Featured Educator: Ginger Stanford

Photo Courtesy of Ginger Stanford

At what school do you currently work?

Westwood Middle School

What is your position?

Assistant Principal

How long have you been working in education?

22 years

What is your favorite book?

“Where the Red Fern Grows” by Wilson Rawls

What was your favorite subject in school?

Science and math

What inspired you to work in education?

I was inspired to work in education because of the outstanding teachers I had growing up in Alachua County. They helped me believe in myself and reach for goals beyond my imagination. They inspired me to give back to students and help them be lifelong learners. Now as an administrator I am inspired by the teachers I work with and what they do for their students.

What path did you take to become assistant principal?

I spent 16 years in various grades and schools before I became a district coach. As I pursued my second graduate-level degree I began working as a curriculum resource teacher at an elementary school. Westwood is my second school as AP and I participate in various trainings every year to learn more about being a school administrator.

What advice would you give to parents of children starting at your school?

Be proactive. Check backpacks and the parent portal weekly. Look in agendas and at work that is returned. When your child is struggling, the time to act is now. Find ways to work with teachers to improve study habits, organization and most importantly teach your child to advocate for him or herself.

What is your favorite part of being assistant principal?

Coaching teachers to improve their practice through discussions, observations and data collection. I also like helping students take ownership over their work, their behavior and their future.

How do you wind down from a long day at school?

Working in my garden and in my yard.

What do you like to do outside of school?

Camp with my family.

What has been your most fun interaction with a student?

Helping children celebrate their accomplishments, such as when a child comes to your office for a positive behavioral referral and you get to call his or her parents, or when a child comes in with an improved test grade and we can celebrate that his or her hard work is paying off.