In the past three years, Sam Sams has seen her life come full circle. A Frankfort native, the rigor alignment coach at Second Street School was named principal Saturday at a special-called early morning meeting.
In a unanimous decision, the SSS Site-Based Decision Making Council chose Sams, 31, to head the school after interviewing three candidates.
Sams will succeed Dewey Hensley, who has led the school for the past three years and will retire Aug. 1.
“Mr. Hensley set learning foundations and I wanted to step up and continue his work to take us to new places,” Sams told The State Journal Saturday afternoon. “He has given me a lot of opportunities to work with the community and parents.”
Though she was born and raised in Frankfort, Sams attended a Montessori school in Versailles through seventh grade before transferring to a private school for eighth grade. She graduated from Scott County High School and obtained her undergraduate degree at the University of Kentucky.
Sams earned her master’s degree in gifted education from Georgetown College and an education specialist and leadership degree from the University of the Cumberlands.
She taught in Woodford County for five years before coming to Second Street three years ago.
“I came to Frankfort because it’s special and provides unique learning opportunities for students,” she said. “Frankfort has been home and FIS is my home away from home.”
As rigor alignment coach — a position she described as an instructional coach — Sams works with all teachers in the building helping to create and analyze data from assessments, among other duties.
“She has worked tirelessly with students, staff and families the last several years,” FIS Superintendent Houston Barber wrote in an email to the Panther community. “We are so excited that she is going to lead Second Street School to another level.”
Among her first goals is to reach out to SSS stakeholders for their feedback on their hopes and dreams for the school.
Sams and her husband, Wesley, have a 15-month-old son, Witten. When she’s not spending time with her family, she’s at school.
“I am just so grateful for the love and support,” she added. “It’s reassured me in every way that this is the place for me.”