Arlington principal resigns following DUI charge

An Arlington County principal has resigned following a DUI charge earlier this month.

A letter sent home to Drew Model School families from superintendent Patrick K. Murphy said that school principal Jacqueline Smith was retiring from her job for “personal reasons.”

Smith was pulled over at 3:21 a.m. on March 7 on suspicion of drunk driving after an officer saw her “weaving in and out of traffic” and “close to striking several parked vehicles,” said Arlington County Police spokesman Dustin Sternbeck.

After Smith failed a field sobriety test, authorities said, she was arrested and taken to the Arlington County Detention Center, where she was released the next day.

Theresa Bratt, who recently retired as an Arlington administrator with 40 years of experience, is serving as interim principal for Drew Model School, Murphy said in the letter. Smith’s effective retirement date was March 17. She was on leave last week.

“I have been grateful for my 21 years in Arlington as a teacher, assistant principal and principal,” Smith wrote in the letter. “The support I have received through the years from Dr. Murphy, APS administrators, the School Board, and the many dedicated teachers and educational leaders throughout the county has been greatly appreciated.”

Michael Alison Chandler writes about schools and families in the Washington region.

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