Nicole Girvan will become Charlotte Preparatory School's next head of lower school this summer. Girvan, who starts July 7, was chosen from more than 50 candidates following a national search.
Girvan brings experience and expertise as both an educator and a leader. During her 18-year career, she has taught in every lower school grade level and has demonstrated collaborative leadership as an administrator.
"Nicole is a professional and creative team-player, a natural leader," said Head of School Blair Fisher. "She is someone who builds a culture of enthusiasm and encouragement among students and teachers alike."
Girvan said Charlotte Prep's welcoming community and educational vision were a perfect match for her. “I knew immediately this was the school where I wanted to be," she says. "It is obvious how dedicated the teachers are, how collaborative the administrators are and how committed the parents are. My family and I look forward to getting to know everyone and being part of such a warm and wonderful school."
Since 2008, Girvan has served as head of lower school at Browne Academy in Alexandria, Va. She is moving from one state to another, but she will find a familiar culture when she arrives at Charlotte Prep. Like Charlotte Prep, Browne Academy is a pre-kindergarten through eighth-grade college-preparatory school that serves fewer than 400 students, with approximately 40 percent coming from diverse cultural backgrounds. Girvan's knowledge and belief in the PK-8 model drew her to Charlotte Prep, and vice versa.
While Browne Academy's head of lower school, Girvan led the adoption of a new science curriculum aligned with STEM and twenty-first century learning skills, implemented an iPad pilot program for students and teachers and adopted new reading and writing programs based on the research of Lucy Caulkins.
Girvan intends to bring one special tradition to her new school. She plans to host student "lunch buddies" in her office twice a week, as she has for years at Browne Academy.
"Eating lunch with students is one way to really know and understand who they are, where they have been and what they have to offer," Girvan says.
Prior to joining Browne Academy, Girvan was head of lower school at Wyoming Seminary college-preparatory school, in Pennsylvania's Wyoming Valley, and was an instructor at Slippery Rock University, Fort Belvoir Elementary School, in Virginia, and The Ellis School, in Pittsburgh, Penn.
Girvan received a bachelor's degree in Child Development and a Master of Arts in Teaching (M.A.T.) in Elementary Education, both from the University of Pittsburgh. She has completed more than fifty credits toward a doctorate in Instructional Leadership from Duquesne University and George Washington University.
She and her husband, Rob Morris, have three sons.
Charlotte Preparatory School is a private independent pre-kindergarten through eighth grade college-preparatory institution that currently attracts approximately 385 students from throughout the Charlotte region. For more than forty years, Charlotte Preparatory School has provided an extraordinary educational experience founded on academic excellence, character development and leadership in a culturally diverse community.