New Assistant Principal Dr. Lynn Irwin is ready to work with Windham Elementary School faculty, staff, students and parents to make this school year a successful one.
“My biggest goal is to serve the administration, teachers, students, and families of my school and school system to the best of my ability, and to help to create an environment that allows us all become the best we can be at our work,” she said.
Irwin has worked in education around the world.
“I am the wife of a retired Army pilot, so we’ve lived in many different places, which means I have worked as an educator in many different places,” she said.
Her first job in education was as a fifth-grade teacher at Shiloh Elementary School near Selma. Irwin’s educational experiences include serving children of military members and their families on several military instillations in the United States, work as a child development center director in Germany, and serving students and families in schools in Texas, North Carolina and Alabama.
Irwin said she found her way to education while in college; however, learning and helping others learn has always been a priority.
“Education has always been considered a top priority among my family members and still is to this very day,” she said. “My parents always believed that education is the most influential factor in determining an individual’s future and they ensured that we understood the importance of having educational goals. For the most part I have been fortunate to have knowledgeable, highly qualified teachers and professors throughout my educational pursuits, many of which served as mentors to me along the way.
“Receiving support, guidance, and high quality instruction allowed me to set, pursue and achieve educational goals that have molded me into the person and educator I am today. I made the decision to become an educator because I wanted to have opportunities to be a part of and positively influence the educational journeys of others.”
After graduating with her bachelor’s degree from Auburn University Montgomery, Irwin went on to receive a master’s degree in educational leadership from Troy Dothan, followed by both an Education Specialist degree and PhD. in Foundations, Leadership and Technology from Auburn University.
While working in education for almost 30 years, Irwin said she has seen big changes, like “moving from a teacher-centered instructional format to now a more student-centered instructional format where students have choices based on their interests and on their specific educational needs.”
She also said there has been a “huge” change in the use of electronic technology in schools as well.
“When I began as an educator, little-to-no technological tools were available in schools to support teaching and learning,” she said. “Now, a wide variety of technology is available for educators to utilize in order to bring real world experiences to their students and to support their instruction. These tools and experiences better prepare students for success in the future.”
She encouraged new and returning WES students to have an open mind for learning this school year.
“Here at Windham all students will learn in a loving, caring environment,” Irwin said. “When you come through the front doors of this school, you immediately get the sense that students are cared for and supported by the entire school staff. I believe students have to feel safe and cared for before learning can begin to take place.
“I would encourage the students to come in for a fresh, new school year with the mindset of enjoying the learning process that they are going to be provided here at our school.”
Last year, she served as a second-grade teacher at WES. This year, she will help WES teachers with curriculum and instruction.
“My role for this school year is going to be heavy in the area of curriculum and instruction,” Irwin said, stating she would help with bringing new math and reading resources to the classroom. “I’ll be doing a great deal of work with the implementation of those resources along with the collection of data from assessments. In addition, I will be facilitating the analysis of data in order to identify specific areas of need amongst our students, assisting teachers in planning interventions, supporting them in the implementation of those interventions, and monitoring the progress of our students.”
Irwin said she is ready and excited to work with the Windham faculty and staff in a different role.
“I’m very excited to be working at Windham in this capacity,” she said. “The faculty and staff here is one of the smartest and most talented group of educators I have ever had the honor to be a part of.
“I think together, as a team, we can accomplish wonderful things this upcoming school year. I believe Daleville City Schools is certainly on the cusp of something great.”