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Who WE Are – Betsy Fleetwood

Elizabeth “Betsy” Fleetwood calls herself a “Colonial lifer” having attended schools in Colonial as a child,  graduating from William Penn in 1992, and working in the district for 24 years.  Fleetwood began her career as a teacher but aspired early on to climb the ranks. She headed her department as a history teacher, was William Penn’s first female assistant Athletic Director, and became an Assistant Principal at William Penn in 2006.  After opening and serving as the first principal at McCullough Middle School, Fleetwood would go on to become the Director of Human Resources and now serves as the Assistant Superintendent.

“As a New Castle girl and William Penn grad, I’m proud of what I’ve been able to accomplish in Colonial!  I’m a leader by nature.  I’ve always liked the responsibility of being in charge of something, having a say in how things go,” said Fleetwood.

Fleetwood’s leadership abilities were put to the test starting in March when Delaware’s State of Emergency was declared due to the pandemic. “COVID-19 has certainly rocked our world… it came right as I started my new position.  I felt it was baptism by fire.  But when I think about how quickly the district responded, changed course, and made the best of a terrible situation, I am beyond proud!” Fleetwood said.

Fleetwood strongly believes in Colonial’s Power of WE mantra, saying it takes everyone in and outside of the classroom to support students.  She also appreciates fellow administrators and staff who’ve worked tirelessly through the pandemic saying, “I am very thankful for the team we have—all of them made it easier to do what needed to be done.”    

Along with helping the district navigate through the pandemic, Fleetwood is deeply committed to confronting systemic racism in our schools and is part of the force behind an intentional push to recruit more employees of color so Colonial’s culturally diverse population of students will see more teachers and staff who look like them saying,

“I feel now is the time for change.  We have to find new and better ways to support our students of color, our students with disabilities, our students with academic talent.  We have to make sure we are eliminating old ways that are harmful and call out ways that people never thought were harmful.  By doing these things, we as a District will prove to be a stronger district.”