SPRINGDALE, Ark. (KNWA/KFTA) — An assistant principal for the Springdale School District has been named the 2022 Assistant Principal of the Year.

According to a press release, Hunt Elementary School’s Patricia Athey was selected by the Arkansas Association of Elementary School Principals and honors in a surprise assembly on Dec. 5.

AAESP assistant executive director Mike Mertens presented Athey with the award at the assembly, which was attended by the school’s approximately 580 K through fifth-grade students.

“This award is in appreciation of your exemplary leadership in providing outstanding
educational opportunities to the children of Springdale School District and for your distinguished service as an educational leader in Arkansas,” Mertens told Athey at the assembly.

The Assistant Principal of the Year award is presented annually to an Arkansas elementary school assistant principal who has “succeeded in providing high-quality learning opportunities for students and is acknowledged by peers for exemplary contributions to the profession,” according to an AAESP press release.

“I’m very, very blessed to work in the Springdale School District with our leaders, and I’m even more blessed to be here at Hunt,” Athey said, acknowledging the contributions of the school’s and district’s support staff, teachers and leadership teams. “We work together to find innovative ways to meet the needs of the kids you see in this room,” she said. “I’m honored to represent Hunt and Springdale School District in the state of Arkansas, and I hope we can make you guys proud.”

Athey has served as Hunt’s assistant principal since 2017 and has worked to develop the
school’s Multi-Tiered Systems of Support and to expand access to school-based therapy,
according to the release