My name is Jerome Gidrey Jr. and I am the principal of Southwest High School.
I was born in Corpus Christi, Texas, to Jerome Sr. & Doris Gidrey. I was an extremely small baby and had the normal complications of a baby born prematurely. Upon my father’s return from his second tour of duty in the Vietnam War, Jerome Sr., a U.S. Marine, was transferred to Camp Lejeune, North Carolina.
My four younger brothers and I spent most of our school years moving from North Carolina to South Carolina, then back to North Carolina, to upstate New York, and finally, I graduated from high school in Belle Chasse, Louisiana, the suburbs of New Orleans. I followed in my father’s footsteps and joined the Marines shortly after graduating from high school. I enjoyed my 13 years in the Marines and was honorably discharged after a serious knee injury.
A couple of years after my military service ended, I attended Coastal Carolina Community College for two years and then transferred to UNC-Wilmington, where I graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Middle Grades Education. I taught language arts and social studies at Jacksonville Commons Middle School for nine years and was named “Teacher of the Year” at Jacksonville Commons Middle in 2006-2007. During this time, I pursued my master’s degree in school administration through East Carolina University. In 2010, I was promoted to assistant principal and was transferred to Swansboro High School for four years and I also, briefly, held the AP role at Jacksonville High School until I was promoted to principal of Southwest Middle School in 2014. I was the principal of Summersill Elementary School from 2018-2022. I am proud to say that I have spent every bit of my career in education in the best county in the state: Onslow County Schools!
I am involved in local organizations which promote teaching and mentoring the youth of Onslow County. I, previously, served on the board of directors for Aspire, Reaching Beyond the Obvious, a program for 11-18 year old youth. I am also very involved in my church, Deliverance Evangelistic Temple, where I work with teenagers, am a member of the Men’s Choir, serve as an usher, and a Deacon for the church.
I am married to my childhood crush, Michele Bradley Gidrey, and together we have three daughters; Alexandrea, Britney, and Madisyn, a son-in-law, Marshall (married to Alex) and a grandson, Troy.
To email the principal click here: Jerome Gidrey