New Waugh Chapel Principal Settles In
Amanda Edmonds, who most recently served as assistant principal at Nantucket Elementary School, said she hopes to keep alive the school's tradition of excellence.
For Amanda Edmonds, there has never been any question about where education stood in her list of priorities.
The Baltimore native was drawn to a career in teaching and administration as far back as high school, and it has landed her at Waugh Chapel Elementary School in Odenton. Edmonds started her first week as the new principal there this week.
“I was definitely excited, and that feeling has still remained,” she said. “Being a principal of a school has always been something I’ve aspired to do. When the opportunity finally presented itself, I think I was just overwhelmed.”
Edmonds comes to Waugh Chapel from Nantucket Elementary School, where she served as assistant principal. Prior to that, she was a reading teacher and assistant principal at Hilltop Elementary in Glen Burnie.
Edmonds takes over for Joyce Sims, who retired from Waugh Chapel after a long career with county schools. The two met frequently before the change was made official.
“We had a lengthy transition,” Edmonds said. “She was able to articulate to me the work that’s being going on here, and her vision and mission for the school. My goal is to really continue down the same path of excellence that has really been laid before me.”
It helps that Edmonds has education in her blood. Her mother served as a teacher at Brooklyn Park Elementary School for more than 40 years. Edmonds eyed a career in education early on, attending the Notre Dame of Maryland University and then the Teachers College at Columbia University’s Graduate School of Education.
After a short time teaching in New York, she returned home and joined Anne Arundel County Public Schools.
“My intention was never to stay in New York," she said. "It was to go get that education and then bring it back to Maryland.”
Edmonds takes over at a school well-know for strong academic performance. The school met all goals in 2011-12 under the state’s accountability program, and all but four classes last year were taught by a “highly qualified” teacher.
Edmonds said it appears that teachers have entered this school year in good spirits.
“I think the morale is great,” she said. “I think teachers really understand why they are here every day, and it’s for the children. This is what they love. This is what they enjoy. It’s not really a job for our staff here.”