Interim principal to lead MTHS next school year

By Annika Prom, Lifestyle Editor

MTHS will be led by an interim principal next year, following an announcement from Edmonds School District (ESD) Superintendent Kristine McDuffy in a staff meeting just after 2 p.m. in the theater.

McDuffy and outgoing Assistant Superintendent Patrick Murphy announced that the district’s hiring team chose to not offer the position to one of the three finalists for principal. As a result, MTHS will operate under an interim principal next year.

Related story: Community forum for three principal finalists

“We had three strong candidates who each had qualities and experiences that resulted in them being finalists,” McDuffy said in an email sent to MTHS families and staff as well as to BTMS families. “However, we have decided to continue the search to bring Mountlake Terrace High the leader needed to move this school community forward.”

“We want to honor the expectations you and others have shared for finding a leader that fully matches the qualities and experiences needed and desired for your school community,” McDuffy wrote.

Current Principal Greg Schwab has accepted an offer to become an ESD assistant superintendent starting July 1. Last week the applicants for the principal position were narrowed down to Marysville School District administrator Ray Houser, current Terrace Assistant Principal Peter Schurke and Kamiak High School Assistant Principal Stephen Shurtleff.

McDuffy said she is currently looking for an interim principal who will be chosen by the end of this school year. Schwab has said that during the 2017-2018 school year, a committee will restart the full hiring process around January and February when there are “a lot of candidates that are looking for principal positions.”

“I think we want to make sure that the person that we hire is the right fit for the school. We feel like we need to continue to work to find that person,” Schwab said. “The candidates who were the finalists were three quality candidates, but at the end of the process, it was determined that those candidates were just not the right fit.”

For anyone who may be confused or uneasy about the decision, Schwab said to “trust the process” because other schools have dealt with similar situations. In fact, Terrace was led by an interim principal in the late 1990s for a year when former social studies teacher Bruce Beaman took the helm.