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Haralson County Middle School Principal Named Georgia’s Principal of the Year

MEDIA CONTACT: Matt Cardoza, GaDOE Communications Office, (404) 651-7358, mcardoza@gadoe.org  
Dorie Turner Nolt, GaDOE Communications Office, (404) 656-5594, dnolt@gadoe.org

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April 18, 2013 -- The Georgia Association of Secondary School Principals recently named Dr. Brian Ridley, Haralson County Middle School Principal, as the 2013 Georgia Middle School Principal of the Year.
 
After spending several years on the Department of Education’s “Needs Improvement” list, last year Haralson County Middle School (HCMS) received recognition as one of only eight “2012 Breakout Schools” in the state awarded for dramatically improving student achievement. After a short four years at HCMS, Dr. Ridley successfully transitioned the underperforming school to one determined to break out of the status quo, but is quick to reflect praise and credit the dedication of teachers, administrators and students of HCMS. 
 
"I am tremendously honored to have been named Georgia's Middle School Principal of the Year,” said Ridley. “It is a testament to the hard work of our faculty, students and parents. The best part of all of this is that people all over our state will get to see how awesome our kids are!"
 
“Dr. Ridley is a great example of what it means to be an excellent school leader,” State School Superintendent Dr. John Barge said. “The dramatic improvement in student achievement his school has seen is just one of his many accomplishments as a principal, but it gets to the heart of why we’re all in education – to help children accomplish their dreams through a quality education.”
 
Dr. Ridley was a 2012 finalist for the Parent To Parent of Georgia's Education Impact Award and has been featured as a keynote speaker at conferences sponsored by the Georgia Department of Education and Georgia's Parent Mentor Partnership. He is a graduate of the Haralson County Chamber of Commerce’s Leadership Haralson project and the Georgia Leadership Institute for School Improvement. He currently serves as a member of the State Board of Directors of the Georgia Association of Secondary School Principals (GASSP) as a district director and also serves as a liaison to the Georgia Music Educators Association (GMEA).
 
“I am very proud of Dr. Ridley for the way in which he has worked collaboratively with his faculty, staff and students to move Haralson County Middle School in a positive direction regarding the school improvement process,” said Haralson County School System Superintendent Brett Stanton. “This recognition is a direct reflection on his dedication, determination and persistence in focusing on the best interest of students. In addition, this brings attention to the results of innovative and progressive ideas being implemented by quality employees throughout our school system.”
 
The Principal of the Year recognition program is sponsored by MetLife and the National Association of Secondary School Principals and the Georgia Association of Secondary School Principals.  Dr. Ridley will represent the state in the competition for National Principal of the Year. The Principal of the Year program recognizes principals who excel in educational leadership, resolving complex problems, developing self and others, and community service.
 
Dr. Ridley lives in Tallapoosa with his wife, Carmi, and their five children Josh, Jacob, Jada, Brendan, and Raven.