Ben Davis University Principal Named High School Principal of the Year in Marion County

Rebecca Daugherty-Saunders, principal of Ben Davis University High School (BDU), has been named District 7 High School Principal of the Year by the Indiana Association of School Principals. IASP District 7 encompasses all schools in Marion County.

Mrs. Daugherty-Saunders has taught in Indianapolis Public Schools, the MSD of Pike Township, and at Hamilton Southeastern High School. She became assistant principal of the Ben Davis Ninth Grade Center in 2006, later becoming principal. In 2013, she became principal of Ben Davis University High School.

Mrs. Daugherty-Saunders received her bachelor of science degree in secondary education from Ball State University in 1998. She earned her master of arts in educational administration and supervision from Ball State in 2005, and her Ed.S. from Indiana State University in 2017. She is currently pursuing her Ph.D. in educational supervision and higher educational leadership at ISU.

At BDU, Mrs. Daugherty-Saunders has overhauled the schedule, initiated a peer tutoring program, developed opportunities for students to gain authentic learning opportunities, and transitioned from primarily online courses to courses taught by credentialed instructors. Associate degree graduation rates have increased from 35 percent to 99 percent. Acknowledging her inclusive accomplishments, MSD of Wayne Township Superintendent Jeff Butts writes of Mrs. Daugherty-Saunders that “she organizes the school so that all social, economic, and racial/ethnic groups have equal access to all programs and provides the support needed for student success.”

Mrs. Daugherty-Saunders was nominated for the award by Ben Davis Ninth Grade Center Principal Steve Samuel. “Becky is an outstanding principal who leads the most successful early college in the state of Indiana, and perhaps the entire nation,” said Mr. Samuel. “I can personally attest that she is deserving of this nomination as one of the very finest principals in Indiana.”

For more information on Ben Davis University High School, visit

The Metropolitan School District of Wayne Township provides multiple pathways to success for more than 16,000 students, preschool through high school. Located on the west side of Indianapolis, MSD Wayne works in partnership with the Wayne Township community to help every learner achieve excellence. To learn more about MSD Wayne, visit, or follow us on Facebook at and Twitter @WayneTwpSchools and @WayneTwpSuper.