The principal at Oveta Culp Hobby Elementary School at Fort Hood did not notify Assistant Principal Wendy Haider that she was being nominated as the Assistant Principal of the Year, an award from the Texas Elementary Principals and Supervisors Association.

It all came as a total surprise because the results remained secret until the principal sent Haider an email that told her to be sure and check out the TEPSA website.

That’s when Haider learned she was selected for the prestigious award.

TEPSA presented the award in June during its convention, but Haider was out of town and was unable to attend.

“This award is a great recognition for the work I do everyday,” she said. “Days are full and it’s not easy trying to facilitate a positive climate among parents, students and teachers, but it’s what I do. It’s a big honor to see that your efforts are appreciated and recognized.”

Haider has been an assistant principal for two years at Oveta Culp Hobby Elementary. Before that, she was a campus instructional specialist and was a teacher for 16 years. She has taught first, third and fourth grades, and reading intervention. Haider has been an educator for 19 years.

Her bachelor’s degree is from the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor where she also is working on her doctorate.

“I’ve not made any decision about my thesis or a specific direction. I see it as continued learning for me in the field of education that will have impact on student and teacher success,” she said. “Education is public service to kids, but it needs to be more than just something they have to do but also enjoy and give them life skills.”

The job of an assistant principal is to facilitate and coordinate special education and ensure that all federal laws protect all kids and their needs are being met. That doesn’t include the day-to-day responsibilities of campus discipline, instructional leadership and supporting teachers.

Part of the award process was to fill out an application explaining her work at the campus. The most time consuming is collaboration with teachers, making intervention plans, facilitating meetings with teachers and discussing with them what might be needed to improve their performance.

“I tutored kids in fourth grade all year,” she said.

Haider, along with her husband and two children, lives in Nolanville.

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