Barb Schwamman
Barb Schwamman

School Administrators of Iowa announced Barb Schwamman, prekindergarten through eighth grade principal in the South Winneshiek Community School District, is a nominee for the 2012 Iowa Elementary Principal of the Year award.

"We are pleased to recognize school leaders who are committed to excellence in education and serve as role models of learning in their communities," said Dan Smith, SAI executive director.

Schwamman was nominated by her peers for the award. She will be recognized at SAI's awards banquet Aug. 7 in Des Moines.

"It was a big surprise when I got the email about being nominated, it means a lot when your peers recognize you for your hard work.  The nomination is a real tribute to the team we have at South WInneshiek. Our staff has worked very hard to make our school the best it can be for kids. Our administrative team is committed to excellence and is very supportive," Schwamman said.

Before coming to South Winn as principal in 2007, she was a sixth grade teacher and coach for seven years in the Howard Winneshiek Schools.

Prior to that, she spent four years as a primary teacher and coach at the Hampton-Dumont Schools. She began her career with one year as a sixth grade teacher at Newman Catholic School (in Mason City). She received her bachelor's degree in elementary education and early childhood education from the University of Northern Iowa, master's from Viterbo University in La Crosse, Wis., principal endorsement from the Iowa Principal Leadership Academy and is currently working toward a superintendent's endorsement at UNI.

"My philosophy has been that each and every child can learn and needs a well rounded education that promotes independence and lifelong learning.  School should be a place where students can attain skills that help them in the achieving their goals and in being successful citizens in the 21st Century.  This also means helping teachers become the best they can be in the area they teach.  Being a PK-8 principal is a challenging job,  but one that is very rewarding when you see the successes our students have and the growth that that make each year," Schwamman said.

SAI, a statewide organization founded in 1987, represents more than 1,800 Iowa educational administrators. SAI's mission is to enhance PreK-12 education.