Hays CISD hires two new principals

The shuffle of administrators and principals within Hays CISD continued last week as board trustees approved the hiring of new leaders for Tom Green and Tobias Elementary schools.

Joy Philpott, the district’s Director of Assessment and Accountability, was named as the next principal at Tom Green Elementary, according to a district press release.

Alisa DiPalma

Joy Philpott

Philpott had been serving as the acting principal at Tom Green since the beginning of the school year.

Hays CISD’s move to bring Philpott to a more permanent role comes after the district planned to have Tracie Robinson, the former principal at Hemphill Elementary, as the school’s next leader in May.

The district had planned to swap the principals from Tom Green and Hemphill Elementary schools. Cynthia Vasquez, the former principal at Tom Green, took over the principal position at Hemphill.

Tim Savoy, Hays CISD public information officer, said Robinson instead took a job as the administrator of curriculum and instructional support, which is under the Chief Academic Officer.

Savoy said Robinson’s move was not done as a result of pushback from the community due to the planned principal swap.

Philpott is a career educator with more than 20 years of experience as a teacher, campus leader, academic dean and senior school district administrator.

“Philpott is a professional with exceptional talent. She is wonderful with students, parents and staff members, and she knows what it takes to create engaging educational experiences,” Savoy said in a statement. “She will be able to continue the rich traditions that make Tom Green Elementary a point-of-pride for Hays CISD and help to bring new opportunities to the school.”

Hays CISD trustees also approved the hiring of Alisa DiPalma as the new principal for Tobias Elementary.

DiPalma, who has been an educator in Hays CISD for 15 years, began her education career as a 4th and 5th grade teacher in Arizona before moving to the Hays CISD community with her family.

She started in the district at Hemphill Elementary School in 2002 and became a 1st grade teacher at Tobias Elementary School in 2003.

DiPalma taught at Tobias for three years before becoming an instructional strategist at Buda Elementary School. She also served as a master teacher at Blanco Vista Elementary School before being named assistant principal of Tobias Elementary School in 2010.

DiPalma also served as the 5th grade summer school principal in 2014 and 2015 and the bilingual summer school principal in 2016. In 2016, she was a finalist for the Hays CISD Assistant Principal of the Year.

DiPalma said she views a “collaborative school community” as essential to the education of students, with emphasis on making “diligent progress toward mastery of learning” for students.

“Through wise use of instructional time, setting high expectations for learning, and creating attainable and measurable goals for achievement, I know Tobias Elementary will be the school where students want to attend and teachers want to lead,” DiPalma said.

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