JPS To Move Most Assistant Principals

Most Jamestown Public Schools assistant principals will be in a new location at the start of the school year.

In July, Tim Mains, Jamestown Public Schools superintendent, announced during a school board meeting plans to move assistant principals in the district. Schools with assistant principals include the three middle schools, Jefferson, Persell and Washington; the high school, which has two; and Fletcher and Ring elementary schools, which share the same person.

Mains said the change in assistant principals was started when one resigned, David Hickey from Jefferson Middle School. However, Mains said that wasn’t the only reason for moving assistant principals.

”Assistant principals, the group within the administrative structure, have been provided the least amount of support and development,” Mains said. ”We’re trying to make sure they grow and learn. One way is by moving them into new environments.”

Another reason for the change is to lessen the disciplinarian role for assistant principals. Mains said traditionally when a student needed disciplinary action, most teachers would send the child to the assistant principal to deliver punishment. Mains said this role as disciplinarian needs to change.

”The shift is an effort to free assistant principals to play a larger role as instructional leaders and help everybody in the system learn that discipline is not their primary responsibility,” he said. ”We’re in a period of transition to a new behavior management system, which turns the focus on positive behavior and spreads responsibility among all the adults in the school. It will be faster and easier to do this by breaking the bond that the assistant principal is a disciplinary role.”

The superintendent said one assistant principal will stay at her school, Elizabeth Antolina, whose duties are split between Fletcher and Ring elementary schools. The assistant principals who will be changing locations include Leslie Melquist to the high school from Persell Middle School; Shawn Fink to the high school from Washington Middle School; Dana Williams to Jefferson Middle School from the high school; and Brent Sutter to Washington Middle School from the high school. The new assistant principal will be Cheryl Twaragowski at Persell Middle School.