Clendaniel to retire, search begins for new T.C. principal

William Clendaniel, T.C. Williams High School’s principal since June of 2008, announced Monday that he will finish his two years of service and retire at the end of this school year. 

Clendaniel, who previously retired as principal at Langley High School in Fairfax, was hired to lead the school through a period of transition after his predecessor, Mel Riddle, resigned. That temporary agreement turned into a two-year stint as the T.C. Williams community grew into its new building.

“I have thoroughly enjoyed the time I have spent here and am still in awe of the tremendous effort put forth by the teachers and staff at T.C. Williams High School on behalf of the students in the City of Alexandria,” Clendaniel said. “The students are an incredible mix of energy and talent.”

Superintendent Morton Sherman had talked with Clendaniel about the need for a commitment of three to five more years to see the school through its next stage of development, but that was more than the principal wished to make, according to a school spokesperson.

“Bill has done a remarkable job for the past two years,” Sherman said. “He has led the school in a time of great change. We are deeply appreciative of his leadership and dedication to the students of Alexandria.”

The school has established a “visioning committee” made up of staff, students and community members to shape its direction for the future. ACPS expects a significant number of applicants for the opening and will hire a search firm to identify the best candidates, a spokesperson said. The new T.C. principal is expected to start on July 1, 2010.

St. Stephen’s students fill plates with nutrition knowledge 

Myrtle McCulloch, a clinical assistant professor of nutrition in the schools of medicine and nursing at Georgetown University, paid a visit to St. Stephen’s / St. Agnes middle school students last week, providing them with some top-notch insight into reading food labels for valuable information.

McCulloch gave an interactive media presentation in which students were encouraged to bring a favorite food or beverage item to the assembly to put their label-reading skills to use. McCulloch reviewed the basics food groups, healthful and non-healthful food items and surprised the students with the fact that not all processed foods are unhealthy, such as milk and frozen vegetables.  

One of her more pointed bits of advice? Don’ drink your calories. “Be sure to read the labels on fruit drinks,” McCulloch said. “What you think is a healthy fruit drink is usually loaded with sugar and calories.”  

T.C. entrepreneurs nab cash prizes

Two students from Mary Ellen McCormick’s entrepreneurship class at T.C. Williams earned prizes late last month at the Network for Teaching Entrepreneurship’s Greater Washington Regional Business Plan Competition held in Washington. 

Senior Dylan Clifton won $200 as a finalist after presenting his business idea, Cookie Crumbs Bakery, a small cookie business that earns big cash. Ernest Grant, a junior, took home $150 for his business, Distant Reality Studios, a music production company operated out of his own house. Both students won an in-class business plan competition in their third-period T.C. class before advancing to the D.C. competition.