Current eighth graders from Kingsview Middle School will have the same principal when they move on to high school at Northwest next year, as the Montgomery County Board of Education has appointed current Kingsview Middle School Principal James D’Andrea to replace outgoing Northwest Principal Lance Dempsey.
Dempsey is leaving Northwest to become Associate Superintendent of Human Resources for Montgomery County Public Schools, after seven years as the principal of the Germantown high school.
D’Andrea is familiar with Northwest High School, he served as an assistant principal at Northwest for five years, from July 2007 until June of 2012 when he took over as principal of Kingsview Middle School.
“Kingsview Middle School is a very special place,” said D’Andrea in a letter sent home with students from Kingsview today, “and it has truly been a privilege to be a part of this community for the past four years. It has been my honor to learn, serve, and work side-by-side with you to foster a culture of outstanding teaching and learning that supports students’ academic, social, and emotional growth. I am deeply grateful for your support throughout the years, and my interactions with each of you have helped me to grow as a leader.”
“While I will greatly miss all of the students, staff, and parents/ guardians in this community,” said D’Andrea, “I am excited that I will see many of the students and parents and guardians again in the future at Northwest High School. The staff members at Kingsview Middle School are truly amazing, and I look forward to continuing to collaborate with them in my new role as we work together to ensure success for all students in our community as they transition from middle school to high school, now and in the future.”
“I couldn’t be happier,” said Sherry Gowarty, who is a parent of a current eighth grader at Kingsview, who will be moving on to Northwest next year. “I have been vice president of fundraising for the Kingsview PTSA for the past two years, so I have been able to work with him a lot, and what Mr. D’Andrea has done to transform Kingsview and put the school on the map in the Germantown area. I am elated for him.”
She described his leadership in working with the staff and parents at Kingsview over his four years as principal. “He was able to turn around so much at Kingsview. Prior to his time at Kingsview, people didn’t really know about the school. It seemed like the dud of the area, and now it is the place to be. This is a great opportunity for Northwest to continue to thrive.”
D’Andrea is a graduate of Vanderbilt University and earned a master’s in education from George Washington University. D’Andrea will become the fourth principal at Northwest since it opened in 1998.
As for D’Andrea’s replacement at Kingsview Middle School, Montgomery County Public Schools will hold a meeting at the school on Monday, May 16 at 6:30 pm to discuss the types of leadership characteristics important for the principal vacancy. Community members not able to attend the staff meeting are asked to provide input via an online survey, according to a letter from Eric Minus, Director of School Support and Improvement of Middle Schools for MCPS. Minus plans to begin the interviewing process for a new Kingsview principal on Monday, May 23.
Top: James D'Andrea named principal at Northwest High School effective July 1, 2016.
Next: Current Northwest High School Principal Lance Dempsey and future Northwest Principal Jimmy D'Andrea at the Board of Education meeting at which D'Andrea was appointed. Photo courtesy Greg Edmundson.