The untimely death of former Hillside principal Earl Pappy



Earl Pappy, former principal of Hillside High School, died Sunday, according to the brief obituary that ran in The News & Observer and a story yesterday in The Herald-Sun. He was only 51.

I, among others, was surprised to hear that Pappy died so young. Although the end of his three-year tenure was marked by controversy, the beginning was full of high hopes. Here, I'd like to share a 2007 profile (PDF) I wrote for The News & Observer about Pappy. In the month or so I spent shadowing him for the story, I was impressed by his polished affect and the taxing tasks he was taking on, between trying to reform a school and attending executive leadership courses to become a better principal.

Though some question the effect he had on student behavior and academic development at Hillside, there's no question that the man tried tirelessly to bring about change.

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