FHC Welcomes Hillary Baker as New Assistant Principal

FHC Welcomes Hillary Baker as New Assistant Principal

Listener. Learner. Fair.

Hillary Baker, Forest Hills Central’s new assistant principal, used these three words to describe her approach to administration.

“Because I’ve been in different high school settings in different parts of the states,” Baker said, “I think I bring a new perspective. I think I can bring my background in diversity. I think I can bring my background in supporting teachers.”

Following an extensive application and hiring process, Baker was chosen over around 100 other candidates for the open position of vice principal.

The process began with a job posting, in which the applicants were narrowed down to about 30 chosen resumes. From there, an essay was required, which determined six thorough candidates, furthermore trimmed to three after a set of interviews. A final choice could finally be reached after an extensive interview process involving administrators, teachers, assistant superintendents, parents, and a few select students.

And thus, Baker was selected. Rightfully so, according to FHC principal Steve Passinault.

“We feel we selected a very quality candidate who is going to really be successful,” Passinault said. “We need a leader with an emphasis on instruction to both teachers and students.”

Baker evidently holds merit if she successfully contested around 100 other candidates, but what in particular grants her this merit? According to her, experience.

She is entering her 23rd year in education. Graduating with a “masters in secondary education from the University of Michigan,” Baker became a teacher. And for 22 years, she maintained her career of teaching, most recently at East Kentwood, where she held a particularly special position.

“[Baker] not only taught with the AP (advanced placement) program [at East Kentwood],” said Passinault, “but she also held a position in which she acted as a teacher coach. She worked with and helped individual teachers, sometimes newer teachers, because of her reputation and expertise as an instructor herself.”

So, although her new position is technically her first administrative job, Baker brings to the table an assortment of higher-instructional experience. Her history of teaching gives her a perspective of education integral to administration, particularly in regard to students and teachers.

According to Baker, she is “fair in regards to really listening to students and staff and making tough decisions, but also fair in making sure there’s some consistency, fairness, and reasoning behind the decisions.”

She will be willing to talk to students, to communicate to reach results, and to achieve her goals with a final emphasis on learning.

“In my heart, I’m still an educator,” Baker said. “Even though I may not be in the classroom all of the time, I’m still an educator. I want to bring that positivity and wish to model that life is always about continuous learning.”