RCAPS enters new era

Board approves hire of three new principals, curriculum director

REED CITY — A completely new administrative team will lead Reed City Area Public Schools into the 2013-14 school year, although each staff member has a history with the district.

During a regular meeting on Monday, the board of education voted 6-0 to hire Monty Price as Reed City High School principal, Dean McGuire as Reed City Middle School principal and DeAnna Goodman as G.T. Norman Elementary School principal. Superintendent Tim Webster, who is new to his position as well, recommended the hires.

Monty Price

“I interviewed a lot of people,” Webster said during Monday’s meeting. “We have some awesome people right here in Reed City. I am very pleased with these three, and I am very confident they will be awesome administrators. The hardest part of being an administrator is the people skills and communication, and they’re masters at that.”

Price, who has been a teacher and administrator at RCAPS for 16 years, replaced Steve Westhoff, former superintendent and high school principal, after Westhoff retired at the end of the 2012-13 school year. Price has a master’s degree in curriculum and instruction from Ferris State University.

McGuire, who takes over the middle school principal role from Webster, has taught at RCMS for 18 years. He has a master’s degree in education administration from Central Michigan University.

Goodman brings 16 years of teaching experience to the elementary principal position, which was vacated by Tonya Harrison, who now will be the district’s K-12 curriculum director. Goodman has a master’s degree in educational leadership from Grand Valley State University.

“We want to make a real positive impact on students — socially, mentally, emotionally and academically,” Price said.

Webster noted a completely new administrative team will come with challenges, but given his history with each staff member, he is confident they are ready for the new responsibilities.

Dean McGuire

“Some of the challenge will be that so many things are new for all of us,” he said. “I can help them with the principal role because I’ve been doing that. But there’s so many details to nail down. We’ll have to hustle. The good news is we’ve got strong secretaries and support staff in place in those buildings.”

With the administrative shifts, the addition of a curriculum director position and the elimination of a district-wide evaluator position — which was introduced in the 2012-13 school year and held by former high school principal Tom Antioho — RCAPS will spend about $30,000 more on administration costs for 2013-14, Webster said.

However, that may be offset by additions to the teaching staff, he added, depending on the level of experience those candidates bring.

Also at the meeting, the board discussed the possibility of seeking a sinking fund millage to raise extra funds for “big ticket” building and facility upgrades and renovations. However, board members decided the upcoming school year is not the right time for such a request.

Board president Dan Boyer pointed out that with the new administrative team, district residents may feel more comfortable supporting the district once they see the new leadership in action.

DeAnna Goodman

Vice president Ed Raby agreed that waiting until next year to propose the millage would give the board and district administrators more time to plan the best way to raise support.

“You’re asking a community that historically doesn’t pass millages to pass one,” Raby said. “We’re going to have to come up with a way to convince them that that’s what needs to be done.”

The board will meet again at 5:30 p.m. on Wednesday at the board room in central office to complete a second reading on changes to the staff recall portion of the district’s layoff and recall policy.

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