Veteran educators fill vacancies

Almond, Morillo and Lawton named principals
Posted on 06/21/2017
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Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Education veterans selected as principals
at three Beaufort County district schools

BEAUFORT – A trio of veteran educators was announced today to fill the top leadership posts at three district schools:  Beaufort High, Whale Branch Middle and Robert Smalls International Academy.

“This is a strong group of proven administrators who are well qualified to take on their new positions,” said Jeff Moss.  “I’m confident they will all do terrific jobs.”

The new principals are:

  • Bonnie Almond, Beaufort High School – Almond is a 32-year education veteran who has served in North Carolina schools as a teacher, assistant principal, elementary school principal and high school principal.  She was honored as Lee County Schools Principal of the Year in 2007-08.  In 2013 she moved to Beaufort County, where she served as Director of Secondary Education and later as Director of Innovation.  Almond has a Bachelor’s Degree from Meredith College and a Master’s Degree in School Administration from North Carolina State University.  She replaces Corey Murphy, who recently accepted an administrative position in a Virginia school system.
  • Jennifer Morillo, Robert Smalls International Academy – Morillo is a veteran principal and district-level administrator.  After serving as an assistant principal at Lady’s Island Middle School, she was named principal of Beaufort Elementary School in 2009.  The school earned Palmetto Silver Awards for student achievement in 2012 and 2013, as well as Teacher Advancement Program awards in 2011, 2012 and 2013.  Since 2013, Morillo has served as the Beaufort County School District’s Director of Teaching and Learning.  She has a Bachelor’s Degree from the University of South Carolina and a Master’s Degree in Educational Leadership from Charleston Southern University.  Morillo replaces Nicole Holloman, who is leaving the district to take an administrative position in the Atlanta area.
  • Freddie Lawton, Whale Branch Middle School – Lawton, an assistant principal at Whale Branch Middle for the past four years, previously served in assistant principal roles at Okatie and St. Helena elementary schools, and also for six years as a classroom teacher at Port Royal Elementary.  Lawton has been a presenter at state and regional professional development conferences, and he participated in the South Carolina Department of Education’s Aspiring Principals Program in 2011-2012.  He has a Bachelor’s Degree and a Master’s Degree in Elementary Education from the University of South Carolina, as well as a Master’s Degree in Administration and Supervision from Charleston Southern University.  Lawton replaces Chad Cox, recently named as the new principal at Battery Creek High following the retirement of Principal Edmond Burnes.