have known Dr. Barbara Derrick since 1992 when I first became a member of the Delta Kappa Gamma Society International, an organization for key women educators.

Through the years, Dr. Derrick has served in various chapter, area and state leadership positions in this organization. Dr. Derrick is revered and respected by thousands of teachers throughout the state of Texas who recognize her dedication to education, her commitment to excellence, her professionalism and her leadership qualities.

For 22 years, I have observed Dr. Derrick as she set and reached her personal and professional educational goals, from teacher to principal, from her superintendent’s certification to her doctoral degree in education. 

After being at other, larger, more successful school districts, Dr. Derrick came back to her hometown, her alma mater, to provide leadership and direction, dedicating her expertise and energy to the children of Hitchcock. 

For the past two years, Dr. Derrick has worked diligently in her position as superintendent of the Hitchcock Independent School District.

Dr. Derrick ensured that all school buildings were properly identified with new signage. 

She oversaw the sale of various school properties and helped to consolidate some departments in an effort to save money for the district. 

A new Teen Clinic is now housed on one wing of the Crosby Middle School. 

The original high school cafeteria is now the Bulldog Bistro, which will provide the necessary culinary training and experience for our students and others to be successfully employed in the restaurant business in Galveston’s tourist industry.

Dr. Derrick continually showed her appreciation for the teachers of HISD with her numerous emails and thank you notes.

She brought in excellent motivational speakers, including Coach David Vince, author of “When Life Throws you Curves, Keep Swinging,” and Dr. Gary Schumacher of UH-Clear Lake.

She was very visible on our campuses and made several presentations during our faculty meetings. Dr. Derrick even personally served lunch to all the teachers during Teacher Appreciation Week.

Dr. Derrick has recognized the achievements and successes of our students at districtwide pep rallies and board meetings. She also had campuses highlight special activities and accomplishments on our school district website on a regular basis.

Through a grant with College of the Mainland, she encouraged an increasing number of seniors to go to college. She wrote a grant that helped provide Christmas gifts to the families of 25 students at Stewart Elementary for the past two years.

She also led in the efforts to restore Big Red, our school’s mascot, as she tried to bring back the pride and traditions that once made Hitchcock ISD a strong, successful school district in Galveston County.

I want to thank Dr. Barbara Derrick for the significant difference she has made during her short tenure. 

I want to encourage her to continue to dream and to look forward to the next opportunity she is given to make a difference in the lives of the children in Galveston County. 

Denise Charlston is a teacher at Crosby Middle School in Hitchcock.

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(2) comments

PD Hyatt

I have heard nothing but good reports from various sources about her, which leaves me even more concerned about the why she is no longer employed at HISD. Add to that there is the large payout that was made to her with taxpayer money without any explanation as to why she was fired or quit.... I know with HR issues some things are supposed to be secret, but when you are spending that much money to get rid of your top employee something doesn't smell right to me.... Secrets in government should not be happening.... We have way to much of that at the Federal level and I would expect that not to happen at the local level....

Carlos Ponce

I concur with Denise's observations. Although I had retired from HISD before she became superintendent she sought my input on various projects and was grateful for my opinion and experience. I saw her often at football games, assemblies, pep rallies and band concerts and she always found time to converse. Teachers at HISD told me the academic atmosphere had improved when she was hired with a positive attitude towards all educators and students. To the students she was not just a picture in the yearbook or newspaper but a presence at school events. She was not a micro-manager but a fan of the students exhibiting Hitchcock Bulldog Pride when on campus. Good luck to Barbara Derrick and your family and may God Bless.

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