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Gainesville Middle interim principal predicts ‘easy’ transition

The newly named interim principal at Gainesville Middle School said this week that she would “absolutely” apply for the position when the job is posted.

Misty Freeman said she’s thrilled to have been appointed interim principal and hopes she’s “it” when the school’s government council makes a decision on who should head GMS.

“We’re a charter district and part of our charter guidelines in our school hiring is that the government council is involved in the hiring of the principal,” Freeman told The Times. “We want to respect the process that’s set forth by our charter district.”

On Tuesday Gainesville Schools Superintendent Jeremy Williams announced that Freeman would step into the interim position because current Principal Rose Prejean-Harris accepted an offer to work with Atlanta Public Schools. Prejean-Harris’ last day is Oct. 31.

“I’m stepping in as interim with the support of the superintendent,” Freeman said. “It was his recommendation and the school board’s, but like I said, we want to support the process.”

In the meantime, Freeman and Prejean-Harris said they’ve been working closely together for some time and are convinced that the transition transition in leadership will go smoothly. Freeman said she started the current school year filling in as assistant principal at Gainesville Middle.

“I’ve worked with Dr. Prejean-Harris the whole time she’s been here, so this is an easy transition,” Freeman said. “We work well together and we’ll continue to work well together. She’ll support from afar.”

Although the two and one-half years as principal at Gainesville Middle may appear brief, Prejean-Harris said it has felt like a lifetime.

“It feels like I belong here,” she said.

Williams said that bringing Freeman in as interim principal gives consistency to Gainesville Middle because she has already established relationships there.

“Promotion from within GMS would have created a domino effect in multiple positions,” Williams said. “Mrs. Freeman is excited about the role and will remain as the interim for the remainder of the school year. If selected as the principal when the search opens, the interim tag would be removed.”

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