GMS says hello to new assistant principal

Tuesday, May 17, 2016
Stephanie Christopher (Banner Graphic/NICK WILSON)

During a time when so many of Greencastle's long-time teachers, officials and the like are deciding to move on, one "new" face in the community promises to bring a refreshing familiarity back to her hometown.

Stephanie Christopher, a 1994 graduate of Greencastle High School, received unanimous approval Monday at the district's regular monthly session to fill the newly-vacant role of assistant principal at Greencastle Middle School. She succeeds Amy Piskoty.

GMS Principal Shawn Wooden introduced Christopher to the board, saying the Ball State and Anderson University alumna (receiving a master's degree from the latter) finished at the top of a long list of candidates.

"We had a resignation a couple of months ago from our (then) current assistant principal and, at the time when we posted that we needed another, we wanted to make sure that we had a great pool of names," Wooden said in front of a large turnout. "By the time we set the interviews, we had 54 applicants, including three sitting principals who were applying for an assistant principal position.

"That made for some very interesting reading," Wooden continued. "Our decision was made with the help of Assistant Superintendent Mr. (Jeffrey) Hubble and Superintendent Mrs. (Dawn) Puckett and I'm glad to say that we've hired a Greencastle graduate who's coming home to be a GMS superstar."

"She has been a GMS superstar before," Puckett said, adding that she was privileged to have had Christopher in class when she was a student.

Christopher added that she had a rather unique experience with GCSC as she was a member of both the last sixth-grade class to have attended the district's former middle school and was therefore also a member of the first seventh-grade class at the current building.

"I've worked in the Anderson school corporation for most of by English teaching career," Christopher said Wednesday. "And then, when I got my master's in administration, (my family and I) moved to Rensselaer where I've been for six years as the assistant principal at their high school.

"It's a nice, quaint little town that has been good to us," Christopher continued. "But I'm ready to come home."

One benefit to Christopher's presence will be her extensive experience with the district's "One to One Program," a user-interface software utilized on nearly all students' school-supplied iPads.

"I think a lot of the things we're doing, as I've talked to these candidates, are what schools wish they could be doing," Wooden said. "She's coming from a school that's got One-to-One with iPads and has lots of experience with them."

In addition to the hiring of Christopher, several hirings, resignations, retirements and transfers were approved Wednesday.

They include: Troy Greenlee, resignation as eighth-grade math teacher at GMS and as head basketball coach at GHS; Rebecca Greenlee, resignation as guidance counselor at Deer Meadow Primary and Ridpath Primary; Chelsea Stanley, resignation as fourth-grade teacher at Tzouanakis Intermediate; Alyce Hopple, hire as school psychologist; Lauren Alspaugh, hire as guidance counselor at GHS; Laura Brentlinger, hire as summer school teacher at Deer Meadow Primary; Dan Hankee, hire as summer school math Jump Start teacher at GHS; Sharla Arnold, hire as KIDS Program coordinator at Deer Meadow Primary; Maria Stierwalt, hire as KIDS Program teacher at Deer Meadow Primary; Jessica Stockton, hire as KIDS Program teacher at Deer Meadow Primary; Carmen Cross, hire as KIDS Program teacher at Deer Meadow Primary; Lara Inlow Shields, hire as third-grade teacher at Tzouanakis Intermediate; Whitney Fajt, hire as long-term substitute teacher for Michelle Hendershot (FMLA) at Tzouanakis Intermediate and as fifth-grade teacher at Tzouanakis Intermediate; Autumn Ramsey, approval of unpaid FMLA at Deer Meadow Primary; Kelly Brown, resignation as secretary at Tzouanakis Intermediate; Joanie Earl, retirement as secretary at Deer Meadow Primary; John Jones, resignation as custodian at GHS; Thomas Hayes, resignation as custodian at Tzouanakis Intermediate; Ray June Turner, resignation as human resources director; Jeffrey McCarter, hire as maintenance technician; Tim Sutherlin, transfer from second-shift custodian at GHS to head McAnally custodian at GHS; Myrna Scheuermann, hire as KIDS Program instructional assistant at Deer Meadow Primary; Amy Lewis, hire as KIDS Program instructional assistant at Deer Meadow Primary; Nicole Bartels, hire as KIDS Program instructional assistant at Deer Meadow Primary; Denise Smedley, transfer from ECA treasurer at GHS to personnel and benefits coordinator at the district's central office; Brenda Brady, hire as secretary at Tzouanakis Intermediate; Callan Taylor, hire as substitute teacher; Chris Weeks, hire as substitute teacher; Nate Bryan, approved as assistant varsity football coach at GHS; Matt Helmer, hire as assistant varsity football coach at GHS; Joe Downing, hire as assistant varsity football coach at GHS; Lonnie Lawhorn, hire as assistant varsity football coach at GHS; Matt Plessinger, hire as assistant varsity football coach at GHS; Lindsay Wagner, hire as cheerleading coach at GMS; Brian Bridgewater, approved as volunteer assistant varsity football coach at GHS; Jeff McCall, approved as volunteer assistant football coach at GHS; Quinci Miller, approved as volunteer assistant volleyball coach at GHS; Jennifer Edwards, approved as volunteer assistant cheerleading coach at GMS; Jayme Barber, approval of adjusted annual salary as director of finance; Kellie Romer, approval of adjusted annual salary as executive secretary/department treasurer; and Gwen Morris, approval of pay adjustment.

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