Hardwicke finds her calling at Handley


One of the hardest decisions for teachers to make is whether to stay in the classroom or to make the move into administration.

For one motivated and talented educator in the La Porte Community School Corporation, it was time to make her way up the ladder in the school system. Mrs. Kelly Hardwicke has recently been named the assistant principal at Handley Elementary School, leaving behind her 10 year teaching career at Riley Elementary. 

“I started to get the itch to go back to college and pursue my Master’s degree from Purdue University,” Hardwicke said. “I just felt that school administration was a route that I would be able to excel in.” 

When the position first opened up over the summer, she felt like it was calling her name. 

She knew she had big shoes to fill, but she is thankful for all of the phenomenal principals she has previously worked with at Riley.

“I have worked for three dedicated building principals as a teacher–Mr. Manering, Mrs. Wiltfong, and Mr. Alber–that I looked up to and highly respect,” Hardwicke said. “It is my goal to strive to make as much of an impact on others as they have on me.”

It is safe to say that Hardwicke is already making an impact at the new school, and the year has just begun.

“Her great work ethic and positive attitude make her a great fit,” Pam Upp, Handley Elementary principal, said. “Our theme is “Piecing together a great year,” and Mrs. Hardwicke is definitely a valuable piece to our school.”

The transition from classroom to office has been an adjustment for Hardwicke, but it has been one well worth making. 

“In a classroom, your main focus is on your one group of students and their needs. It is slightly overwhelming at first to move to a new school where you do not know many names or faces,” Hardwicke said. “However, everyone is very friendly and wants to come up and say hello. Just as I did when I was a teacher, I am building relationships already with our students, their families, and finding ways to support their needs.” 

Hardwicke is excited for all of the incredible bonds with students, families, and other staff members that she is going to make. She has already been visiting classrooms, taking a seat, and watching what the many students are capable of achieving. 

“Each day I wake up excited to come to school,” Hardwicke adds. “Handley is a wonderful school to be a part of, and the energy that you feel when you walk through the doors is full of passion and excitement.”

The La Porte Community School Corporation couldn’t be more excited to watch Hardwicke excel as an administrator just as she did as a teacher.

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