Jun 8, 2010

Hammond High School's Principal, Mr. Burke, is Retiring

A Message from Principal Burke

Change in Leadership…
I began my career at Oakland Mills Middle School in the Fall of 1975 as a social studies teacher. The next step on my professional path as a teacher led me to spend 10 years at Harper’s Choice Middle School, followed by two years at Owen Brown Middle School. My administrative career began in 1989 at Ellicott Mills Middle School, where I was elevated to the position of Principal in January of 1992. My tenure at Patuxent Valley Middle School began in the Fall of 1996. After ten years at Patuxent Valley, I transitioned to the position of Principal at Hammond High School. Now, after 35 years as an educator in the Howard County Public School System, I have decided to retire. My retirement is effective July 1, 2010, with my last duty day being June 30, 2010. I do not know who will become the Principal of Hammond High School, but I am confident the selection by the Superintendent and his advisors will be made carefully and thoughtfully.

Over the past 14 years, I have served the greater Patuxent Valley Middle/ Hammond High School community. I have used all of my training, expertise, and commitment to work toward creating a standard of excellence in academic performance and citizenship for the students in my charge. I expect them to continue to strive for excellence, even in my absence. I am honored that so many parents over the years have entrusted their precious children to me to educate and keep safe. My expectation of myself has been to reveal my passion for educating the children of this community and expressing my sincere love for the families of Hammond on a daily basis.

I would like to share one of my favorite quotes with you. This reflects the driving force that resulted in my becoming a teacher and has enabled me to prosper in this wonderful business for so long.

“Some men see things as they are and say why, I dream things that never were and say why not?” Robert F. Kennedy

Teachers and other staff members of my schools have always been important to me. Part of my mission has been to make sure they have all they need to service the parents, students and the general school community. I always believed that, as long as I put the needs of the children first when deciding the direction to take as a teacher or an administrator, I would never go wrong. In my 35 year career, I do not regret maintaining that position. Please know that I could not have picked a better place than Hammond High School to complete this very long and interesting “book” of my life.

Thank You… And Goodbye.


You are invited to come and extend best wishes to Principal Burke at a community-wide reception in honor of his retirement. The celebration will be held on Monday, June 21st from 6:30pm-8:30pm in the Media Center and Cafeteria at Hammond High School. More details will be coming soon!

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