Principal's Bio

Mrs. Cynthia Heckstall

Phone: 804-780-8288


Degrees and Certifications:

BA Fairmont State University MA Virginia Commonwealth University Postgraduate Professional License Endorsements: Elem.Ed., Middle Ed. Library Media Admin and Supervision PreK-12

Mrs. Cynthia Heckstall


Cynthia Heckstall began her educational career in Richmond Public Schools in 1996 as a fifth grade teacher at Woodville Elementary. Mrs. Heckstall spent three years at Woodville before transferring to Greene Elementary as a media specialist and later to Chandler Middle School.  Mrs. Heckstall accepted her first assistant principal position at G.H. Reid Elementary and after two years, became the assistant principal at Boushall Middle School.  This year marks her first year as Principal at Henderson Middle School. 

Mrs. Heckstall received a Bachelor’s Degree in Elementary Education from Fairmont State University in 1995. She received a Master’s Degree in Curriculum and Instruction from Virginia Commonwealth University in 2002 and an endorsement in Administration and Supervision from Virginia Commonwealth University in 2007. 

Mrs. Heckstall’s educational experiences have afforded her the opportunity to work with a diverse group of staff and students allowing her to collaborate with other professionals on a common goal of student achievement and support. Her educational philosophy is based on the belief that all students can learn with a supportive environment, knowledgeable leaders and a committed and focused educational team. 

Henderson Middle School

Henderson Middle School is located on the Northside of Richmond and serves a population of 440 students. The building was built in 1972 and still represents the open model that was popular at that time.  Student population is 99% African American, 1% ESL and 27% Special Education.   Henderson is a Title One school employing forty-one instructional staff including two Title One reading and two Title One math teachers.  Henderson currently has four long term substitutes in the areas of math and reading. 

Although Henderson is currently not meeting state accreditation, the administration and instructional staff is committed to ensuring that each student makes progress and is able to achieve to his or her capability. To help achieve this, Henderson provides several programs to support students and their families. One of those supports is Communities in Schools that aids families and helps connect them to outside resources while also providing mentors to students in the building. Higher Achievement and Next Up are two other support programs that provide afterschool tutoring and activity sessions to expose students to different programs such as cooking, dance and other performing arts. 

Henderson is also part of the VA 365 Backpack Program that offers daily snacks to all students and a backpack of meals to take home for the weekend.   Extended day and Saturday academy afford students extra time to improve their skills and knowledge and these extra sessions are taught by the school’s most talented and committed educators.  All of the above resources and programs share one common goal of student achievement and the enhancement of the surrounding community.