As the current school year winds down, Luther Public Schools will open in the fall with three new principals. The school board, in a Special Meeting Monday, accepted the resignation of Elementary Principal Sheila Wilson who is retiring. High School Principal Jerry Martin announced his resignation back in February, and current first-year Middle School Principal Shawn Meek was hired to take Mr. Martin’s position at the high school.
Superintendent Barry Gunn said his committee has interviewed seven candidates for the middle school principal position and is excited about the ideas the candidates propose and a decision could be made this week. He said the district will begin advertising for the elementary opening this week. There is no current Luther faculty who possess the elementary or middle school principal certifications, so the two new principals will be new to the district.
Wilson came to Luther four years ago and will finish a 31-year career in public education as a classroom teacher and administrator. She told The Luther Register, “I’ve always held the belief that a person should quit while things are going well. Too many people hold on too long. I lived that philosophy when I was a classroom teacher. I always stopped the lesson way before my students wanted. When I did, my students longed for more and were sad for the lesson to end. Now, I’m simply taking my own advice. Yes, there’s still more work to do at Luther Elementary, some ideas I would have loved to see blossom, but I’ll leave that for those who follow. I may still long for a little more, but only a little. I hope those I leave behind do, too.”
In her retirement letter, Mrs. Wilson thanked the Board of Education, administrators and those who hired her, particularly former Superintendent Dr. Sheldon Buxton who passed away a year ago.
In the end, I am most grateful to Dr. Sheldon Buxton who for three years allowed me to spread my wings and tackle the tasks of the elementary school by providing me the utmost support, guidance and resources. He allowed me to find my voice,” Wilson wrote in her retirement letter.
Board member Sherri Anderson said she appreciated Mrs. Wilson and especially her annual shoe project at Christmas time. “It is an awesome project,” Anderson said.
In other news, the board accepted Mr. Gunn’s suggestion to not require any make-up days following the seven-day teacher walk-out earlier in April and two snow days earlier this semester. He said since the district abides by the hourly requirement for instruction instead of 180 days, the district surpassed the required 1080 hours with a total of 1101.17 hours. The last day of school is May 15, 2018.
The board met to address a routine paperwork matter involving the payment of bonds that voters have previously approved in bond elections for transportation (buses) and the construction of the high school. As part of the process, the board awarded a bid for the $980,000 issuance of General Obligation Building Bonds to the lowest (and only) bidder of BancFirst with an interest of 3.10%.
“We can’t say enough about local banks who step up to help their local school districts,” said Ron Fisher, president, Stephen H. McDonald & Associates, who handles the school bond finance paperwork for the district.