The Times - Serving Waitsburg, Dayton and the Touchet Valley

By Dena Martin
the Times 

Dayton Elementary School principal and librarian resign

Principal position will remain unfilled for 2019-20


DAYTON—Dayton Schools Superintendent Doug Johnson announced the resignations of Elementary School Principal Denise Smith and Librarian Valerie Kerr at the July 17 school board meeting.

Smith was chosen from a field of three finalists as elementary school principal in August of 2017. Johnson said Smith has accepted an assistant principal position at an elementary school in Issaquah and said Smith began looking for other employment this spring, for both professional and personal reasons.

Due to budget constraints, the District is not planning to fill the elementary principal position at this time. Instead, Johnson will assume that responsibility for the coming year.

“We will be looking to utilize the skills of some of our other current employees to do some pieces of the superintendent and principal job. Our enrollment, 375 budgeted, only drives out funding from the state for about 1.6 principals and a .34 superintendent.

“Previously, the District has been able to support three administrators using local levy dollars. With the current changes in levy collection mandated by the state, that option is in jeopardy. The District will be trying this alternative plan this year as they prepare to complete a superintendent search for the 2020-2021 school year and see how they want to handle the principal position,” said Johnson, who will retire with the close of the 2019-20 school year.

Johnson said that Kerr has accepted a full-time position with the Port of Columbia and that the board is still considering how they will fill the middle and high school librarian position.


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