Reflecting on Principal Smith’s time at DPMHS

Leslie Hicks

Dear Ms. Smith,

When words fail, some of us turn to math.

Daniel Pearl Magnet High School has only improved since your arrival. Daniel Pearl has, in fact, grown from good to great as a direct consequence of your leadership, Ms. Smith. It has been an honor to work at this school as a part of your team.

I have never known you turn away a student, teacher or parent. Your willingness to honor every voice with your undivided attention humbles me and challenges all of us to improve. It convinces me, too, that you have found a way to expand the day past 24 hours. (Perhaps you could show me the math you do to make that happen.)You manage an uncountable number of jobs, yet still, lead, encourage, and mentor. I have witnessed you be teacher, therapist, lawyer, politician, navigator, city planner, coach, yogi, and cheerleader to students and to parents and to staff members. I have never known one head to wear so many hats so well. And I know that I never want to know all that I know I haven’t witnessed. I do know that you go above and beyond running interference to protect scholars and staff from additional stresses.

Ms. Smith, I hope you have noticed the theme of these mathematical statements. In each case, you are greater than – greater than the resources you have been given, greater than what your scholars and staff could reasonably expect, greater, certainly, than you are paid to be.

For all of the ways you have been greater than for Daniel Pearl Magnet High School, thank you!