The new Lady's Island Middle School principal, Mona Lise Dickson, brings to the job a unique perspective: years as a Lady's Island Middle School parent.
"I know the community and the school," said Dickson, whose four children attended between 1996 and 2011.
The Beaufort County School District announced Monday that Dickson will succeed the school's former principal, Martin Wright, who left Beaufort County for another job.
"I'm very excited and enthusiastic about being there," Dickson said. "It's a great school, and I just love the opportunity that it's given me to be, basically, home."
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Dickson said she will develop objectives for the school as she meets with parents and teachers and hopes to continue those conversations even after she's in the job.
"One of my goals is to revitalize the community -- keep that collaboration going on with the parents and the staff," she said.
For the past three years, Dickson was principal at Whale Branch Middle School, where she helped start a STEM program -- a curriculum based on science, technology, engineering and math. Earlier, she was an assistant principal at Beaufort High School, where she also coached the girl's basketball teams to 255 wins in 14 seasons before stepping down in 2008.
"Mona Lise Dickson is a strong leader and highly qualified educator," said Beaufort County School District superintendent Valerie Truesdale in a news release. "We look forward to the expansion of the STEM initiative at Lady's Island and continued engagement of the community."
Dickson's move to Lady's Island leaves Whale Branch Middle School without a principal.
District community services coordinator Carol McMillan said candidates for that position are being interviewed, and the district hopes to fill the vacancy before students return in August.
Follow reporter Kyle Peterson at twitter.com/EyeOnBeaufortCo.