McMillan wins South Carolina Principal of the Year


Spartanburg School District One

Chapman Principal Andrew McMillan was recently named the South Carolina Secondary Principal of the Year.

Every year, the South Carolina Association of School Administrators selects one elementary school principal, one middle school principal, and one secondary or high school principal as the state Principals of the Year.
This year, the South Carolina Secondary School Principal of the Year was awarded to none other than Chapman principal Andrew McMillan.
“I was very much surprised. So surprised that I was in shock,” McMillan said. “I am honored and humbled to represent Chapman and South Carolina.”
According to Assistant Principal Amy Driggers, McMillan had been nominated by both faculty members at Chapman and employees at the district office. He then had to go through an extensive application process and multiple interviews before he was named a finalist.
In order to win Principal of the Year, applicants must have served as the principal of the same school for three years. This year was McMillan’s fourth year as principal of Chapman, which means that in his first year of eligibility, he won.
“This is the first time he’s ever had an opportunity to win,” Driggers said. “I don’t know if everybody knows that or not, so that’s really exciting.”
Members of the district office surprised McMillan with the news that he had won by bringing in members of his family and letting his young son make the announcement.
“I had no idea that my entire family was there until I saw my son walking out of the back of the media center holding balloons,” McMillan said. “It was and is certainly a moment I will never forget.”
Student body president and senior Sara Bryant wrote a student recommendation letter for McMillan and was excited to see him win.
According to Bryant, McMillan deserved to win the award because of the enormous time he gives to each individual at Chapman High School.
“Dr. Mac deserved to win the award because of the time he puts into each and every person that attends, works at, and contributes to Chapman in order to better the school’s environment,” Bryant said.
Driggers echoed similar sentiments. In her opinion, McMillan’s pride in this school and his dedication to the students in it are unmatched.
“He is absolutely 100% dedicated to this place, and it’s not just a job for him,” Driggers said. “The pride that he feels being a part of this, both from his upbringing being a part of Chapman High School and now being here in this role is all he’s ever wanted, and so that pride that he feels in giving that time and the responsibility he feels toward every student in this building is enormous, and he thinks about it every single minute of the day.”
McMillan, however, was quick to give credit to the rest of Chapman for his success. Winning such an award wouldn’t have been possible, he says, without the support he’s received from other leaders in his life, and now he gets the chance to showcase our school to the rest of the country.
“I am fortunate enough to have been around great leaders, whether it be family members, coaches, teachers, or other administrators I have worked alongside,” McMillan said. “This award gives me another platform to showcase the incredible talents of our students and more opportunities to discuss with those at the state and national level the great things that our school and district do daily.”
Some leaders may say that what they do is for others, when their actions are really for themselves. Driggers says that’s not the case for McMillan, however.
“It’s not a self-aggrandizement, or another bullet point on a resume,” Driggers said. “There’s something he’s thinking about how to improve the opportunities and experiences of the students in this building, and it’s not for any selfish purposes. Everything he does is for y’all, and that to me is the epitome of what a leader of a school must be.”