B.H. Tharrington’s Olivia Byerly has been named the principal of the year for Mount Airy City Schools.
Mike Fenley, a field representative for U.S. Sen. Richard Burr, came to Mount Airy to help surprise Byerly with the honor on Thursday. Joining him were Dr. Don Martin, interim superintendent, Dr. Kim Morrison, chief academic and innovation ofﬁcer, and students from teacher Patti Bobbitt’s class.
Byerly graduated from Appalachian State with a degree in math, secondary education. She then earned a masters of arts in education from Wake Forest and an administrative license from Appalachian State.
Byerly spent 10 years in the classroom as a math teacher before becoming assistant principal at Mount Airy High School in 2012, right after receiving the district Teacher of the Year award.
Byerly served for two years as assistant principal before moving to Tharrington in 2014.
Over the past two years, Byerly has led the school to double-digit gains in academic improvement, said the school system. “She has also strived to increase access to technology for all students and guided the implementation of a dual-language immersion program which now has enrolled 56 students,” the school system said.
Morrison said, “Ms. Byerly has done an outstanding job at B.H. Tharrington creating an environment of excellence and achievement. She is a leader that shows every day how much she cares for her students and staff. She is well-respected and has taken BHT through some difﬁcult times and brought them together as a family. Congratulations to Ms. Byerly on her remarkable achievements.”
Byerly has been accepted into the doctoral program at Appalachian State where she is pursuing a Doctor of Education Degree in educational leadership.