Head of School
Byron M. Lawson Jr. began his tenure as the fifth head of Trinity Preparatory School on July 1, 2016. Byron shares his excitement about becoming part of the Trinity family in his letter below. The board's announcement of Byron's hire is included as well.
I believe we all would agree that summer was too short, but I hope all of you had to time to rest, relax, and recuperate with family and friends.
The early part of this school year is big for us as we celebrate the 50th anniversary of the opening of Trinity Prep's doors on September 9, 1968. We will have a special chapel service with Bishop William Brewer on September 13 and a campus-wide recognition, complete with t-shirts, themed lunch, and pep rally on September 14. On September 15, from 7 to 10 p.m. at Full Sail Live, the Golden Jubilee gathering will be the capstone of the week's events. We look forward to seeing you there.
We’ve recognized this senior class with our traditional ceremony, Senior Investiture, which is our opportunity to give a blessing to the senior class, and their opportunity to proclaim their goals and values to the school. The class of 2019 stated in the Senior Class Pledge:
We the class of 2019, pledge to create a passionate, energetic, dedicated community which embodies the spirit of giving. We strive to inspire one another as well as others through our devotion to our endeavors. We wholeheartedly pledge to dedicate ourselves to these pursuits.
I have every confidence that our seniors will demonstrate and hold fast to this pledge, and that they will carry it beyond 5700 Trinity Prep Lane.
We’ve turned a corner here at Trinity Prep, and there have been a few changes. After a year of discussion, our Student Council will lead the entire student body in a values-based exploration of “What it means to be a Saint.” As always, Trinity students and faculty hope that everyday behavioral norms uphold community values of Growth, Inspiration, Respect, Integrity, Cooperation, and Generosity. We’ve expanded the curriculum to include more non-honors and more non-AP courses that meet graduation requirements. We’ve established global partnerships with schools in Israel, China, and South Africa. Our athletic teams and their individual players continue to thrive to the point that 20 students from 122 members of the class of 2018 committed to playing NCAA sports. We’ve spent over $700,000 on our athletic and wellness programs in the last two years. And we have happily introduced a transportation program that links us to Lake Mary, Lake Nona, and Windermere.
Some things remain the same.We continue to develop our advisory program to make sure that the parent-student-school partnership, the cornerstone of all of our efforts, is working at its very best. A student’s painting is on display in the U.S. Capitol, each of our student publications won awards last year, and English instructor Susan Lilley is Orlando’s Poet Laureate. Fine arts instructors Irina Ashcraft and Janine Papin won state and national awards for excellence in their fields, and our endowed teaching chairs are studying best practices in every discipline as I write. One out of every five members of the class of 2018 was recognized by the National Merit Scholarship program. Our students will break ground this fall on Trinity Prep's 20th Habitat House, and our chaplain continues to offer blessings to every member of the Trinity family and the Central Florida community.
From where I sit, although I am completely biased, I can’t imagine a child having a better educational experience. Our students thrive in every identifiable way, and we are laser-focused on wellness, caring for each other, and celebrating effort and achievement.
I know we all will have a great year, and I wish you Godspeed.
Byron M. Lawson Jr.
September 21, 2015
Dear Members of the Trinity Family,
I am excited to report that the Search Committee has completed its work and that the Board of Trustees has hired Trinity Prep’s fifth head of school. You will recall that we conducted a national search for our next head of school. That search led us to Byron Lawson, Jr. Byron has accepted the Board’s offer to succeed Craig Maughan beginning July 1, 2016.
Armed with a degree in history from University of Chicago and later a master's degree in history from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Byron’s 21 years of experience in independent schools has taken him from The Kinkaid School to St. Mark’s School of Texas and now to us. Along the way, Byron has taught history, served as assistant dean of students for pre-kindergarten through 12th grades, director of financial aid and assistant director of admissions, history department chair, and assistant to the headmaster. As the assistant to the headmaster at St. Mark’s, Byron is involved with fundraising, works closely with the parent association, chairs or participates on all school leadership committees, administers the faculty recruitment/hiring budget, directs the Fellows Program, sets the curriculum and oversees the needs of the History Department, and is responsible for all faculty recruitment, hiring, evaluation, and retention.
Byron’s multiple references are outstanding. One of his references stated, “No one cares more about kids and works harder for an institution than Byron. Byron does everything well and right.” That statement precisely captures the preparation, enthusiasm, and vision Byron displayed during his interviews with the members of our school community. Consistent adjectives that emerged from those who interviewed Byron while he was on campus last week are “passionate,” “engaging,” “approachable,” and “genuine.” One person simply wrote “Wow!” The search committee is confident that Byron Lawson is the right fit for Trinity Prep at this time in its history.
Byron’s wife, Courtney, is accomplished in her own right. She is also a graduate of University of Chicago, was a collegiate volleyball and softball player, and is currently a family medicine physician. Byron and Courtney have two children, boys aged 17 and three. Over the coming months, we will be planning opportunities for Byron and Courtney to be in Winter Park to start becoming a part of our family, and we will let you know those plans as they crystallize.
I cannot conclude without letting you know how supportive Craig Maughan has been of the Search Committee’s work. He has provided valuable insight and wisdom for which I am extremely grateful, and welcomed each candidate warmly to our campus.
With the search concluded, we will turn our attention to transition and look forward to the continued growth and excellence of our school. As we do, the entire Search Committee thanks you for the interest and support you have provided over the past several months. We know you will show that same support to the Lawsons.
With best regards,
D. Paul Dietrich II, ’83, P’15, P’18, P’19, P’20
Chair, Search Committee
Vice-Chair, Board of Trustees
Paul C. Perkins, Jr. ’84, P’14, P’18
Chairman of the Trinity Preparatory School Board of Trustees