Eight New Principals to Lead Area Catholic Schools This Fall

Monday, August 24, 2015

WASHINGTON – When the bells ring in the new school year, eight Catholic elementary schools in the Archdiocese of Washington will be led by new principals. The new principals are Margaret Durney at St. John the Evangelist, Silver Spring, Md., Scott Farren at St. Mary School of Piscataway, Clinton, Md., Janet Schrom at St. Pius X Regional School, Bowie, Md., Linda Bourne at Archbishop Neale School, LaPlata, Md., Deborah Thomas at Our Lady of Mercy School, Potomac, Md., Zachary Hooker at St. Joseph Regional School, Beltsville, Md., Katrina Fernandez at St. Mary of the Mills School, Laurel, Md. and Marvin Reid at Holy Family School, Hillcrest Heights, Md.


Our Lady of Mercy School – Deborah Thomas will join Our Lady of Mercy School in Potomac. She previously served as principal of Immaculate Heart of Mary School in the Archdiocese of Baltimore for four years, assistant principal and teacher at School of the Cathedral of Mary Our Queen for nine years. Deborah stated, “Today, Catholic educators play a pivotal role in teaching and passing on the beliefs and traditions of our faith. In my school service to the greater community that enables children to live the teachings of Jesus, interdisciplinary religious instruction and religious celebrations are essential elements.”

St. John the Evangelist – Margaret Durney comes to St. John the Evangelist School in Silver Spring from The Academy of the Holy Cross in Kensington, where she served as Assistant Principal for Student Services. Margaret stated, “I believe in children – in their innate goodness, enthusiasm, optimism and compassion. A great school will nurture these traits and use them as a starting point for an exciting and rigorous educational journey.” She is currently a Ph.D. candidate in Instructional Leadership for a Changing Population at Notre Dame University of Maryland, Baltimore, Md.


Holy Family School – Marvin Reid will be the interim principal for Holy Family School in Hillcrest Heights. Marvin is the former associate principal of Paul Robeson Middle School Complex in Bronx, N.Y. He was also previously a senior consultant for the Aura Group, where he was responsible for the evaluation of multiple school districts’ learning environments and curriculum. When asked what has prepared him to be a Catholic school leader, Marvin stated, “My life experiences coupled with my professional and personal experiences taught me to temper discipline and instruction with a deep abiding respect and concern for humanity; further, I am of the belief that if we truly train our children the way they should go, when they get old they will not depart from it. I am a living witness.”

St. Joseph Regional School – Zachary Hooker is interim principal of St. Joseph Regional School in Beltsville. Zach is a former first grade teacher at the school and is a certified principal who recently received his MA in Administration. He has a dual certified elementary educator, with certifications from New York State in Childhood Education Grades 1-6 and Students with Disabilities Grades 1-6. Zach has five years of teaching experience for Baltimore County Public Schools at Hernwood Elementary School. Zach has served in the United States Marine Corps Reserve.

St. Mary of the Mills School – Katrina Fernandez comes to St. Mary of the Mills School in Laurel with a bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education and a Master’s degree in Educational Leadership. Before coming to St. Mary of the Mills, Katrina was the Director of Admissions & Student Recruitment at Don Bosco Cristo Rey High School. Last year, Katrina completed the Emerging Leaders Program with other Prince Georges County future principals, a national training program that develops transformational school leaders across the country. When asked about being a principal of a Catholic school Katrina stated, “A Catholic school’s primary mission and vision should be to educate students effectively and form disciples of Christ. It is the responsibility of the school leader to provide a path to realizing this vision. As a Catholic school leader I place an emphasis on high academic standards and a strong Catholic identity.”

St. Mary School of Piscataway – Scott Farren comes to St. Mary School of Piscataway from Archbishop Neale School where he taught religion and fifth grade. Scott is a recent graduate of Marymount University where he earned an MA degree in Administration and Supervision. Scott stated, “This position is more than just a job, it is a life. I am ready to live that life and I know that God has called me to this leadership position.”

St. Pius X Regional School – Janet Schrom has been named principal at St. Pius Regional School in Bowie after having has served as assistant principal, counselor and teacher at the school since 1979. Janet is a certified principal with a MA degree in Administration and Supervision and stated, “I want each child that enters St. Pius to leave with a stronger Catholic identity than when they entered. I want our students to go out and be good disciples of our faith.”


Archbishop Neale School – Linda Bourne has been named principal at Archbishop Neale School where for the past ten years, she has served as first grade teacher, a junior high science teacher and vice principal. Linda stated, “As a Principal I will strive to maintain high standards already in place for our students while actively working with the community to ensure that we stay at the forefront of Catholic education.”


The Archdiocese of Washington is home to over 620,000 Catholics, 139 parishes and 95 Catholic schools, located in Washington, D.C., and five Maryland counties: Calvert, Charles, Montgomery, Prince George’s and St. Mary’s.

Chieko Noguchi
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