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Edgecombe County Principal of the Year Lauren Lampron ‘14MSA, ‘19EDD: ‘I Hope My Work Serves as a Catalyst to Allow Education to Become an Equalizer in Our Society’

Lauren Lampron

After earning her bachelor’s degree in psychology in 2010, Lauren Lampron ‘14MSA, ‘19EDD joined the Eastern North Carolina Corps of Teach for America, where she was placed in Edgecombe County. She has served in that county ever since.

A decade later, Lampron is leading W.A. Pattillo Middle School, where she was named the 2019-20 Edgecombe County Public Schools Principal of the Year.

“The principals I serve with are not just good principals, they are good people. I continue to be inspired and encouraged by the meaningful work occurring in their buildings. I acknowledge that I am one of many servants leading the charge for change,” she said. “I appreciate the highlights this award shines on our school. Our staff and students are working relentlessly to change educational outcomes for children. My staff join me in receiving this honor.”

Serving in an administrative role for the past five years — four as principal — Lampron was inspired to leave the classroom when she saw the impact a principal could have on a school.

She enrolled in the NC State College of Education to pursue a Master of School Administration, where she was selected to participate in the Northeast Leadership Academy (NELA).

Through NELA, Lampron developed lasting relationships with her cohort, served as a principal-resident for one academic year and had real-time, in-person mentorship from Bill Harrison, Ed.D., the former chairman of the North Carolina State Board of Education.

“Dr. Bill Harrison visited me weekly during my principal residency at Tarboro High School. I cannot imagine a more impactful experience for a developing administrator than to have such intentional mentorship,” she said. “I am grateful for the gift of mentorship.”

Lampron credits the NELA program and the NC State College of Education for developing her leadership skills and preparing her to be a successful principal.

“Dr. Bonnie Fusarelli has engineered an authentically engaging team of educators through the NELA principal preparation program. They have created an ambitious and admired educational experience,” Lampron said. “The program has elevated teacher-leaders from across eastern North Carolina to fill an area of need in rural areas.”

After earning her master’s degree, Lampron went on to earn her Doctor of Education in educational leadership and supervision from the NC State College of Education.

Now, as she leads W.A. Pattillo Middle School, she is motivated by her interest in ensuring educational equity occurs in all classrooms and by being able to work with staff members to create a shared vision for student success.

Her first principal, Marc Whichard, Ed.D., who is now superintendent of Whiteville City Schools, she says, served as the beacon of light to which she saw an answer to educational inequities.

“When a school is able to create a calm, loving environment, children feel safe enough to be themselves and to learn without distraction,” she said “I, too, seek to continue to create this environment for the children we serve.

“I love fostering discovery. In students, I am able to co-create an environment that allows them to explore their passion and their true identity. In adults, I am able to be part of a journey to develop stronger empathetic, instructional leaders by providing the grace of encouragement to fail forward.”