The students and staff of Westminster High School consider their principal banner-worthy.
Every time one of the school's sports teams wins a state championship, a bedsheet painted with congratulations finds its way to the front windows of the high school.
This week, a banner hangs for Sherri-Le W. Bream, who has been named Maryland's Year 2000 Principal of the Year, a distinction her school apparently considers the administrative state championship.
"People have just gone crazy around here," said Bream, whose office is filled with so many flower arrangements, fruit baskets, cards and cookie trays that it looks more like a gift shop than a school administrator's office.
"I'm really very pleased," she said. "I'm not really into awards -- I get really embarrassed pretty easily -- but I think it's nice that the profession gets recognized."
The award from the National Association of Secondary School Principals means Bream will join the 49 other state winners at a conference in October in Washington where they will spend several days working with U.S. Education Secretary Richard W. Riley.
It also means that Bream has homework to do -- six essays due in two weeks -- to be considered for the national award.
A graduate of Westminster High School, Bream became principal of the state's largest high school -- and the county's first female high school principal -- in 1990.
Before her appointment, she was an assistant principal at Westminster High for five years, a biology teacher and science department chairwoman at Liberty High School for five years and a biology teacher at South Carroll High for two years.
Bream also taught at North Dorchester High School on the Eastern Shore for three years.
She earned a bachelor's degree from St. Mary's College in science with a minor in education and a master's degree in biology from Humboldt State University in Arcata, Calif.
Bream taught general biology and botany at the university for a year and a half.