Cheryl B. WarleyCheryl B. Warley
J.O. Wilson Elementary School
District of Columbia Public Schools
Washington, D.C.

Cheryl Warley oversaw a renovation of her school’s grounds that culminated with her opening a state-of-the-art playground this year. To improve the school’s yard and its once-shabby library, Warley built community partnerships and rallied support. In response to her efforts, civic organizations provided funds, services, and volunteers. In 2004, Warley dedicated a newly renovated school library. She has been principal of J.O. Wilson Elementary since 2002. The urban Pre-K-5 school serves a high-poverty student population of 347. Under her leadership, the school has raised student achievement and sustained the gains, making Annual Yearly Progress for four consecutive years. Warley has engaged her staff in boosting student learning through her strong, supportive leadership. She implemented many organizational changes to promote best practices. The revamped schedule she developed provides a two-hour block of uninterrupted time for literacy and a 90-minute block for mathematics. Warley also has provided teacher training targeted to school goals. To overcome her school’s lack of an assistant principal, she has cultivated teacher leaders and delegated tasks to other staff members. “It is extremely important that I monitor and prioritize daily what I expect to get accomplished,” she says. “I consistently analyze and collect data to monitor student achievement.” She received a B.S. from South Carolina State College, an M.Ed. from National-Louis University in Illinois, and an M.Ed. from George Mason University in Virginia.