McKINNEY — McKinney ISD is pleased to announce that Dr. Amber Epperson has been chosen as the new principal of Cockrill Middle School. The McKinney ISD Board of Trustees approved the decision at their regular monthly Board Meeting recently. Epperson, who currently serves as principal of Malvern Elementary, is a seasoned administrator who has been called upon to lead several campuses during her 11 years of service in the District.

The principal position at Cockrill became available in September when Dr. Melinda DeFelice accepted a position as the new MISD Senior Director of College and Career Readiness.

Dr. Amber Epperson

Dr. Amber Epperson

“We chose Dr. Epperson to fill the shoes of Dr. DeFelice because we feel like she has the qualities to maintain and move Cockrill forward in a very productive way,” said McKinney ISD Superintendent Dr. J.D. Kennedy. “Dr. Epperson has taken on tasks willingly that have been put before her over the past few years and has done it in an amazing fashion. I feel that she’ll be very successful in her new role at Cockrill Middle School.”

Epperson joined McKinney ISD in 2003 as a 4th grade teacher at Webb Elementary and quickly moved into a leadership role. From 2005 – 2007, she served as assistant principal at Webb and was named principal in 2007. In 2010, she was named principal of Valley Creek Elementary and then transitioned to Malvern Elementary in 2012 to serve as principal of that campus.

Prior to serving in McKinney, Epperson taught sixth grade in Mesquite ISD and served as a consultant at the Region 10 Education Service Center.

Schools under Epperson’s leadership have consistently demonstrated an increase in test scores and are noted for a strong culture built around school wide character education programs. In 2009 – 2010, Webb Elementary earned a TEA Gold Performance Acknowledgement in Math. Valley Creek earned TEA Gold Performance Acknowledgements in 2010 – 2011 for Comparable Improvement Reading/ELA, Reading/ELA, Writing, Science and Math, and in 2011 – 2012, they earned TEA Gold Performance Acknowledgements for Reading/ELA, Writing, Science and Math.

At-risk students in Bilingual and ESL programs have demonstrated academic growth each year during Epperson’s tenures as principal at Webb, Malvern and Valley Creek, and she was asked to serve on a Region 10 advisory panel to support schools working through the AYP (Annual Yearly Progress) stages.

Under Epperson’s leadership, Malvern implemented a school wide college-bound culture and was among only 250 schools from across the country recognized in Washington, D.C. earlier this year by the Alliance for a Healthier Generation for their efforts in promoting health and exercise among their students.

“I am truly honored to have the opportunity to lead Cockrill Middle School,” said Epperson. “I know Cockrill is an exceptional school with a rich culture of success and pride. I look forward to continuing the strong Cockrill traditions as I build relationships with the students, teachers and families who make our school so special.”

Dr. Epperson received a Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education from Oklahoma State University, Master of Science in Educational Administration and a Doctorate in Educational Administration from Texas A&M–Commerce.

For additional information on McKinney ISD, contact Shane Mauldin, MISD Communications Coordinator, at 469-302-4007 or


About McKinney ISD

One of the fastest growing school districts in Texas, the McKinney Independent School District currently enrolls more than 24,750 students in 20 elementary schools, five middle schools, three high schools, four alternative schools and one early childhood education school. The mission of McKinney ISD, the champion for progressive learning throughout the diverse McKinney community, is to inspire and equip all students to explore, develop and express their unique potential as innovators, critical thinkers and collaborators through challenging, engaging and diverse learning experiences in vital partnership with the community. Visit the district's website at