Sandra Betters began her tenure as the 26th President of Nardin Academy on July 1, 2021. Betters comes to Nardin from Our Lady of Mercy Academy (OLMA), a private college preparatory school for young women located in Syosset, N.Y, where she served as Principal since 2018.
“Sandra Betters’ leadership style, personal values and professional background are an optimal match for Nardin Academy. Her experience and educational philosophy directly align with those of our school’s founders, the Daughters of the Heart of Mary, and Nardin’s mission and values to inspire hearts and minds to do amazing things for the world through faith, character, academic excellence and service,” said Tish Van Dyke ’82, Chair of the Nardin Academy Board of Trustees.
At OLMA, Betters led numerous initiatives, including a comprehensive student wellness program, Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) programming and a campus-wide technology upgrade. She also co-led the operations and strategic planning for the school’s 90-acre campus and was instrumental in the recent $8M capital campaign.
“As a mission-based leader, I look forward to the opportunity to work alongside other education professionals at Nardin Academy to provide every student with a holistic, student-centered experience, rooted in equity and transformative education. Ultimately, it is my aim for every student at Nardin to feel known and represented as an individual. I see the goal of education to empower students through voice and choice to enter the world ready to serve with their God-given gifts,” said Betters.
With more than two decades of experience in education, Betters has held both administrative and teaching roles at private and public schools in New York State, North Carolina and Virginia. Prior to her role of Principal of OLMA, she served as Academic Dean at Rockland Country Day School. She also spent nine years at the Albany Academies where she taught grades 5, 6, 11 and 12 and served as a grade level dean, professional learning community (PLC) leader, student advisor and honors project co-chair. Earlier in her career, Betters served as the gifted and talented department chair at A.H. Bangert School in New Bern, N.C, and taught grades 2, 3 and 5 and served as summer school lead supervisor in Fairfax County Public Schools in Fairfax, V.A.
“As a school leader, my areas of focus include academic readiness, emotional and social competency, and social justice. Building upon the years of excellence at Nardin Academy, I look forward to upholding the values of the Daughters of the Heart of Mary in a just, inclusive, and equitable manner,” said Betters.
Betters’ appointment as Nardin Academy President was approved by the unanimous vote of the Board of Trustees after an extensive search. This recruitment effort started in the fall of 2020 and was led by Korn Ferry, a global search firm, and Nardin’s Search Committee, made up of representatives from the Board of Trustees, Alumni and the Daughters of the Heart of Mary, the religious order who founded the school.
Betters earned a B.S. in Elementary Education from St. Bonaventure University and M.S.Ed in Education Leadership and Administration from the College of Saint Rose. She will complete her Ed.D. in Education Policy and Leadership with a core focus on systems thinking, personal leadership, social justice and anti-racism, and policy and research from American University in 2022.