Update on Elementary Principal Searches

Update on Elementary Principal Searches
Posted on 02/09/2023

Dear SDMA Families and Staff,

The School District of the Menomonie Area places great importance on communication with families and staff, and the district values the important partnerships that have been established across our school community. As planning begins to ramp up for the 2023-2024 school year, the district has initiated a new search process to fill two upcoming principal vacancies at Wakanda Elementary and Downsville Elementary Schools.

With the upcoming retirements of Oaklawn Elementary Principal Lori Smith and Knapp Elementary Principal Kristin Humphrey, the school district conducted a thorough search to fill these vacancies for the 2023-2024 school year. After screening all applications and considering input provided by the families and staff members at each school, internal transfer requests were approved this week for current Wakanda Elementary Principal Shannon Branch to become the next principal at Knapp, and for current Downsville Elementary Principal Keila Drout to become the next principal at Oaklawn. Mrs. Branch and Mrs. Drout will begin their new positions on July 1, 2023.

In order to find the best candidates to fill the principal vacancies at Wakanda and Downsville, a new search process and timeline has been established. The vacancies will be posted on statewide networks, input will be solicited from the families and staff members from each school, and it is anticipated that hiring recommendations will be ready for consideration by the school board by the end of March. After the hiring process has been completed, transition activities will begin at each of the schools impacted by these changes next school year. Opportunities for community and staff "Meet & Greet" sessions with each new building principal will be offered in the spring.

We are fortunate in the School District of the Menomonie Area to have such a wonderful faculty and staff dedicated to preparing ALL students to become lifelong learners, caring individuals, and responsible citizens. Questions about the principal search process can be directed to me or SDMA Director of Human Resources Samantha Hoyt.

Yours truly,

Joe Zydowsky