Deborah Phelps Recommended for Education Foundation

The mother of Olympian Michael Phelps previously served as the principal of Windsor Mill Middle School.

Deborah Phelps, mother of Olympian Michael Phelps, has been recommended for transfer as a director for the Baltimore County Public Schools Education Foundation.

Phelps had been principal of the struggling Windsor Mill Middle School since its opening in 2006. School system spokesman Charles Herndon couldn't immediately confirm if the school's failing standards had anything to do with the reassignment.

Phelps' departure from the school was first reported by The Baltimore Sun.

Herndon said Superintendent S. Dallas Dance made the recommendation to move Phelps but the Board of Education would still need to approve the appointment.

"The superintendent has made reaching the business community a priority," Herndon said. "Anyone that knows [Phelps] knows that she is very high-energy."

If approved by the board, Phelps' responsibilities for the Education Foundation, which fundraises for the school system, would include promoting fundraising initiatives. Although, the full job description has yet to be determined.

"It's a position that's still somewhat evolving," Herndon said.

Phelps shared the news of the reassignment in a letter posted on the school's website.

"Remembering the day that I was appointed to serve as the principal of Windsor Mill Middle School will always be one of the most exhilarating moments of my life," Phelps wrote in the letter. "As the newest middle school to open its doors in Baltimore County Public Schools in more than two decades, it was an honor and a privilege to open my arms and heart to each and every one of you."

Assistant principal JoAnn Rich will serve as interim principal at Windsor Mill.

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Evets July 24, 2012 at 11:41 PM
I agree, and perhaps that should have been stated before the information about being Mr. Phelps' mother.
Flower Power July 25, 2012 at 01:59 AM
I think that Dr. Dance is on to something in recommending Ms. Phelps to this position. Let's hope the board approves it.
JD1 July 25, 2012 at 02:41 AM
Unfortunately she was a horrible principle. The school has never performed. If it wasn't for her fame she would have been out of that school three years ago. This was an easy out for BCPS - there is no other principle standing in the system that has had a failing school for so long. Talk to anyone on staff - she was no leader. It's shameful that the system allows these folks to collect big paychecks and not perform. She made 3x what the teachers make who we're working their butts off while shenwas busy doing commercials and signing book deals. Four years ago she spent the entire summer away while her staff tried to put together a functional plan for improvement. Sad!
Flower Power July 25, 2012 at 04:16 AM
If what you say is true, school officials share part of the blame for allowing the school to be without an acting principal during her absence. It is my understanding that her leave had to approved by the area superintendent & superintedent. Your point is well talked in regards to the 6 year span of little to no improvement. To that I say poor kids! Shame on everyone with a child in that school for not demanding more. You know this wouldn't have happened in the Central area. The parents would have taken it to board until she was replaced. I think she should have taken an extended leave of absence so another adm could have been placed there to provide more support and leadership. With said, I still support Dr. Dances' recommendation. She's become an iconic figure, like it or not, corporations will love donating large amounts of cash to a school system whose the uncle of an Olympic gold medalist. Just imagine, she will probably get an expense account so she can wine and dine prospective donors. She'll be awesome! Who else could bring in the much needed big bucks. Ms. Phelps has a huge personality and much to tell. I think it's a clever way for her to give back to a school system that has given so much to her.
M. Sullivan July 25, 2012 at 01:09 PM
Doesn't sound like she was much of a principal.


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