Founding Principal, (retired)
Michael Wilson was with the Birmingham City Schools from 1992 until his retirement in November of 2019. He earned his bachelor’s degree from Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas. Dr. Wilson completed his Masters and Ed.S. in special education from The University of Alabama, Birmingham, as well as an Ed.S. in Educational Administration from the University of Montevallo. In 2003 he was awarded a Ph.D. in Instructional Leadership from the University of Alabama.
Dr Wilson has served as a special education teacher, assistant principal and has had the opportunity to lead two elementary schools within the Birmingham City School System. First as principal at Whatley Elementary and now principal at Glen Iris Elementary which has been under his leadership for 14 years. During his first year as principal at Whatley Elementary, his school was one of 6 schools across the state to move from Alert III status to Academic Clear. Whatley was converted successfully from a K-5 to a K-8 school in 2003. He also oversaw the first Kaboom playground construction in the district at Whatley Elementary and the last at Glen Iris.
Patton Furman received her Master’s degree in French Education from the University of Alabama at Birmingham in 2000. Shortly after graduation, she traveled to Niort, France, to teach English. She lived and traveled in France for a year, teaching in several elementary and middle schools. Once back in the States, she completed her EdS degree in Educational Leadership from UAB. She received her doctorate in Educational Leadership from the University of Alabama in April, 2020.
Dr. Furman has had the privilege of serving students for the past 22 years. She taught French classes at Oak Mountain High School for 12 years. She taught all levels of French, and installed an Advanced Placement course in French at the school. She became Assistant Principal at Oak Mountain High in 2013. In this position, she worked closely with teachers and staff to create a positive learning environment. In 2018, Dr. Furman became the principal of the Shelby County Schools Alternative Programs, including
Direction and the Success Program. Here, she worked to create an atmosphere of self-awareness and mindfulness to help students learn to succeed. Dr. Furman moved to a district position in 2019. As Student Services Supervisor she worked with administrators and parents to support the district’s 22,000 students.
Dr. Furman is thrilled to join a talented team of educators at MCAA. She began her role at MCAA in August of 2022.
Dr. Wilson worked tirelessly to ensure that the curriculum implemented is one that is rigorous and relevant in order to meet the diverse needs of the over 700 students at Glen Iris. He empowered teachers to utilize an integrated approach to learning thereby improving the achievement of all students. This is accomplished by having the literacy standards as the driving force across all curriculum areas. Another avenue he has instituted in order to ensure continuous learning for teachers and students is a partnership with the UAB Curriculum and Instruction Department. This partnership provides strategic professional development for teachers during and after school. Under his supervision Glen Iris was awarded two prestigious academic achievement awards: Bronze winner of National Center for Urban Transformation and CLAS Banner School.
As principal of Glen Iris Elementary school Dr. Wilson has experienced many accomplishments. He partnered with B.R.E.A.D (Birmingham Regional Empowerment and Development Center) and was awarded a 21st Century grant. Dr. Wilson also served as Alabama’s Ambassador for the After-school Alliance whose mission is to ensure that all children have access to affordable, quality after-school programs.
Dr. Wilson’s dream of an outdoor classroom came into fruition, which includes several plant habitats, vegetable washing station, pond with a variety of living creatures, and a season farmer’s market which supports our local community. The outdoor classroom was created through a partnership with Jones Valley Teaching Farm through which the Good School Food Program was created. This partnership has since been replicated at 6 schools within our district.
Dr. Wilson has served on several advisory committees such as Partners in Education, Family Involvement, Hands on Birmingham, and Community Education South.