Prince George's County Public Schools
Helena Nobles Jones

It is with heavy hearts and great sadness that the Charles Herbert Flowers High School community acknowledges the passing of our much beloved Mrs. Helena Nobles-Jones on March 15, 2017.  Mrs. Jones was the first principal of Charles Herbert Flowers High School, opening the doors of “the Mecca of Excellence” in August 2000 and retiring in June 2012.

At the request of the school community in 2012, the Prince George’s County Board of Education voted to honor the legacy of this dedicated master educator by naming the auditorium in her honor.  On March 25, 2013, the Helena Nobles-Jones Auditorium was dedicated at Charles Herbert Flowers High School.

An uncompromising force to be reckoned with, Mrs. Jones touched the lives of thousands of children from whom she demanded a respect for education with love, majesty, concern, caring, and discipline.  A talented leader, she was a role model to many educators, and noted for her honesty, guidance and wisdom.

Our deepest condolences are extended to her daughter Ms. Kyva Jones and her family.

Biography of Helena Nobles-Jones

Helena Nobles-Jones was born, reared and educated in Kinston, North Carolina. She was the third of eight daughters born to the late Leroy and Hazel Nobles. Although her father, a sharecropper, was forced to leave school in the third grade, he always had a desire to learn. Within the household, he stressed the importance of finishing school and earning the highest grades possible. As a result of his influence, Mrs. Jones was valedictorian of her high school class. Her academic record and SAT scores earned her a state scholarship, which she used to attend North Carolina College. She credited her teacher, the late Alice Hubbard for insisting she use her God-given ability to stay ahead of her class, read every classic she could find, and make the grades to qualify for a scholarship. According to Mrs. Jones, other than her family, Mrs. Hubbard was her greatest cheerleader, encourager, role model, and supporter.

While in college, Mrs. Jones was a member of many organizations including the Student Government Association, Thespian Club, the National Education Association, and Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. Because of her impeccable record, the Dean of Women selected her to be a senior advisor for freshman women. Parents and the Dean of Women honored her for outstanding leadership, while she served in this role.

Mrs. Jones was one of six national winners of a Ford Foundation fellowship to attend The Ohio State University, where she received her Master’s degree. She was a Danforth and Rockefeller fellow, and participated in programs of study at prestigious universities such as Harvard, Yale, and Vanderbilt.

She spent 32 years in the District of Columbia Public Schools system as an English teacher, Dean of Girls, assistant principal, and principal before retiring as an assistant superintendent. She earned a reputation for being a tough, but loving principal who believed that schools must educate children, and at the same time build character through discipline.

Mrs. Jones returned to education as a principal from 1998 to 2000 at Northern High School in Baltimore City. In 2000, she was approached by former Prince George’s County regional super- intendent Marcus Newsome about coming to Prince George’s County to open Charles Herbert Flowers High School.  At Charles Herbert Flowers High School, she vowed to honor and uphold the legacy of the school’s namesake, Dr. Charles Herbert Flowers, one of the original Tuskegee Airmen. Her “passion” for learning was the driving force behind the numerous accomplishments of the students and staff at the “Mecca of Excellence.”

An esteemed educator, Helena dedicated 46 years of service to education. She appeared on local, national and international television programs, including CBS’s Face the Nation, ABC’s Good Morning America, CNN Global, and C-Span. Articles about her have appeared in The Washington Post, Afro-American, Los Angeles Times, Baltimore Sun, The Gazette and the Prince George’s Journal.  She also served as the keynote and guest speaker at numerous schools and churches throughout the country.

Throughout her career, she was the recipient of many local and national awards. Her two most notable awards included the prestigious Reader’s Digest’s American Heroes in Education award and The Washington Post’s Distinguished Principal of the Year for Prince George’s County in 2005.  In 2012, the Prince George’s County Board of Education voted to grant the request of the Charles Herbert Flowers High School community to name the auditorium at the school in her honor.

Mrs. Jones was the widow of her dear friend and husband, Tony Jones, who was also a retired educator and the proud mother of Kyva Jones, an educator in Prince George’s County Public Schools.