If You See Something, Say Something
Summers photo 001Mrs. Kim Summers, ext. 38103, (Email)

Mrs. Summers began her career with St. Mary’s County Public Schools in 1988 as a Kindergarten teacher at both Lettie Dent and Mechanicsville Elementary Schools.  She also taught grades, 3, 4, 5 and served as an IRT before becoming an Assistant Principal at Oakville Elementary in 1997.  In 2000, Mrs. Summers was appointed as the principal of Dynard Elementary School.  Under her leadership, Dynard was named the Maryland Character Education School of the Year. 

In 2007, Mrs. Summers was named the Washington Post Distinguished Educational Leader and the St. Mary’s County Public Schools Principal of the Year.   In 2009, Mrs. Summers was selected to open Evergreen Elementary School, which was the first new school in St. Mary’s County in almost 30 years. 

Mrs. Summers was appointed principal of Chopticon High School in 2016.  Since then, she has continued her mission to ensure that all students are provided an exceptional learning environment with every opportunity to succeed both in and out of the classroom.  She has a passion for education and an unwavering commitment to making a difference in the lives of children.  #ChooseKind


McDanielMs. Shelly McDaniel, ext 38115, (E-mail)

12th Grade, AVPA and AOF

Mrs. Shelly McDaniel began her career in education eighteen years ago as a social studies teacher at Chopticon High School.  She taught for five years and then served as an administrator for eleven years in the Charles County Public School System.    Mrs. McDaniel received her BA from the University of Maryland in History/Social Studies and her Master’s Degree in Secondary Education from Towson University.  She received the Charles County Exemplary Employee Award, was inducted into Who’s Who Among American Teachers and was twice nominated by her co-workers for Charles County Vice Principal of the year.  Mrs. McDaniel has also worked for the Maryland State Department of Education contributing to the High School Assessments formation by serving as an Item Writer, on the Item Review Committee, the Stimulus and Passage Review Committee and the Rangefinder Projects.  She is also trained in the internationally recognized programs AVID (Advancement via Individual Determination) and Capturing Kids Hearts.  Mrs. McDaniel is very excited to be back at Chopticon High School and looks forward to serving the Chopticon community for many years to come. 


Norton Kathy Ms. Kathy Norton, ext 38117, (E-Mail)

9th Grade, Pride Time, Substitutes

Mrs. Norton graduated with a BS in Math from Pfeiffer University and earned her masters in Educational Leadership/Instructional from the University of North Florida.  She taught 2 years in Prince George County HS, VA before entering the U.S. Navy.  Mrs. Norton served 6 years in the Navy as an Aircraft Commander.  As a military dependent family, she taught at Orange Park High School in Florida before moving to Maryland.  Mrs. Norton taught at Leonardton High School for 2 years before being promoted to Assistant Principal at Margaret Brent Middle School.  After 2 years at MBMS, she relocated to Spring Ridge Middle School before accepting the position of Principal at Park Hall Elementary School.  She served as principal for 7 years before returning to high school roots at Chopticon.  Currently serving as 12 month Assistant Principal.


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Mr. Marc Pirner, ext 38115, (E-Mail)

11th Grade, Safety & Security, Building Maintenance, Food Services,  Athletics

While earning his Masters in Teaching at St. Mary’s College of Maryland, Mr. Pirner volunteered and student taught in several SMCPS buildings: including George Washington Carver, Spring Ridge, and Leonardtown High. He also spent 3 months teaching at a middle school in The Gambia, West Africa. Mr. Pirner graduated Cum Laude from SMCM, was named a St. Mary’s Scholar, and was awarded the Betty W. Briscoe Award for academic excellence.  He officially started his career teaching Social Studies at Patuxent High School.

Mr. Pirner began his administration career with SMCPS, being appointed as Assistant Principal at Chopticon High School in 2016. That year, his safety and security team was recognized with the Maryland State School Safety Team of the Year Award.

 Mr. Pirner is currently working on his Ed.D. in Educational Leadership, at the University of Maryland, College Park.



Mrs. Venetta Smith, ext 38116, E-Mail  

10th Grade, Buses, SGA

Mrs. Smith has been employed by St. Mary’s County Public Schools as an Assistant Principal at Chopticon High School for nine years.  She has served in the field of education for twenty three years.  She is a second generation educator and her daughter is also a teacher.  Ms. Smith received her BA degree from Norfolk State University in History/Social Sciences and her Master’s Degree in Education from Regent University.  She is a former Social Studies teacher and department chair and has worked for the Norfolk Public School system for eight years and Howard County Public Schools for six years.  Some of her awards and accomplishments include:  Teacher of the Year History Day – Central Maryland District 2004, the Howard County Commissioner’s Award 2007, Who’s Who Among American Teachers 1996 and 2002.  She also worked for the Maryland State Department of Education (MSDE) as an Item Writer for the High School Assessments and on the Item Review and Rangefinder Projects.  She worked as a developer for the Maryland Voluntary State Curriculum and a test item writer for American College Testing (ACT.)  Ms. Smith is an educational leader who believes in motivating individuals to excel and strive for excellence.  She believes that all students can and will learn given the opportunity. 



Ms. Denise Coyne,  ext. 38116, (E-Mail)                                                     Testing, 504/PST Chair, National Honor Society

Ms. Denise Coyne started working for St. Mary’s County Public Schools in 2003. During her time here she has worked as a school counselor at Dynard Elementary, Evergreen Elementary and Chopticon High School before becoming an Assistant Principal. Ms. Coyne began her career in education in Harford County Public School then moved halfway around the world to work at the Singapore American School for seven years before moving back to Maryland. She earned her BA in Psychology from Goucher College and her Master’s Degree in Education from Loyola University. She also holds post graduate certifications in Administration & Supervision and Autism Studies from Towson University. 

Ms. Coyne’s professional philosophy centers around all children have limitless potential. She believes each child has value and positive contributions to make and continuous learning is essential to their growth and well-being. In keeping with our school initiative of Choose Kind; her favorite quote and motto for life is- “In a World Where You Can Be Anything, Be Kind."     






Mr. Ray Sapp, ext 38135, (E-Mail), Director of Student Activities & Use of Facilities

Administrative Support Staff:

Lynne Molen, Secretary to the Principal, Parking Permit Applications, ext 38103

Patricia Hertzbach - 11th & 12th Grade Office, ext 38115

Lynda Doherty, 9th Grade Office, Substitutes,ext 38117

Dorothy Sage, Counseling/Testing/PST/504 Office, ext. 38120

Jacqueline Somerville , 10th Grade Office/Buses, ext 38116

Gail Tiffany, Attendance Office, ext 38101

Susan D Ambrosio, School Bank/Student Debts, ext 38138