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2011-12 News Releases

NEWS
RELEASE

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For Immediate Release:
March 26, 2012
For more information, contact the Dept. of School and Community Relations at 703-228-6004 www.apsva.us
  
  Henry's Piehota Named Principal of the YearPrincipal of the Year Dr. Lisa Piehota
 
Patrick Henry Elementary School Principal Dr. Lisa Piehota has been named Arlington Public Schools 2012 Principal of the Year. Piehota has been the principal of Henry since 2002.
 
“Dr. Piehota exemplifies what it means to be an excellent principal. She is a strong community leader and communicator and dedicated to teaching and learning,” said Superintendent Dr. Pat Murphy. “Her involvement and engagement with parents, students and the community demonstrates her willingness to do what is needed to make sure students receive a high quality education.”

Piehota earned a bachelor’s degree in elementary education from Florida State University and a master’s in educational leadership from Nova Southeastern University in Ft. Lauderdale, Fla. She earned an Ed.D. in child and youth studies: curriculum development and systemic change from Nova Southeastern University.

Piehota, a former Sergeant in the U.S. Air Force, began her teaching as a fourth and sixth grade teacher at Pinewood Elementary School in Florida.

She served as vice principal at Franklin Elementary School K-8 in Franklin, N.J., and the principal of Thomas Jefferson Middle School, also in New Jersey. For two years, Piehota was the superintendent/principal of the Netcong School District in New Jersey.
 
In addition to being a teacher and administrator, Piehota was as an adjunct professor at Warren County Community College and is currently an adjunct professor at Old Dominion University.

Under Piehota’s leadership, Henry received the Virginia Department of Education’s Competence to Excellence Award in 2010, the Virginia Index of Performance Excellence Award in 2008 and 2009 and the Virginia Department of Excellence Creating Excellence Award in 2006. “The diversified toolbox required to successfully administer an academic program to students ages 4-10 is quite challenging,” said Jefferson Middle School Principal Sharon Mondé. “Dr. Piehota addresses the task in the highest professional manner and ensures that those responsible for educating these children have the tools they need to promote success.”

“As a direct result of her leadership, Henry has excelled in all aspects of No Child Left Behind benchmarks, overcoming challenges presented by a student population which represents more than 30 countries and includes 46% of children receiving free or reduced lunch,” said retired Henry teacher Al Lewis.

Piehota is always visible and involved in the community. “Dr. Piehota demonstrates her dedication to the Henry family by babysitting a dozen students overnight at the school, running in a Girls on the Run race, visiting an ill child on homebound instruction and working on Sundays to complete administrative tasks so that she will have more quality time with teachers, students and parents during school hours,” said assistant principal Annie Frye.

Parents say that the personal touches make Piehota an exceptional principal. “One cannot overlook the test scores and other quantifiable measures, which all indicate that Henry provides an outstanding learning environment,” said Henry parent Lisbeth Fried. “Henry has consistently raised test scores and is actively moving toward closing the achievement gap.”

Piehota will be recognized by the Arlington School Board at its meeting on Thu, May 10. She also will be recognized on Thu, May 8 as this year’s Washington Post's Distinguished Educational Leadership Award recipient for Arlington. She is one of 18 principals from the metro area this year to receive The Post's Distinguished Educational Leadership Award.