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Celebrated Literacy Leader Named JPS Administrator of the Year

Dr. Shauna Nicholson-Johnson holding Administrator of the Year plaque
Dr. Shauna Nicholson-Johnson

Dr. Shauna Nicholson-Johnson is the 2017 Jackson Public Schools Administrator of the Year. JPS Chief Academic Officer of Elementary Schools Dr. William Merritt made the announcement during a schoolwide assembly at Baker Elementary where Dr. Nicholson-Johnson is the principal.

"It's especially gratifying when you have a school where you demonstrate the kind of growth these students have demonstrated," said JPS Interim Superintendent Dr. Freddrick Murray in his congratulatory remarks. "They are really blessed to have this leader in this space at this time."

Dr. Nicholson-Johnson led Baker Elementary to an A-rating in the 2015–2016 school year. Under her leadership, the school also achieved the highest growth in reading statewide among the lowest 25 percent of elementary students. Mississippi Department of Education officials held a celebration at the school to recognize this success. Leveraging strong Adopt-a-School partnerships, Baker Elementary has successfully completed many special projects and activities, including upgrading the school's playground equipment.

"Baker becoming an A school took time, it took accountability from leadership, teachers, scholars, parents and all community stakeholders," said Dr. Nicholson-Johnson. "We are a team and this team made this happen. We have to remember at the end of the day, scholars are our focus."

The Tougaloo College graduate earned a bachelor’s degree in Psychology and later pursued additional studies at Jackson State University. From JSU she has completed a Master of Arts in Teaching, a Specialist degree in Education Administration and Supervision and a Doctorate degree in Elementary and Early Childhood Education. Along the way, Dr. Nicholson-Johnson has also gained extensive education and administrative experience. She was an elementary school teacher before becoming a district-level curriculum/instructional specialist and intervention specialist for Jackson Public Schools.

Active in the community, civic and professional organizations, Dr. Nicholson-Johnson has received awards for outstanding achievements and contributions. Among those include the inaugural class for Jackson Public Schools Leadership Development Academy, Who’s Who Among Colleges and Universities, and Outstanding Young Women of America Award. She is a member of the Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development and National Education Association and Delta Sigma Theta Sorority.

Dr. Nicholson-Johnson will be considered with other outstanding administrators across the state for the Mississippi Administrator of the Year.

Dr. William Merrit, Dr. Nicholson-Johnson, and Dr. Freddrick Murray
Dr. Shauna Nicholson-Johnson, center, with Elementary Chief Academic Officer Dr. William Merritt III, and JPS Interim Superintendent Dr. Freddrick Murray

Dr. Nicholson-Johnson received a gift package valued at more than $500 thanks to donations from the friends of Jackson Public Schools. A special thanks goes to the District’s generous and supportive business community for these donations to the 2017 JPS Administrator of the Year:

  • An oversized umbrella, TEC of Jackson
  • A floral arrangement and gift basket, Kroger, I-55 N
  • A 30-ounce Ozarka Trail Stainless Steel Tumbler, The Trophy Shoppe
  • $50 gift card to Surin of Thailand Restaurant
  • 2 family passes to the Smith Robertson Museum and Cultural Center
  • A complimentary weekend night stay, Courtyard by Marriott
  • Administrator of the Year plaque donated by Baker, Donelson

Photo Gallery: 2017 JPS Administrator of the Year

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