Chamberlain Elementary gets new principal

Written by Aaron Williams on . Posted in Local

The West Baton Rouge School Board hired a new acting principal, and is looking to hire a new permanent principal next semester, for one of its elementary schools.

Dr. Amy Westbrook was hired as Chamberlin Elementary School’s acting principal after Joni Nabors transfered to fill a vacant position in the school system’s pupil appraisal program.

David Corona, WBR School Superintendent, said that Westbrook was hired at the beginning of the year to be the literacy integration specialist, or reading coach, at Chamberlin.

Westbrook is a former East Baton Rouge Parish elementary school principal, the former superintendent of schools in St. Helena Parish for, the former Executive Director of the BESE (Board of Elementary and Secondary Education) and worked in a supervisory position in the recovery school district.

Corona said that when Nabors transferred to pupil appraisal, he knew Westbrook would be perfect for the principal position.

“When we moved Joni to the new pupil appraisal position, it was just a natural to move Dr. Westbrook into the acting principal’s job,” he said.

Corona said that Nabors’ background in special education made her a perfect candidate to fill a void in the pupil appraisal program where she will be working with and assessing students with ADD, ADHD, autism and other special needs.

“Nabors said she felt like her talents were more in line with the new job description that we created, but that she also loved Chamberlin and she didn’t know what to do,” Corona said.

He said that after discussions with Nabors, she felt that her major strengths were better suited for the pupil appraisal position.

“I agreed with her; I thought that she was,” Corona said. “So we agreed to transfer her from the principals job at Chamberlin to the new pupil appraisal program.”

He said that with Nabors in the pupil appraisal program and Dr. Westbrook in the acting principal role at Chamberlin, the WBR school system wins.

“It kind of evolved into a win-win. Our outcomes for special education children need to improve, so we tried to reorganize some things to make that happen. Joni found out about it and felt like that was a match for her,” he said. “And we have Dr. Westbrrok right there who has experience as a principal and loves Chamberlin just like Joni did, and worked very well with Chamberlin and with the people at Chamberlin – so she fit in very well right there. It’s a win-win.”

Corona said that the school board will begin advertising for a permanent principal immediately to begin next semester.

He said that Westbrook will be an applicant for the permanent principal position adding that the school board will go through “the entire process before the end of 2012 and have a person in place” for the beginning of the second semester of the 2012-2013 school year.

“I fully expect that Dr. Westbrook will be a good candidate for the permanent position as well,” he said, until we advertise for a permanent principal. And we’ll advertise for a permanent principal beginning immediately and have that person in place by the first of the year.

Corona -

At the beginning of the school year we had a person retire from pupil appraisal… a couple weeks later we had another person retire from pupil appraisal that we didn’t expect.

This is a golden opportunity for us to restructure some duties so that we can become a little more focused on acquiring better academic outcomes by special ed population.

Created job descriptions to fill 2 spots.

As a result of some of the work that Joni Nabors had done in the past regarding special ed – because she’s a special ed expert, pretty much – they involved her in helping to write this grant. And she became aware of the new job description down there.

Over the summer, Dr. Amy Westbrook came to work for us. And we placed her at Chambrlin to begin working as a literacy integration specialist. That’s how it all came about and that’s where we are. Former Elementary school principal in East Baton Rogue Parish, after that came to work for us. She wanted to get back where she could work more closely and more hands-on with children. She called me and wanted to come work for us.

We were very, very pleased that she wanted to come work for us. We’re happy that we had a position she could fill. She’s been atChamberlin since the beginning of the school year – as reading coach.

Pupil appraisal is a division of the school system that helps identify and work with children who have different needs.

She’ll be wotrking with children who are 504 – that’s just a designation of children who have adhd, add… children who have different needs.

She knows a lot about children with autism, and she knows a lot about assessment – how to assess what kind of outcomes we can expect with children, how we can improve those outcomes.


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