Archer Names New Middle School Director
On Thursday, May 9, Head of School Ms. English shared an announcement with the Archer community about the selection of a new Middle School Director.
Dear Archer Community,
I’m thrilled to announce that Ms. Jemma Kennedy has been selected as Archer’s new Middle School Director. Ms. Kennedy currently teaches Middle School math and chairs our Middle School Math Department. She will assume her new role starting July 1.
With a B.A. in Mathematics from Mt. Holyoke College, an M.A. in Mathematics Education from the University of Georgia, and an M.A. in Independent School Leadership from Columbia University, Ms. Kennedy has devoted her career to serving in girls’ schools, including leadership roles at Atlanta Girls’ School, Columbus School for Girls and, most recently, as Assistant Head at Westridge School in Pasadena. The Search Committee, comprised of faculty and staff Elana Goldbaum, Susan Smith, Felicia Paik, and Gretchen Warner, were not only impressed with the depth of Ms. Kennedy’s experience in girls’ schools but also her deep appreciation for Archer’s unique culture and approach. In her cover letter she wrote:
“As a member of Archer’s faculty this past year, I have been drawn in by the amazing culture of this school. There is a profound sense of joy, an unwavering commitment to student success, and an unparalleled devotion among the teachers and administrators to strong, research-driven practice in all aspects of teaching and learning. I am struck by the willingness of this community to lean, heart-forward, into the process of growth and reflection, and I am truly smitten by the goodwill that the members of this community extend toward one another. Archer celebrates risk, reflection, and refining among its adult members, and because of this, its students understand that they can risk, reflect and refine their own practices. This is a place where girls sense that they belong, where they know they can explore and discover as they are challenged and supported.”
Ms. Kennedy’s love of middle school and steadfast belief in the capacity of every student to excel was reflected in the feedback we received from parents and students alike who value school leaders who not only meet students where they are but also appreciate them for who they are. Students and their families who’ve known Ms. Kennedy as a math teacher this year can attest to the fact that she leads with love and an abiding belief in each and every one of her students. Likewise, Middle School faculty expressed a desire for a leader who would continue to foster teacher leadership and a culture of professional collaboration, both of which, in her short time as Middle School Math Chair, Ms. Kennedy has demonstrated amply.
Please join the Search Committee and me in congratulating Ms. Kennedy as Archer’s new Middle School Director.