This year, Long Beach Middle School Principal, Mrs. Johanna Hughey, was selected as the district Administrator of the Year. Hughey began her career as a student teacher at Long Beach in 1997 and in 1999 started teaching full time. She taught in Long Beach for 10 years before temporarily moving to Florida with her family for her husband’s military career.
In 2012, Long Beach was happy to have Hughey return to educating Bearcats at Long Beach High School. Following her move back to the Coast, Hughey briefly worked in curriculum and instruction for another district before returning to Long Beach as Assistant Principal at Long Beach Middle School.
Four years later, Hughey accepted the position of Principal at W. J. Quarles Elementary for one year before returning to the school where her heart truly lies to lead as Principal of Long Beach Middle School.
Throughout her career in Long Beach, Hughey also has served as Dance Team sponsor, Cheer Team sponsor and JV Cheer sponsor. This is her 24th year in education and she continues to be the best at her practice by going on to earn her master’s degree and her National Boards.
“Her loyalty, commitment and support to her students, faculty and staff are undeniable,” Long Beach School District Superintendent Dr. Talia Lock said of Hughey. “She remains a cheerleader to everyone in her school and pushes them to do their best. It was an honor to announce Mrs. Hughey as the Long Beach Administrator of the Year.”
This year’s Teacher of the Year is Long Beach High School (LBHS)’s Brandy Zink. She is a National Board Certified teacher with 17 years teaching experience.
Zink’s dedication to her students and the community is evident not only in her classroom, but in her activities outside the classroom as well. She is involved with youth ministry at her church, has volunteered as a youth cheer coach, co-sponsors National Technical Honor Society (NTHS) at LBHS and serves as the state conference chair, coaches the LBHS Cheerleading Squad, and organizes community pep rallies and so much more.
“Anything she is asked to help with, she doesn’t just do, she takes it and runs with it,” stated Dr. Lock. “When asked to help the student council spirit committee, host special pep rallies, plan and host a Senior Send-Off and a million other things, she goes above and beyond to make the vision better than what anyone thought it could be.”
When asked why she does what she does, in a nutshell, Zink will tell you that her goal every day is to leave students just a little better than they were when they walked into her classroom.
She is determined to find out what her students really need and then she tries to provide it as best she can. Her goal is to not only reach students in her classroom, but all students she comes across and to provide a safe haven in her room where students know that she truly cares and is available.
Not only does Zink do this, but she also teaches her standards and excels at it.
“Because she teaches with passion and energy and her students know she cares, her students always pass the English II test and make tremendous growth. That doesn’t just happen by accident, but with hard work and dedication,” Lock said of Zink.
Hughey and Zink will now go on to represent Long Beach School District and compete against teachers and administrators from across the state for the honor of being named Mississippi Administrator and Teacher of the Year.