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National Principals Month Profile: Tara Burney, Principal of Midway Hills Primary School


Baldwin native Tara Burney has been working in education for 23 years. This year marks her third year serving as principal of Midway Hills Primary. In her opinion, the best part about being a school leader at the primary school is a delightful combination of the amazing teachers, students and parents that make Midway Hills Primary the absolute best place to work.

“We have students who are eager to learn. They work hard every day to accomplish their academic goals. The teachers are dedicated, hardworking people who sacrifice a lot for others. They are flexible when necessary and they work harder than any other profession. Finally, parents of students at MHP are the most supportive parents of any school I have worked for. They are passionate and do what is necessary to make sure their children are receiving the best education possible.”

Through her eyes, there is an overall loving atmosphere to the primary school which creates a family oriented working environment.

“The atmosphere at MHP is warm, welcoming, and inviting. There is a strong spirit of love for all, no matter what differences we may have.”

Mrs. Burney is a product of the local public school system. Born and raised in Baldwin County, she grew up in the town of Harrisburg where she attended the old Midway and Harrisburg Elementary school. After graduating from Baldwin High School, she began her journey into education by attending Georgia College & State University. She earned a Bachelor of Science in Early Childhood Education, a Masters of Education in Educational Leadership and Administration and a Specialist of Education in Educational Leadership.

Prior to being an administrator, Mrs. Burney spent time in the classroom as a teacher, having taught Kindergarten, 2nd, and 5th grades.

Her favorite thing to do outside of school is spend time with her family. She is the wife of Pastor Hansel Burney Jr. and the mother to five beautiful children—four boys and one girl (Jatarius, Alexis, Hansel III, Joshua, and Solomon). She is also the grandmother to her granddaughter Kaidyn Marie Watkins. She is the proud daughter of Mrs. Dorothy Bolston and the late Nathaniel Bolston.

A natural born leader, the primary school has accumulated many honors and recognitions under Mrs. Burney’s leadership. Midway Hills Primary is accredited with Quality from The Georgia Accrediting Commission, Inc; it is a PBIS Emerging School; it has been recognized for actively participating in Destination Imagination; and it has been recognized for actively participating and placing in the National SumDog Math Competition.

In describing her style of leadership, Mrs. Burney feels she demonstrates a combination of leadership techniques.

“My leadership style is composed of a variety of approaches. I am a transformational leader because I empower teacher leaders using a collaborative approach in decision making processes that impact our school. I am a servant leader because I always consider the needs of others by being consciously aware, being empathic all while maintaining high expectations for all. I am an instructional leader because I am constantly leading my team in learning and staying abreast of the latest research that will best improve student achievement.”

Overall, Mrs. Burney loves being a part of the Baldwin County School District and wouldn't have it any other way.

“The Baldwin County School District is a great place to work. We care for our students and do whatever it takes to remove barriers to ensure success for all. I would not want to be anywhere else but here!”

Thank you Mrs. Burney for bringing your genuine enthusiasm for education to your role as a principal in our school district.

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