Purnell School Announces Appointment of Tracy Haswell as Dean of Academics
Purnell School in Pottersville, N.J., the only college and preparatory boarding and day school for girls in grades 9-12 who learn differently, announced the appointment of Tracy Haswell as dean of academics, a position that serves on the school’s executive leadership team.
In this role, Haswell will collaborate with Dr. Martha Torres, director of Learning and Wellness, and the education task force to construct meaningful and engaging learning opportunities for all Purnell students. She is also a member of Purnell’s fall reopening task force.
Haswell is an innovative educator with over 20 years of experience as an academic dean, STEM leader, and social justice advocate at boarding and single-sex independent schools across the country. Haswell’s educational philosophy is grounded in the importance of empowering young women to find their individual voice and unique ways of expressing themselves.
“I am thrilled to welcome Tracy to our lead academic team,” said Anne M. Glass, head of school, Purnell School. “She brings a deep and wide breadth of knowledge, teaching, administrative, and research experience. Her passion for inquiry-based, interdisciplinary, project-based learning will certainly enrich not only opportunities for our students in STEM and STEAM, but across all departments.”
Haswell is creating an elective course this year, the first of its kind at the school that covers the neuroscience of learning differences. Understanding the role brain function plays in one’s learning style is critical to Purnell students’ self-knowledge and self-advocacy. A proponent of design thinking, she also has the backing of Purnell to establish an Innovation Maker Lab. This is made possible by a current capital campaign to support girls’ leadership.
“I’m joining Purnell during a time of accelerated innovation and growth, particularly as we finalize our plans to safely reopen our campus for students,” said Haswell. “I am deeply committed to building upon the supportive academic and socio-emotional environment that exists at Purnell and developing each student as an independent thinker and advocate for her own learning.”
Haswell earned her Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Rochester in 1984 and a Master of Science from Boston University in 1988, both in neuroscience.
For more information, visit www.purnell.org.