When Solar Preparatory School for Girls at James B. Bonham opens its doors in August, Nancy Bernardino will be at the helm as principal. Bernardino and her team wrote a proposal for the all-girls STEAM school as part of the Public School Choice initiative in Dallas ISD.
Bernardino’s last position was as principal of John Quincy Adams Elementary, a Title I school in Southeast Dallas. She has served the families of Dallas ISD since 2005 in various capacities, including associate principal, academic coordinator, and teacher. In the fall of 2015, Bernardino was a finalist for Dallas ISD Elementary Principal of the Year. Additionally, in 2013 the Southeast Dallas Chamber of Commerce honored her as Principal of the Year.
Over the past three years, Adams has earned multiple distinctions from the Texas Education Agency in recognition of student achievement in math, reading, and science. Last year, Adams was one of 24 schools nationwide to be a recipient of the Excellence in Urban Education Award given by the National Center for Urban School Transformation.
Born in Mexico and raised in Dallas, Bernardino is the first in her family to earn a Bachelor’s Degree. She grew up in east Dallas and attended elementary and middle school in Dallas ISD. She graduated high school from The Hockaday School, a private all-girls school in Dallas.
Bernardino’s experience in a single-gender environment at The Hockaday School influenced her decision to start Solar Preparatory School for Girls. Bernardino wants public-school students in the Dallas area to have the same opportunity to gain confidence and leadership experience in an academically rigorous all-girls setting.
Bernardino earned a Master of Education from Texas A&M-Commerce, as well as the following degrees from Southern Methodist University: Master of Liberal Arts; Advanced Graduate Studies in Dispute Resolution; Bachelor of Arts in Spanish; and a Bachelor of Arts in Public Affairs and Corporate Communications.
She is currently working toward earning a Doctorate Degree in Education at SMU.