New principal appointed for Mineola Elementary

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Two new administrators were hired for Mineola campuses Monday.

The school board approved Brittany Thompson as the new principal of Mineola Elementary School and James Knabendshue as assistant principal at Mineola Primary.

Four new teachers also joined the staff at the primary campus, Sadie Adams and Callie Swaner for first grade and Amy Castleberry and Stephanie Pullen for second grade.

Kelly Kennedy was hired for middle school English language arts and reading.

Two teacher/coaches were also hired: Regina Cooper (middle school) and Allen Wilson (high school).

Resignations included Martha Crump, first grade; Khindra Kent, third grade; and Jaime Ellison and Brett Powell, fifth grade.

Staff positions and resignations were also approved for Wood County Special Education Co-op.

The board approved a plan to have two Mineola teachers trained as reading specialists to comply with the state’s new Reading Academy guidelines in the lower grades.

The district will have a memorandum of understanding with the Region 7 Education Service Center to provide the training for the MISD pair, who would then in turn train Mineola teachers in the science of reading.

As curriculum director Jennifer Knipp explained, new teachers coming out of college have been trained in this technique, but teachers already in the system will need the training.

The board discussed whether it would be better to have Region 7 administer the entire program rather than put the responsibility on the two local instructors.

“I would put our people up against Region 7,” Knipp said.

Board President John Abbott noted that it would be an advantage to have the two on campus all the time for assistance.

The program could also be expanded beyond the required elementary grades.

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