2019-2020 GCCISD News Events
REL Principal Named TASSP Region 4 Secondary Principal of the Year
Joe Farnsworth

Photo by Carrie Pryor-Newman


REL Principal Named TASSP Region 4 Secondary Principal of the Year


By: Susan Passmore


Dr. Joseph “Joe” Farnsworth, principal at Robert E. Lee High School, has been selected as the 2019-2020 Texas Association of Secondary School Principals (TASSP) Region 4 Secondary Principal of the Year.


Farnsworth began his role as principal at REL in February 2016 and was honored as Goose Creek CISD’s Secondary Principal of the Year in April 2018. During his tenure, the school’s STEM Academy was designated as a Texas Education Agency (TEA) T-STEM Model Academy and achieved National Model Status from the National Career Academy Coalition. REL also was selected as an Apple Distinguished School (2019-2022) for the third time. For 2019, REL earned a state distinction in science to add to the six distinctions received since 2017 and an overall rating of “B” from TEA, increasing from a “C” the previous year. The campus received Partner of the Year with ExxonMobil BTEC East in 2019 through the Baytown Chamber of Commerce Partner-in-Education program.


“It makes me proud to serve a school system alongside such a colleague who takes his leadership role seriously enough to intricately measure and convey to all stakeholders the academic progress, all while having fun and developing relationships with each and every faculty member,” said Dr. Randal O’Brien, Goose Creek CISD superintendent. “His vision is relayed through his focus on the teacher leaders and administration to instill upon all staff the value that they bring to enhancing the lives of our students.”


Farnsworth, who holds a bachelor’s degree from Arizona State University, a master’s degree from the University of Texas at Arlington and a doctorate from Arizona State University, began his 20-year career in education as a secondary biology teacher/soccer and volleyball coach in Fort Worth ISD, moving to the position of assistant principal in 2005. He served as principal of Pima Junior High and Pima High School in Arizona from 2005-2008, taking on the role of superintendent for Pima Unified School District #6 from 2008-2011. Farnsworth served as Human Resources Director for Queen Creek Unified School District #95, also in Arizona, from 2011-2012 and as principal of Queen Creek High School from 2012-2016.


“I am extremely honored to be recognized for the wonderful progress we have made at Robert E. Lee High School, the flagship school of Goose Creek CISD,” Farnsworth said. “I will be accepting this honor on behalf of the Gander Community, our parents, students, and most importantly, our amazing teachers! I hope I can represent GCCISD and Region 4 with the utmost professionalism and bring to light what an amazing school I have the pleasure to work in each day.”


Farnsworth and wife Jenae have made Baytown their home. Three of their five children attend Goose Creek CISD schools, and the two oldest graduated from REL.