are challenged and prepared for high school and beyond. To that end we aim to support and empower our teachers to provide every student excellent instruction every day. I look forward to continuing to partner with our amazing community as we strive to become the best middle school in the city.”
Miner Elementary School
Bruce Jackson is the new interim principal at Miner Elementary School for School Year 2017-2018. Jackson served as a Mary Jane Patterson Fellow at Hart Middle School for School Year 2016-17. Before taking part in the Patterson Fellowship, he worked as an assistant principal with DCPS at Cardozo Education Campus, a special education coordinator and special education teacher at MacFarland Middle School, and a special education aide at Walker-Jones Education Campus.
In a letter to the Miner Elementary School community announcing Jackson’s appointment, DCPS Chancellor Antwan Wilson said, “I am confident that Mr. Jackson’s experience has prepared him for this opportunity to continue the progress you have made with your students.”
In 2017, Jackson won the prestigious Rubenstein Award for Highly Effective Leadership as part of the DCPS Standing Ovation Awards. Jackson received his bachelor’s degree in political science from Westfield State University and his master’s degree in curriculum from American University.
“This year at Miner Elementary School, we are striving to create a school community that focuses on educating the whole child by ensuring that students are loved, challenged, and pushed to reach their highest potential,” he says.
“We’re committed to creating a school environment where students love to learn and want students to be excited to be here each day in front of our amazing teaching staff!”