“When I walked onto the Hun campus for an interview, I immediately felt at home,” said Ms. Anderson, who is The Hun Middle School’s new assistant head. “I felt a sense of warmth and community here, a positive vibe, and knew that I would fit in.”
And fit in she has. Ms. Anderson, who has taught math and coached field hockey, basketball, and lacrosse for the last three years here, brings nearly 20 years of teaching and coaching experience to her new position.
Ms. Anderson says her goal as the assistant head is to take as much administrative work off the plates of her teachers as possible, so that they can devote the majority of their time to instruction and their students.
“My job is to make teachers’ lives easier, so they can focus on teaching and I can take care of everything else,” said Ms. Anderson, who will continue to coach and teach two math classes. “The students benefit from a more inspired faculty and richer curriculum.”
Her colleagues have great confidence in her ability to do that.
“Jen is an endless source of energy,” said Middle School math teacher and coach David Smith. “It is amazing how much enthusiasm she brings to school day-in and day-out, and she will be an amazing assistant head. She has already done so many things to make life better, more relaxed, and more fun for the students and faculty alike!”
Mr. Smith pointed at teacher-run workshops Ms. Anderson has started that allow educators to share information on topics they are passionate about. “She’s already instituted ways for teachers to grow and become better teachers,” said Mr. Smith. “That benefits all of us and translates into a better education for our students.”
“Jen Anderson has been a capable leader since she arrived at Hun,” said middle school Head of School Ken Weinstein. “She brings out the best in everyone—
kids and teachers alike—and we are so lucky to have her here!"
Ms. Anderson, who grew up in Yardley, Pennsylvania, attended the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where she majored in economics and political science, minored in chemistry, and played Division 1 field hockey. After graduating in 1989, she worked briefly in Washington, D.C. and returned to Chapel Hill to take pre-med courses. However, she realized while coaching high school field hockey there, “that my passion was working with children,” she said.
After teaching and coaching at St. Stephen’s Episcopal School in Austin, Texas, for 17 years, Ms. Anderson returned to her hometown of Yardley, Pennsylvania, and took a job at The Hun School.
She is looking forward to the big changes underway, with the renovation of the middle school’s Alexander K. Buck ’49 Building, which will be completed for school in September 2017.
“The building is going to be amazing, but what makes our school really special are the connections between students, and between students and teachers,” she said of the 99 middle schoolers and her staff. “We try to create a culture of kindness and appreciation for all the hard work that the students and teachers do, and I look forward to helping create that culture.”