It was a packed house for Tuesday’s (Dec. 1) celebration for Principal Steve Hope. Penn’s Main Arena was filled to the rafters with the student body of nearly 3,500 students. With the Marching Band playing, the students roaring applause and cheers, it felt more like a Pep Rally then an all-school assembly! But it’s not every day that your principal wins the highest honor in the state (a first time honor for P-H-M School Corporation) … Indiana’s 2015 Principal of the Year! And the local TV news stations were on hand to capture all the excitement. Students and faculty snapping, Tweeting and reTweeting pictures on their smartphones and the students using the strobelight effects all added to the “paparazzi” and electric atmosphere.
Executive Director of the Indiana Association of School Principals Mr. Todd Bess was on hand to make the official presentation of the award to Mr. Hope. He modestly accepted the award and noted that his honor was Penn’s honor and would not have been possible without his great students and all Penn’s teachers and staff. Mr. Hope thanked his mentor P-H-M Superintendent Dr. Jerry Thacker, Board of School Trustee members: Larry Beehler, Chris Riley and Randy Leliaert, fellow P-H-M principals, P-H-M administration Cabinet members, as well as past colleagues and a former student--all of whom were in attendance. Local officials Indiana State Senator Ryan Mishler (R-9) along with a representative from U.S. Congresswoman Jackie Walorski’s (R-2) office were also in the audience for the big celebration. Mr. Hope first learned he won the award at the Nov. 22nd IASP Conference.