Swampscott elementary school principal comes out as transgender

SWAMPSCOTT, Mass. (WHDH) — The principal at Stanley Elementary School in Swampscott announced that they are transgender and will be transitioning into a woman.

Shannon Daniels, 52, said recent personal and professional challenges helped them realize they are transgender. They said they feel most comfortable presenting as a woman.

“I woke up and said, who am I and what do I really want? And I learned in that moment my best self is really female,” said Daniels.

Daniels and Swampscott Superintendent Pamela Angelakis sent letters to the school community explaining the change, along with advice on how to discuss it with children. Daniels said they will work to ensure this does not have a “negative impact” on the school’s community.

“I am proud to be the leader of this school and I sincerely believe that the ability to live my life openly and authentically gives me great serenity and will make me a more sensitive, empathetic and effective leader,” said Daniels in their letter.

Last year, a principal in Chestnut Hill shared he is transgender as he transitioned from female to male. Daniels said they have been in touch.

Parents who spoke with 7News said they support Daniels’ decision.

“I’m so glad you could share with us and you have our full support,” said Meg O’Neill.

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