Myra Wright Powell
William W. Borden Elementary School
West Clark Community Schools
Borden, Indiana

As Myra Powell knows, the principal of a rural, small-town school wears many hats. “I serve as principal, assistant principal, athletic director, part-time counselor, and sometimes the secretary, too,” she notes. Yet Powell’s many responsibilities have not kept her from expanding school activities to benefit students and their families. When she arrived at Borden Elementary 16 years ago, the school hosted three yearly events for families, including an open house and parent-teacher conferences. Powell has greatly expanded opportunities for families to visit the campus beyond the school day for learning and fun. The school now offers evenings of family-oriented educational activities, parent learning sessions that include child-sitting services, and events that showcase students’ academic and artistic achievements. Under Powell, the kindergarten through grade 6 school also established a Community Council composed of parent representatives of all school attendance areas and populations. This group suggests improvements in the areas of school safety, procedures, and academic support. Powell also has spearheaded extracurricular athletic, arts, and academic programs to build her 375 students’ wide-ranging talents and capabilities. In recent years, Borden Elementary has won several statewide academic honors. It received recognition as an “Exemplary Progress” school in its state in 2006 and won Indiana Student Achievement “Top Gainer” awards in 2007 and 2007. Powell earned a B.S. from Indiana University Southeast in New Albany and an M.S. from Indiana University in Bloomington.