Douglas High School assistant principal considered for promotion |

Douglas High School assistant principal considered for promotion

by Amy Alonzo

Superintendent Teri White has chosen Douglas High School Vice Principal Joe Girdner as her recommendation to serve as the district’s next high school principal.

“He has a very good educational background and quality high school experiences,” White said. “He understands the role of positive relationships.”

White said she will recommend Girdner be hired for the position at the next school board meeting, set for 3 p.m. July 11 at the district’s airport training center. The seven-member board will make the final decision on the position.

The district announced in the spring that Douglas Principal Marty Swisher would be moving within the district to serve as principal of ASPIRE Academy High School, a position made vacant by the retirement of Principal Michelle Trujillo. Swisher also will oversee the district’s alternative education program and Jacobsen High, offered at China Spring Youth Camp.

Around 10 applicants threw their hats in the ring for Swisher’s position, including a candidate from as far away as Alaska, White said. Of those who applied, only two were selected for interviews, White said.

Interviews were conducted on Friday by management and leadership committees comprised of teachers, classified representatives and district office employees.

In addition to interview questions, the committees created impromptu scenarios that tested candidates’ “ability to think on their feet and problem solve,” White said. “He thought well and responded well on his feet.”

Girdner was hired as vice principal at Douglas in 2014. Prior to that, he worked from 2004-2014 at Carson High School. When he left Carson he was serving as vice principal.

The salary range for the position of Douglas principal starts at $80,267 and goes up to $99,031, White said. In addition, the district offers a longevity bonus for employees who have more than five years of experience within the district.

“There’s a philosophy of grow your own,” White said.

According to the district’s website, the district also is hiring a new activities dean, following the resignation of Jeff Evans, who left to serve as principal of Eureka High School in Eureka County, west of Ely. In addition, the district is also hiring for a vice principal, the position currently held by Girdner. Both job openings were posted Monday.