Clara Barton Open School in south Minneapolis has its first new principal in 20 years, and he’s coming from Edina.
Patrick A. Duffy, 37, of Golden Valley is coming to Barton from South View Middle School, where he’s been assistant principal for four years. He previously worked for Hopkins schools for 10 years as a junior and senior high school teacher and equity coordinator.
Duffy replaces retiring Steve DeLapp, after whom the school board recently approved the naming of the school commons. “I’m very passionate about how we can bring excellence and equity to all students,” Duffy said. He said much of his carrer has been dedicated to addressing the racial predictability of achievement and work on the many types of achievement gaps. "I wanted an opportunity to work in an urban setting particularly that shares many of my core values,” he said.
Duffy earned his administrative license, and all of his degrees, including his doctorate, from the University of Minnesota. He’s also worked as a diversity consultant for Carlson School of Management at the University of Minnesota and Bethel University.
DeLapp was the longest-serving active principal in Minneapolis Public Schools. “I really value his wisdom and the passion that he brought to the building,”Duffy said.
The school is one of two in Minneapolis using the open model of education. The arrival of open education here grew out of a federally funded program in the 1970s that introduced varying educational philosophies in southeast Minneapolis schools, where Marcy Open School is located. Open education emphasizes hands-on studies tailored to a student's learning style and interests.
Most principal changes for the 2012-13 school year were announced earlier this month, but late-announced departures from two schools mean additional openings remain to be filled. They are at Lake Nokomis Community School Keeyaydin campus and Pratt Community School.
“This is a transition for the whole school community,” said Lori Zook-Stanley. She’s co-chair of the school’s parent-staff site council and called DeLapp a “beloved leader.”
“It was exciting and reassuring to meet [Duffy], and to hear how his passions and values line up with what I see as Barton’s passions as well,” she said.
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