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Dr. Gloria Woods-Weeks takes the helm at Riverside High School

Asia Cunningham

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Dr. Gloria Woods-Weeks, who has led the National Blue Ribbon Award-winning J.D. Clement Early College High School since 2012, has accepted DPS superintendent Dr. Pascal Mubenga’s appointment as the next principal of Riverside High School effective November 1.


“Riverside High School has been through a period of leadership transition, and it is time for stability,” said Dr. Mubenga. “Dr. Woods-Weeks meets all the criteria the Riverside school community developed last December in their leadership profile. She is an experienced principal who understands Durham, a strong community builder, and communicator, and is an advocate for equity. For eight consecutive years, 100 percent of her students at Early College have graduated on time. She has high expectations and a track record of mobilizing support for students, teachers, and staff.”

Under her leadership, Early College earned the U.S. Department of Education’s National Blue Ribbon Award in 2019, one of two DPS schools to claim the prestigious award since the city and county schools merged. Dr. Woods-Weeks began her DPS administrative career in 2009 as principal of Holton Career and Resource Center, coming to the district from Chapel Hill-Carrboro City Schools.  She earned her Doctor of Education degree from East Carolina University.

Taking the reins as interim principal at J.D. Clement Early College High School will be Dr. Lori Bruce, currently serving as an assistant principal at Sherwood Githens Middle School. Dr. Bruce earned her doctorate at UNC-Chapel Hill, where her dissertation, “Perceptions, Motivations, and Achievement of African-American Students Enrolled in a Middle College High School,” was only the second dissertation ever written about any Early or Middle College high school in North Carolina. Dr. Bruce has served as Chief Excellence Officer/Assistant Superintendent for Ithaca City Schools in New York and as a Federal Programs Regional Consultant to the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction, as well as an assistant principal at Githens and Lakeview School.