Veteran Teacher Andrea Hearden to Serve as Interim Principal for a Year


Carolyn Brown, Adviser, Online Tritonian

Monday’s email announcement by President Tom Kiely surprised everyone here at NDA, and the news that veteran science teacher Andrea Hearden would serve as interim principal prompted a plethora of responses. 

This is an exciting development,” said one teacher.  “I’m proud of her for taking on this challenge, and I think she’s a great person to steer the ship through really difficult waters.”

Another staff member said, “As a member of the search committee, I can verify that we all felt she was not only our choice, but God’s choice for the position.  She prayed about it, we all prayed about it, and like Tom Kiely said, ‘It’s the Spirit.’”

Hearden herself requested time to ponder the option, for she knew she’d have to leave the classroom for a year, and her response to the Tritonian indicated just that:   

“I am one of the happiest teachers you will ever meet.  I love my students and look forward to seeing them everyday.  Sometimes God asks us to grow in unexpected ways, and that is what has happened for me recently.  As the interim principal at Notre Dame, I am confident that I will learn more than I was ever able to teach any of my thousands of students.  After 31 years as a teacher, I will find new challenges as a leader. The most important way the community can support me as I begin this new path is by praying for my wisdom as I discern the best ways to serve the school I love.  Thank you for so much support and encouragement this week!”

“I think she will do the job well,” said another teacher. “She has the backbone and the institutional know-how to lead the school toward its next long-term steward.  And she is a woman of faith who understands what can foster young people’s faith and what can squash it.”

Students, on the other hand, are mainly concerned about who will replace her in the classroom, particularly the well-known ICP class for freshmen.