By Kavitha Cardoza
Brian Betts, principal of Shaw Middle School at Garnet Patterson in D.C. was found dead on Thursday in what is being investigated as a homicide.
On Tuesday Brian Betts was standing outside his school as usual, holding his coffee cup in one hand and shaking students' hands with the other.
"Good morning Darryl, how are you doing, son," he says. "I know them all by name. I want to start my day by talking to them, I want them to start their day by talking to me."
Betts believed his students had been disenfranchised and said he was determined to teach them how to "do school." He said he had faith they would do well on the upcoming standardized tests.
"I live under the philosophy that if you teach the curriculum with fidelity at a high level of engagement, eventually any test you give our kids will take care of themselves," he says.
Schools Chancellor Michelle Rhee says Betts was one of the best principals.
"The children are absolutely devastated," she says. "He was not just a principal but a role model and father figure to many of these children."
Rhee says this is a loss not only for the children, but also for the community.