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Monday, August 29, 2022

HBCU Grad Makes History as the Youngest Principal in Atlanta Public School District

Dominique Merriweather

Nationwide — Dr. Dominique Merriweather, a 30-year-old educator who is a Morehouse College graduate, has become the first Black person to be appointed to lead Sutton Middle School in Atlanta, Georgia. He is also now the youngest principal in the entire Atlanta Public School district.

Dr. Merriweather graduated from Westlake High School in 2010 and Morehouse College, an HBCU, in 2014. Back then, he had set his goal to become a corporate attorney and not an educator. But after spending time mentoring and reading to inner city students, he decided to change his path.

“One day, I went to go read to elementary school kids in the Atlanta University Center area and I fell in love with the students,” Merriweather told Fox 5 Atlanta.

In 2013, he started to pursue a career at teaching as a special education teacher for kids. Within just 9 years, he has since climbed through the ranks to become the district’s youngest principal ever.

“When you put your head in it, and never stop learning, and always are open to feedback and being better, the opportunities are there,” he said.

He has been appointed as principal at Sutton Middle School, where there are currently over 1,500 students. With the large population, he said listening to people and valuing and respecting their input are some of the most important things to do. Indeed, he already received positive feedback from the students.

“He’s really nice and fair and if we have a problem, he helps us to improve that,” eighth-grader Avery Wicker commented.

“He is a really nice guy, always there for you,” eighth-grader RJ Scott said.

Moreover, Merriweather has yet to think about his next career step. He said he wants to focus more on his present role and prove that he would succeed despite his relatively young age.

“Age does not equate to ability or capacity. If you are driven and open to learning and if you truly want to be the best at what you are doing, it can happen,” he said.