ALEXANDRIA, VA-Earlier today Alexandria City Public Schools announced the winners of the 2021 Principal of the Year, Teacher of the Year, and Support Staffer of the Year. Learn more about the three distinguished individuals below. Winner information is from the April 30 edition of the ACPS Express newsletter. Content has been edited for clarity.
Principal of the Year: Pierrette Peters, Francis C. Hammond Middle School
The 2020-21 ACPS Principal of the Year honoree is Francis C. Hammond Middle School Principal Pierrette Peters. Peters is in her sixth year as Principal of Hammond. She is known as a student-focused leader who is committed to providing a safe, welcoming, and engaging school environment with high expectations for all.
Hammond Student Representative Sarah Murphy said, “Ms. Peters is a great role model because she shows everyone how to behave and act in a working environment. She is very respectful to staff, students and families. Ms. Peters looks to empower others and build others’ confidence.”
Teacher of the Year: Vilma Zefran, T.C. Williams High School
The 2020-21 ACPS Teacher of the Year is Vilma Zefran, T.C. Williams High School TV/Media Production teacher. Zefran has tirelessly worked to improve and add value to the TV/Media Production program at T.C. Williams since 1999. Originally a two-year program with 70 students, at present, it hosts nearly 100 students as a three-year program. Many students have chosen similar majors in college, entering the film and media industry to become award-winning professionals.
Former student Cheston McGuire recalls, “After three years under the tutelage of Ms. Zefran, I found a subject matter I was passionate about, a career I was interested in, and a college that — thanks to her advice and guidance — helped me chart a successful career.”
Support Staffer of the Year: Alex Weinard, Kindergarten Paraprofessional, Ferdinand T. Day Elementary School
Weinard has been invaluable in his role at Day Elementary. Simultaneously, he is completing his Masters in Teaching from the University of Virginia. Before ACPS, Weinard previously mentored youth in AmeriCorps and 4-H.
“Alex is committed to the whole school. He helps out whenever anyone outside our kindergarten team asks for help,” said co-worker Claudine Browand, “Also, he helped establish our Robotics Club with our Art Teacher Frank Altamirano, last school year. He is an asset to our school and we are very fortunate to have him on our team.”