Dr. Merritt F. Waters is the Principal of Horace Mann Elementary School in Lakewood City Schools. She has also served as a leader at the district level in prior positions as Director of Student Services in Olmsted Falls City Schools and Coordinator of Psychological Services for Perkins Local Schools (Sandusky, Ohio).
Dr. Waters earned a Doctor of Philosophy degree in Educational Leadership from Kent State University in 2014. She also achieved a Master's degree in Educational/School Psychology from John Carroll University and a Bachelor of Arts in Business Administration/Psychology from Marietta College. Coursework at Ashland University provided the basis for her pupil services license, and she also holds Ohio Department of Education licensure for the areas of superintendent and school psychology.
Dr. Waters has taught courses in the principalship, communication and consultation, educational psychology and child development, both at Kent State and Ashland Universities. The article derived from her dissertation is published in The Journal of School Leadership, and she is a contributing author to the book (C. Hackney, Ed.), Leading From a Feminist Soul (Information Age, 2019).
As a constructivist leader, Dr. Waters prioritizes the growth of students and colleagues alike, both in her PK-12 and higher education roles. She believes that striving for personal balance is essential for lasting improvement. Thus, when adults and children bring their best selves to the field of learning, they are able to engage in a cycle of reflection and action that yields greater self-awareness, creativity and the ability to contribute to the benefit of the whole.
Ph.D. in Educational Leadership, Kent State University, Post-Master’s coursework in Pupil Services Administration, Ashland University, M.Ed. in Educational/School Psychology, John Carroll University, B.A. in Business Administration/Psychology, Marietta College
Mindfulness and other self-regulation tools for adults and children in schools, Continuous improvement for diverse adult learners, Practitioner research of all types (as it encourages deeper engagement in the work), Feminist leadership
Waters, M. F. (2019). Waking up: Reflections of an early career principal. In C. Hackney (Ed.), Leading from a feminist soul (pp. 25 - 48). Charlotte, NC: Information Age.
Waters, M. F., & Hackney, C. E. (2019). The manifestation of spirituality in special education leaders. Journal of School Leadership (in press) https://doi.org/10.1177/1052684619848096.
Waters, M. F., & Rini, C. (2017). Horace Mann students get STEAMed with new toys. OAESA Principal Navigator (13, 1), 36-37.
Lakewood Council of PTAs Outstanding Elementary Educator Award 2015