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New principal named at Martinsburg High

June 04, 2008|By MATTHEW UMSTEAD

MARTINSBURG, W.Va. - Martinsburg High School has a new principal.

The appointment of Regina D. Phillips, 48, of Jefferson County, W.Va., was made effective July 1. She replaces Kenneth Pack, who accepted an administrative position at Pikeside Learning Center earlier this year.

Berkeley County Schools Superintendent Manny P. Arvon II said Phillips "stood out" among the five candidates interviewed for the job.

"She leaves a trail of successes everywhere she goes," Arvon said.

The superintendent said Phillips was involved in helping Eagle School Intermediate make substantial changes that culminated with the Martinsburg-area school receiving a 2008 Panasonic National School Change Award. The school was the first in West Virginia to receive the honor, which has been given to six schools nationwide each year since 2000 for bringing about substantial academic improvement.

For the past five years, Phillips has worked as a state Department of Education consultant at three of Martinsburg High School's "feeder" schools - South Martinsburg and North Martinsburg middle schools and Eagle School Intermediate.

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"I know these kids and I know what their potential is," Phillips said in a phone interview.

From 1994 to 2000, she was as an assistant principal at North Hagerstown and Clear Spring high schools in Washington County.

During her tenure at Clear Spring, the school was honored as a National Blue Ribbon School of Excellence.

After her work for Washington County Public Schools, Phillips became principal at Fort Ritchie National Role Models Academy, administering residential and academic programs for at-risk youth.

A Tucker County, W.Va., native, Phillips' career in education began in Monongalia County in 1982, the year she graduated from West Virginia University with a bachelor's degree in education.

"I've always aspired to be a school administrator from early on," Phillips said.

Her first job at University High School in Morgantown, W.Va., entailed teaching, coaching and coordinating the school's dropout prevention program.

The dropout prevention program was one of the first in the state and the school became a model for others, with Phillips leading workshops and training for area educators on the effectiveness and development of this program.

Phillips was named Monongalia County's "Outstanding Educator."

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