What Principals did in High School


(From left to right) Assistant Principal Ryan Labay, Principal Mark Grisdale, Assistant Principal Andrew Lowry, Assistant Principal Shalonda Dumas, Assistant Principal Tammy Laurence, Assistant Principal Kristine Copeland

Maddie Fossitt, Staff Writer

Students often think of principals as strict enforcers or daunting figures, but they were like us in high school at one time. Here is what Tompkins’ principals have to say about their high school experiences:

Mark Grisdale/Principal: I played basketball, football and ran track, and performed in school plays for the junior and senior class. I went to a school that had about 800 students, and my experience was fun in the sense that you knew almost everyone in your grade. My team traveled long distances to compete against other schools, and those bus trips were always memorable.
Ryan Labay/Associate Principal: I played baseball, football and ran track, was a member of NHS and student council. My senior year our baseball team won the Texas state championship and that was a big deal for our community. My father was the head coach, and I thought that was pretty cool to play and practice with him. I had a great group of friends and a small community that made my high school experience memorable.

Tammy Laurence/12th Grade Assistant Principal: I went to Taylor High School my junior and senior year, and played basketball, volleyball and ran track. I loved playing sports. The time I spent with my teammates, traveling and laughing on the bus were some of my most memorable moments. I had a great English teacher that prepared me for college that I’ll never forget.
Shalonda Dumas /11th Grade Assistant Principal: In high school I was an athlete and played basketball, volleyball and was track manager. I was also on the Homecoming and Sweetheart Court, and involved in the business organization, CLOSE-UP. One of my most memorable experiences was going to Cancun, Mexico, senior year with my friends and a few chaperones. It was amazing.
Kristine Copeland/10th Grade Assistant Principal: In high school, I was part of the dance team and community service organization. I loved being on the dance team. I remember high school being a really fun time, and I liked meeting other students.

Andrew Lowry/9th Grade Assistant Principal: I was involved in a lot of clubs and electives. I was in BETA club (similar to FORCE), a competitive swimmer on the varsity team, science club president, student council vice president, and theatre. In my senior year of high school, our school got a new principal, and myself and other students on the Advisory Council, told her of fake, strange traditions our school had. Because the principal was new, she wasn’t aware of every event or tradition our school had, so we could convince her to do crazy stuff like, giving the Advisory Council a key to the building. She didn’t go with everything we said, but it was fun to mess with her.