Get to know Ms.Baxter
February 6, 2023
Hamilton’s Principal, Ms. Jennifer Baxter, dreamed about being principal only about 10 years ago. She was an assistant principal for many years, but after being encouraged by female leaders, she decided to become a principal. “I wanted to bring my vision to a school where you come to school, you work hard, and you have fun being here,” Ms. Baxter said. Now that she’s here at Hamilton, her main message for all students is “don’t give up if you make mistakes.”
Ms. Baxter has been an educator since 1996. She was born in Wahiawa, Hawaii. In high school, Ms. Baxter was an athlete and peer counselor. She played soccer, volleyball, and softball. After graduating high school, Baxter started coaching at a college level. However, she soon realized that she was more of a teacher than a coach. “The lesson was more important than winning sometimes,” she said.
Working in education for quite some time now, Ms. Baxter has noticed an improvement in the education system. When she first started her career in education, a lot of teachers weren’t as interactive as they are now. “ I want to walk into a classroom where students are talking about their work,” she said. “For me as a learner, I have a lot of energy and I think I would have worked better in the way that we do things now.”
Being principal of a school that has more than 2,000 students can get hard sometimes, Ms. Baxter said. In order to rest and renew, she will do some self care. She’ll call a friend, hang out with her wife, or laugh with students out in the quad. When Ms.Baxter is not being a leader here at Hamilton, she’s enjoying her days off fishing and spending time with her family. She loves to read, watch movies, and be outdoors.
“She does a really good job of getting students involved. She does a lot for the school and she generally cares about the students and their well-being,” said Valerie Briones, a 12th grader in AMPA.