Parents and Students Meet New Bowie High Principal
Dr. Drewana Bey discussed her and the county's vision for the school year.
About 80 parents and students met with Bowie High School’s new principal, Dr. Drewana Bey, at the Bowie Center for the Performing Arts on Friday night.
Despite being at the start of a summer weekend, event coordinators were pleased with the turnout of the meet and greet.
“I was glad to see the parent and student turnout knowing that it was a Friday evening and prime time for vacations,” said Mary Nusser, vice president at large of the Parent Teacher Student Organization. “I knew many of the parents. They are very involved and willing to help.”
Bey spent about 45 minutes introducing herself and explaining the vision she and the county have for the school year. The plan focuses on five goals: High student achievement centered on a “college-going culture,” instructional leadership, student management, customer service and positive school culture.
In order to help achieve the goal of college readiness, Bey encouraged freshman students to take the PSATs to help identify their strengths earlier on and allow them more opportunities to structure their education. The county pays for sophomore students to take the test, Bey said.
While Bey spoke from the stage during her presentation, she answered attendees’ questions on the ground level.
While most parents admitted Bey will have a difficult job of filling the large shoes left by former principal Jane Spence, most said they are happy with Bey’s assignment. Bey served four years as vice principal under Spence.
“Jane Spence is a hard act to follow,” said Dawn Brodus-Yougha, parent of a freshman at the school and chairperson of the Education Committee for the City of Bowie. “She was always agreeable and willing to assist. I always heard good things, and I was excited to experience it first hand.”
A parent who only wished to go by her first name, Sharese, said she was happy to see Bey’s desire for all students to succeed.
“She seemed really interested in all student achievement,” Sharese said. She added that while Bey focused on preventing high school students from taking remedial English and math courses in college, Sharese would also like to see possible remedial classes for students coming from middle school.
Monique Downs, a parent of a sophomore at Bowie, said she liked Bey’s “positive attitude, even with the difficult questions” and her confidence.
She particularly enjoyed Bey’s focus on Positive Behavior Intervention Systems, or PBIS, which aim at “celebrating the good things students do,” Bey explained during her presentation.
PBIS “is one of the things that will help the school not degrade,” Downs said.
Students will formally meet Bey on Aug. 22, the first day of school for the county.