Former Principal of John Barry School, Meriden

On June 6, 2017, retired CAS Assistant Executive Director Earle Bidwell sat down to chat with Elsie Torres, supervisor of bilingual education for the Meriden Public Schools and former principal of John Barry School. With candor, passion and sincerity, Elsie shared the challenges she overcame and the successes she achieved during her four years as principal of the then struggling school which, when she arrived in 2012, had the highest poverty rate in the district and a 23% reading proficiency rate.

In reflecting on her efforts to transform John Barry from an under-achieving school to a highly effective learning community, Elsie offers fellow administrators three pieces of advice:

  • Maintain your humility;
  • Keep a healthy balance between your personal and professional life;
  • Leading with a students-first mentality will always get you to the right place.

Click below to hear Elsie’s inspiring story.

NOTE: For her successes at John Barry School, Elsie was named the Outstanding First Year Elementary School Principal in 2013.