Tenia Pritchard has the privilege of both finding and pursuing her passion in the same place—DCPS. As a student at Eastern High School in the early 90s, her English teacher, Ms. Speight, inspired her to become one herself. Her path was set: higher education, then back to DCPS, first at an elementary school and then at Whittier, where she helped 2nd graders learn to love reading.
The path was complete—or so it seemed. Others began noticing Ms. Pritchard’s leadership qualities, and encouraged her to think about school administration. Soon, Ms. Pritchard was Dean of Students, then Assistant Principal, and then Principal.
While she loved teaching, her impact continued as an administrator. She took the mantle seriously—“I know that I am morally obligated to provide children with a high quality education. The decisions that I make will have an impact on students, teachers and the community I service for an eternity.”
That impact was on display at a promotion ceremony, in which an eighth grade student gave a speech about her journey at Whittier Education Campus. She stated that Ms. Pritchard was her inspiration. When the student entered Whittier as a pre-kindergarten student, Ms. Pritchard was a teacher. The student watched Ms. Pritchard transition from teacher to administrator. “The student said that I taught her that hard work pays off and when you work hard you will be rewarded,” said Ms. Pritchard. “That moment was confirmation that I am in the right profession.”
She continued, “Teaching is my passion. [As a principal], I am still a teacher; I just have a larger classroom.”