Celebrating National Principals Month: Debbie Brooks, Auburn City Schools

Debbie Brooks
Pick Elementary
Auburn City Schools

 Debbie Brooks is principal at Auburn City’s Pick Elementary School, which serves 500 students in grades 3-5. She became Pick’s first principal in the fall of 2013 after serving as principal of Carey Woods Elementary. During her time teaching in Auburn City she was twice named district elementary teacher of the year, in two different schools.

How long have you been a principal?

I have been in administration for the last 16 years with Auburn City Schools.

Briefly describe your education journey.

I just started my 32nd year as an Alabama educator. I received my BS in Elementary Education from Samford University in 1987. I received my MA in Elementary Education in 1991 and my Ed.S. in Elementary Education from UAB in 1994. I taught grades 1st-6th in three systems over 16 years: Fairfield City Schools, the Tarrant City Schools, and Auburn City Schools.

I’m married to an Alabama educator, Richy Brooks, who works with the Alexander City Schools System and I am mother to 3 wonderful boys.

What are 2-3 insights you would share with others who want to become principals?

Let me share some beliefs. I believe that building strong relationships is one of the most important aspects of my job. Building school culture on the foundation of relationships is the key to any school’s success. I am inspired by the students, the teachers and the parents I work with each day.

This year, our school theme is “BE”. I feel we can all “Be The Difference” in our students’ lives by impacting them both inside and outside of the academic arena when we are committed to their success. I am honored to be a part of each students’ academic journey in the short time I have them at my school.

What keeps you up at night and what gets you out of bed in the morning?

What keep me up at night and gets me up in the morning is the adventure each day brings! No two days are alike and I am energized by the endless possibilities each one brings. Being “present” is very important to me so I work hard each day to be in classrooms and engaged with our total school program.

It is important to me to stay connected to the classroom, so any chance I get, I sub when needed and that keeps me grounded and humble. Most importantly, it reminds me why I love my profession and why I am proud to say “I TEACH”.