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Conversations with a Principal: Dr. Emily Fraser

Although Dr. Emily Fraser has just begun her time as McCoy Elementary Principal, her experience as a Georgetown ISD (GISD) educator expands far beyond this role. After spending her first year in education as a kindergarten teacher in Granger ISD, Fraser moved to GISD where she has served as an elementary school teacher, a resource and inclusion teacher, an ARD (Admission, Review and Dismissal) and ChildFind facilitator and a middle school vice principal. Fraser’s wide variety of educational experiences has made her one very unique and well-rounded elementary school principal. 

The Conversation

Can you talk a little bit about your own education and background? 

So, I actually grew up in Georgetown and graduated from Georgetown High School (GHS) in 2004. I am a firm believer in the education system here, so much so that both of my kids attend GISD schools. My son Jaxon is in second grade at Carver, and my son Johnny is in eighth grade at Wagner.

After high school, I attended Schreiner University where I received my Bachelors and my Masters of Education. I then received my Doctorate in Educational Leadership from the University of Mary Hardin Baylor. 

So, why work in education?

Growing up, school was always very important to me. No matter what was going on in my world, I knew that when I got to school every day, my teachers would be there to support me. I actually still talk to some of my teachers, and my sixth grade language arts teacher saw my dissertation before anyone else did. I remember telling her, “You are one of the reasons why I am able to do this,”.

My educators were always my constant, and I want to be that for students, staff, parents…everyone. 

What do you love most about working in GISD?

Well, going back to my second grader being at Carver… A lot of people say to me, “Now that you are a principal at McCoy, why is Jaxon at a different elementary campus?”. And it’s simple, really. I completely trust Carver and the staff there, and it speaks to the district as a whole. I believe that we have built a community where we rely on each other, and there is a lot of trust between campuses. It doesn’t matter which school my son is at because I know that he is being taken care of and his needs are being met in GISD.

I am a firm believer in Georgetown and the opportunities that live here. The district has set me up to grow in many ways. That's why my kids are here, and that’s why I want to work here. 

Do you feel that your different past roles have helped prepare you for your current one? 

Absolutely. Being able to go back and reflect on past experiences is huge. There is always a new point of view that I carry with me into the next year. 

Over time, I have learned that my main focus is always the needs of the student, and that’s what I think has really prepared me for this. When working with a young child, I tend to look at the situation with the perspective of a ChildFind and ARD facilitator because I worked with children aged 0-3 during that role.

My experiences as an administrator allow me to think about the needs of our teachers. What can I do to ensure that our teachers feel supported and valued? The most important thing I have learned over time is that everyone in the web of education has a vital role to play. 

What is something that makes you you?

Every day, I remember to laugh. And I always do my best to make others laugh. I believe that laughter is joy, and we all have to have joy. Truly, it is one of my purposes on this earth: to educate and to make people smile. If one can experience that joy and that happiness, that positive energy will go into your actions.