Wargo Announces Vision for Her Second Year in Office

Chit-Chat Headmistress Kim Wargo connects with a Middle School student during a lunchtime recess. Photo provided by Charlotte Hoskins

Eugene McDermott Headmistress Kim Wargo plans on having a great year, and with her goals layed out, she’s ready for anything

Armed with a candy bowl replenished with various treats, Eugene McDermott Headmistress Kim Wargo is prepared to take on her second year at Hockaday. Last year, she focused on learning names of Hockaday students, traditions and the Hockaday culture. This year she faces a greater challenge. 

 “I need to think about the vision of the school,” Wargo said. She’s started off by outlining a set of four goals to accomplish this school year.

1. Make the boarding department more seamless. This year Hockaday changed the title of House Directors to “Dorm Moms,” and “[we] have worked with House Council to develop some new policies that support students,” as well as they added new apartments to have “faculty-in-residence.” This year those faculty members are Vicki Palmer and College Counseling Associate Courtney Skerritt. In accordance with this goal, apartments have been added to the boarding houses, and Hockaday is now working on having all boarding and non-boarding students feel more connected. Wargo has added evening hours in the library in hope encourage more open study sessions for all students.

2. Improve communication between the school and parents. “This year we are really trying to focus on a positive proactive communication,” between the school, facility, students and parents, Wargo said. Hockaday would like to strengthen the communication especially when sending in forms for the beginning of the year. Over two years ago Hockaday transitioned into paperless and “it worked for a lot of folks and it didn’t work well for some,” Upper School head John Ashton said, “we need to make it more clear on our end.” To work on this communication Hockaday plans on sending a confirmation email that will go back to the parent once they send in their forms. Hockaday is also adding “Daisy Mail,” which is “a weekly newsletter that goes to all parents,” said Wargo. The letter will include calendar information including arts and athletics and a monthly column from the Head.

3. Kicking off Hockaday’s Centennial Celebration, which will be in full swing by next fall. Right now, Wargo is working on ideas some of these ideas are: “There will also be a big “Party of the Century” to close out the Centennial Year. We have a faculty committee working on ways to promote student involvement, and several students serving on the Centennial Committee.” “I am looking forward to the start of the celebrations of the centennial,” she said, “we will be working on it all year and next year.”

4. Focus on the “whole girl.” She continues to ask herself “are we supporting the girls the way we should be?” “We know that our girls get a very rich academic experience here,” she said, “but at the same time we need to live a balanced and healthy life, which can be done by giving time to play and exercise.” Wargo believes that students who live a balanced life are better equipped to solve challenges. And they know how to make work fun and productive. With this idea of the ‘whole girl’ Junior class President, Meredith, hopes Hockaday will add the aspect of Play into the curriculum, “I wish they would emphasize more on the Play idea I really like it but I have not seen much of it yet this year.” Meredith, although hoping that one of Wargo’s goals will also include less work, thought that Wargo did a great job acclimating into the Hockaday community, “she displayed very good leadership and was also very supportive…and I can’t wait to see what she does this year.”

-Gretchen