Thornton assumes role of CMSW principal, energizes Wranglers


Charlotte Vanyo

New Coppell Middle School West Principal Sarah Thornton is congratulated for her new position by 7th grade science teacher Elsa Butler and 6th grade science teacher Gena Erdman. Thornton was officially approved by the CISD Board of Trustees on Monday.

Nishant Medicharla, Business Manager

On Monday, assistant principal Sarah Thornton was named Coppell Middle School West principal at the Coppell ISD Board of Trustees meeting in the Vonita White Administration Building. Thornton replaces Dr. Emily Froese, who left public education to work as an educational consultant with the DLR group. 

Thornton’s family and CMSW colleagues cheered her on as her new role was announced. Afterward, there was a small reception to commemorate Thornton. 

“[I was] excited and surprised and honored and just really grateful to continue to lead this staff and these students and their families,” Thornton said. “I love West, and I am just really happy to continue to be here.” 

However, getting this position was no surprise to many of her friends and family. 

“We pretty much knew it was coming from the time she was a toddler,” Jeffrey Thornton, Sarah’s father, said. “She’s been focused on education since she was a little kid. She never really varied from that. We knew it was just a matter of time.”

While Thornton has assumed a new role which comes with greater responsibilities, she is no stranger to the CMSW campus and culture. Thornton worked at CMSW for the past five years as an assistant principal, allowing her to get to know the dynamics of the school, including its students and faculty members. 

“This is the best possible outcome,” CMSW dyslexia therapist Pam Yazbeck said. “It is really an answer to a prayer and a dream come true.” 

Before coming to Coppell, Thornton received a Bachelor’s in Education from Texas State University and taught English and social studies for six years in her hometown of Seguin, Texas. After coming to the DFW area, she taught in Irving ISD, then came to Coppell. Thornton earned a Master’s in Education from the University of Texas at Arlington and is currently pursuing a Doctorate in Education from Dallas Baptist University. 

On top of Thornton’s experience with the Coppell community, her work ethic was also another essential reason in giving her this role. 

“She is very approachable, knowledgeable, she clearly loves kids, she is very organized, she is a strategic thinker, she’s got a great vision,” CISD Superintendent Brad Hunt said. “I have seen her not only as a co-worker, but also as a parent.”

Many teachers at CMSW also have a pleasant time while working with her. 

“She is very cordial to everyone, but also very professional and business like,” Yazbeck said. “When she conducts meetings, the meetings just flow very smoothly; [there is] not a lot of small talk yet it is friendly.” 

With Thornton having an even greater responsibility over the school, she is even more excited to lead CMSW into the future. 

“I am most excited just to get to take care of and continue to serve the kids and their families who attend West and to continue with this staff,” Thornton said. “They are amazing, [and] they are doing great things.” 

Thornton does plan on adjusting things to the students’ and teachers’ needs. 

“We are going to celebrate the things people have been doing really well, and then we are going to get in and have a chance to talk to our students and our staff about where they see our campus going, and then make those adjustments,” Thornton said.

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