Adams set on building on success as principal at Beechwood

Published 9:37 am Tuesday, July 18, 2017

David Adams, the new principal at Beechwood Elementary, has only been on the job for two weeks, but he has already bought in and the seven habits roll off his tongue without a thought in casual conversation.

“You have to plan with the end in mind, because if you don’t you are just floundering,” Adams said. “And yeah, it’s the seven habits and yeah I bought into it hook, line and sinker. It is a mindset.”

It was that mindset and the positive changes he saw happening throughout the Vicksburg Warren School District that drew him to Beechwood after spending the last 20 years working in Hinds County, first in Clinton and then Raymond and Utica.

For the past nine years he served as the principal at Utica Elementary Middle School before officially taking the job at Beechwood on July 1.

“I had been on the tipping point of coming, but loyalty is a wonderful thing,” Adams said. “The people that I was with and the people I was serving, my heart was with them and my heart in a way will always be with them.”

Adams has known VWSD superintendent Chad Shealy for years dating back to Shealy’s time in Hinds County. Adams said he saw what Vicksburg and Shealy doing and had heard good things about the system and realized it was something that we wanted to be a part of going forward.

“I had always respected [Shealy] and I had always respected his prowess at making change a good thing,” Adams said. “I am one of those people, I would rather sit around and listen and observe and see what goes on. That is what I did.

“I saw what he was doing, read about it, researched it, came and snuck around and looked and decided maybe it was time for change.”

Draped on the front of of Beechwood is a banner that reads “Beaming about our B, aiming for an A.” As he takes the reigns of a school on the rise, Adams said that his goal going forward is to continue to build on what has made Beechwood successful and to help take it the next level.

“I want to take what has been going on in this school and fine-tune it and make it even better,” Adams said. “I see so much possibility not just in the kids, but every parent I have met has been super anxious, super eager, just wonderful. All those dominoes are lining up and when you have that alignment the whole world is possible.”

Adams said that he is very data driven and one of his goals going forward is to improve the fifth grade science scores at Beechwood. His overarching goal is to make sure that the students are as prepared as they can be to move forward though.

“What are you trying to do in education?” Adams said. “You are trying to get children to become independent thinkers and prepare all of them no matter the level. You are trying to get them ready for life. Education is about kids.”

In the end, it was those very children that convinced him that Vicksburg and Beechwood in particular was where he was supposed to be.

“When I walked in here the first time the last week of May and I see little kindergarteners and first graders that are accepting,” Adams said. “I go to find out the school has a very large special education population and you have these children who are accepting and we are all together, working together. I think the Leader in Me calls it synergy, but you see this dynamic that is going on. You see this culture that is working and it is just awesome.”