Hazen Assistant Principal Ed Crow receives state honor
December 4, 2013
By Christina Corrales-Toy
Hazen Assistant Principal Ed Crow comes from a family of educators.
His father was a teacher, and then a counselor, while his mother was always active in school PTAs, even serving as president.
Despite that, he never knew that education would ultimately be his field of choice — he started a brief broadcast journalism career before switching to the classroom.
“I did some volunteering in schools to see if that’s what I wanted to do,” he said. “Once I got back in the classroom and started helping kids do stuff, they kind of had me hooked at that point.”
Crow certainly found his calling, and if he needed any proof, it comes in the form of a state-shaped plaque bearing his name and the words Washington State Assistant Principal of the Year.
The Hazen administrator received the award this year from the Association of Washington School Principals, based on his strong educational leadership, commitment to the needs of his students and his skill in engaging the community in the learning process.
The honor wasn’t really about him, though, as much as it was about the Hazen school community, a humble Crow said.
“I think it meant a lot just because there are times when it doesn’t feel like Hazen always gets its due as what I think is really one of the top schools in the state,” he said.
Weeks later, Crow added another trophy to his shelf, earning the Seamount League’s Athletic Director of the Year award.
Assistant principals in the Renton School District must pull double duty, serving as athletic directors in addition to their academic responsibilities. Many school districts, including neighboring Issaquah, have full-time athletic directors.
“To be able to be recognized as somebody who is still able to pull his weight as an athletic director within the league, even though it’s not a full-time job, I think that’s something that I took a lot of pride in,” Crow said.
A typical day doesn’t exist for the Hazen assistant principal. His schedule changes weekly or daily, depending on the season.
Crow tries to visit classrooms as much as he can, when he’s not in meetings about instructional and professional development for teachers.
He’s responsible for the school’s safety plans, including lockdowns and fire drills. He also does teacher evaluations, along with the other administrators.
Crow doesn’t have to deal with discipline as much as he used to, with the addition of the school’s new dean of students. He’s a valuable sounding board for his fellow administrators, though, since he’s the only one that has been at Hazen for more than a year.
His favorite part of the job is working with teachers. One of the assistant principal’s responsibilities, he said, is to help good teachers do their jobs, and allow them do it without any distractions.
“I always talk about teaching as a growth industry,” he said. “We want to get better. We always want to look at any lesson, and ask what can we do to get better, and working with teachers is a big part of that.”
It’s Crow’s 10th year in the Renton School District, and fifth year at Hazen. It says a lot about the Highlander community, he said, that the school has several longtime staff members.
“This is one of those places that teachers come and then once they’re here, they kind of realize how good they have it,” he said.
That’s one of the reasons Crow feels at home at Hazen, but it also doesn’t hurt that it’s a short drive from his Newcastle home.
Crow has lived in his Olympus neighborhood for eight years. It’s where he and his wife Susan are raising three kids — Collin, 11, Travis, 8, and Ella, 5.
The Crow family enjoys sports, owning season tickets to University of Washington football and basketball games.
When Crow’s not at Hazen, he can likely be found taking his kids to sporting events or coaching his daughter Ella’s soccer team. But his mind is never far from Hazen, and the great work the staff is doing there.
“When I see lessons that are going really well and test scores that are going up, those types of things,” he said, “that’s what I enjoy doing the most.”