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Amy Gromada and Jeffrey Hopkins Named Outstanding Carroll County School Administrators

Release Date: 4/29/2011 8:12:38 AM

Amy Gromada, principal of Northwest Middle School, and Jeffrey Hopkins, assistant principal of South Carroll High School, have been named as the recipients of the Rita Board Dowd Award for Outstanding Carroll County School Administrator.
This award is given annually to two school administrators – one principal and one assistant principal (K-12) – awarded independently. The goal of the award is to recognize exceptional educational leadership in serving Carroll County Public Schools and its students.
Amy Gromada has 17 years in the field of education. Prior to becoming principal of Northwest Middle School in 2008, she was acting principal and assistant principal at Northwest and assistant principal at Francis Scott Key High School. She also was a math teacher at South Carroll and Century High Schools, as well as Northwest Middle.
Gromada is recognized as an inspiring leader who cares deeply about her students, staff, and community. She places an emphasis on teamwork and building a school culture that is conducive to student learning. She is always available for students and has developed a rapport with them by showing that she cares and wants them to do their best every day. She also gives teachers new tools and strategies that are effective in the classroom and last year worked together with staff to create a vision that is centered on success. Gromada also is always looking for new ways to involve the community in school events. One of these successful events is the honor roll rally. Students who have earned all A’s and B’s participate in games from academic challenges to whipped cream pie eating contests. The parents of all the honor roll students are invited to come and watch the rally.
Jeffrey Hopkins has 20 years in the field of education. Prior to becoming assistant principal at South Carroll High School in 2010, he was assistant principal at Manchester Valley, North Carroll, and Westminster High Schools. He was also a high school social studies teacher and assistant principal in Anne Arundel County.
Hopkins is known as an outstanding school administrator who is actively engaged in the school community. During his first year at South Carroll, he has taken the time to get to know the teachers and staff and has been dedicated to working as a team. Hopkins excels at understanding and administering school policy and provided training for the new grading policy and grade book system. He also has been instrumental in providing staff with information on how the flex time system is managed and how it benefits instructional time for students. Although he strictly enforces the rules, he always takes the time to make students feel special.
He walks throughout the building daily handing out birthday pencils to each student on their special day. Hopkins contributes to the inviting atmosphere of the school culture, and his actions within the school show that every student counts.
The Rita Board Dowd Award for Outstanding Carroll County School Administrator was created in memory of Rita Board Dowd, who passed away in May 2009. Dowd taught biology and science at North Carroll High School from 1997 to 2002. She was a member of the faculty that opened Winters Mill High School in 2002 and taught biology until her appointment as assistant principal in 2006.
Any full-time elementary, middle, high school, career and technology, or alternative program principal or assistant principal in the Carroll County Public School System may be nominated for this award. Any student, administrator, teacher, parent, faculty and staff member, or other individual may nominate someone they feel deserves consideration for the award.
The selection committee is composed of a member of Rita Board Dowd’s family, the previous year’s winners, school directors, and the Assistant Superintendent of Instruction. This award was presented during the Board of Education’s employee recognition ceremony on Thursday, April 28, 2011.

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