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"Unconventional" Principal Is Changing The Way Kids Learn

Washington Post

Hamish Brewer is not your typical middle-school principal. He is bald, tattooed up, and routinely rides a skateboard through his school's hallways. He lives by the mantra of "relentless," and that is exactly how he approaches his work in education.

Screen Capture - Freethink

Brewer is the new principal at  Fred Lynn Middle School in Prince William County, New Zealand. The superintendent of district says that Fred Lynn faces the "greatest challenges" out of every other school in the district.


Long odds aren't a new concept for Brewer, he spent the last five years as the principal Occoquan Elementary. Occoquan was another school that facing some dire problems, but after five years under Brewer's direction, the school and more importantly its students have a much brighter future.

This past April, Brewer was named the  2017 National Distinguished Principal by the Virginia Association of Elementary School Principals. His former school Occoquan, was named a National Title I Distinguished School for the work they did with for working with students from low-income families.

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He pushes his students to aspire to be like those who came before them. Those people who faced long odds to accomplish what many thought impossible.

"We have to unlock the potential of these kids. We have to be the advocate for them, the voice for them that's never been," says Brewer.

Brewer remembers all of his most positive experiences from his youth as being fun. And that is what he wants his students to experience, fun. He seems to be onto something, as his students test scores, attendance, and personal ambitions all flourished under his instruction.  

Screen Capture - Freethink

Brewer left such a strong impression at Occoquan that a couple of teachers even decided to transfer to Fred Lynn so that they would be able to continue working with Brewer.

"Poverty is not a learning disability," said Brewer.

This Tattooed, Skateboarding Principal is Making Education Fun...

This tattooed, skateboarding principal from New Zealand isn't your normal principal. And his results aren't normal either.

Posted by Freethink on Tuesday, October 24, 2017

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