Veteran mathematics instructor, Melynda Wright, has been named the first-ever HP 100 Centennial Celebrations Chair at Highland Park High School.
Wright is currently leading a team of 22 teachers as the HPHS Mathematics Department Chair, a position held since early 2009. Prior to her experience as a mathematics instructor with Highland Park ISD, Dr. Wright served as the Assistant Principal of Rockwall High School from 2002-2006, and a mathematics instructor at the Smithville and Wyle School Districts. She is a graduate of St. Edward's University with a degree in mathematics and a minor in political science. She has her M.Ed. from Texas State University and her Ed.D. in Education Administration from Texas A&M Commerce.
"I have been at HPHS for 12 years, and I have taught at several other school districts, but HP is uniquely excellent," Wright said. "I believe the thing that sets HP apart are the students. We have the best of the best and I look forward to contributing to that excellence in the role of the HP 100 Centennial Celebrations Chair."
Today, Wright is one of 900 mathematicians from around the world selected by College Board to score student AP Calculus exams. She has also developed and launched a YouTube channel in 2014 for her students called Dr. Wright's Math that enables her AP Calculus students to review lessons taught in the classroom. To date, instructional videos on the channel have been viewed more than 8,300 times.
She is one of 15 teachers selected to participate on the Moody Innovation Institute Design Team, implementing STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Mathematics) based learning in classrooms throughout HPISD.
Two endowed chairs are already established through the Highland Park ISD Education Foundation for both the English and Science departments at HPHS. English teacher, Becky Adams, is in her second year as the John Connolly Distinguished Chair in the Humanities, and science teacher Wenzen Chuang was named in early 2017 as the La Fiesta de las Seis Banderas Distinguished Chair in Science.
"Each one of these honorees has been selected through vigorous review of their educational practice and have committed to finding ways to impact instruction throughout our school," HPHS Principal Walter Kelly said. "With the large and outstanding faculty at HPHS and considering the amazing support of the Park Cities community, we have been able to award three distinguished chairs in order to recruit and retain the best teachers around."
With funding from the John Connolly Fund, La Fiesta de la Seis Banderas and the HP 100 Centennial Celebrations, HPHS has been able to award a $10,000 annual endowed stipend to three leaders in the classroom and in the world of education.
Funding for this chair was made possible by the combined efforts of HPHS students, who have been raising money each year since 2013 with the annual Centennial Dance.