Merrell Dade Named FCPS 2017 Principal of the Year
In 2007, when Merrell Dade became an elementary school principal, she was thrilled to take on the challenge. Yet, she found there was a big difference between being an assistant principal and her new job. Leading change in an organization, Ms Dade says, is more about understanding the strengths of the people you work with and learning side by side than anything she read as a graduate student. Despite her initial uncertainty, Ms. Dade is praised for balancing the demands of an administrator with remarkable grace. “Ms. Dade is the model of compassion, intelligence, innovation, and strength that so many strive to be,” noted a colleague. “Her commitment to the Forestdale community is evident in all she does.” From loading books for the summer bookmobile to working with resource staff and specialists to ensure classrooms have the resources they need; Ms. Dade has turned the vision of a student-centered environment that promotes curiosity, innovation, and learning for all into a reality at Forestdale.