ESHS signs Berryville principal

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After an executive session at its May 9 meeting, the Eureka Springs School Board hired David Gilmore as the new high school principal to replace retiring Kathy Lavender. Supt. Bryan Pruitt said Gilmore has been principal of Berryville High School for 16 years and was previously an elementary school teacher and middle school principal in Berryville.

Gilmore graduated from Eureka Springs High School in 1996 and is excited to return to his alma mater, where he said he received a great education and is looking forward to creating opportunities for kids to follow their own interests and become happy, successful adults. Regarding the new choices students have in school now, he said, “It’s not like one size fits all, and we’ve got to keep up with trends and the job market.”

Pruitt commented Gilmore is a good fit for the district because he already has experience at all three levels yet is young enough to identify with beginning teachers and serve as a mentor. He said Gilmore has demonstrated excellent leadership skills and will be a great asset to the district and the community.

Great skills

Two ESHS students placed first in their divisions at the statewide SkillsUSA competition, and the board approved sending them to the national competition June 19-23 in Louisville, Ky. Tyler Crawford won in the plumbing category and Cole Rains finished first in masonry. In fact, ESHS students swept the masonry prizes with Kyle Rains finishing second and Jesus Balleza finishing third.

High school science teacher Eric Hearth told the board he took two students, Taylor Weaver and Savannah Shaw, to the Governor’s All-State Coding Competition in Little Rock. He said they faced challenging questions and were able to see what coding is like outside of a textbook.

Wagons Ho!

Middle School principal Cindy Holt said the Agriculture Extension Office brought over miniature Conestoga wagons as props to teach students aspects of the economy such as bartering, selling, and supply and demand. Students are also preparing for the annual economic fair on May 11. Following that experience will be Career Orientation in which students accompany someone in the community during a day to get a glimpse of what working in the real world will be like.

Also seventh graders got to experience the great outdoors at the Ozark Natural Science Center.

Other items

  • Pruitt presented the board policy manual, which included a few slight changes recommended by the Arkansas School Board Associations. The board approved the manual.
  • The board also approved the Special Education Assurances and Agreements which states the district will spend designated funds as they are intended.
  • The classified salary schedule for the next school year was approved.
  • Following the executive session, board members accepted the resignations of Chris Holt (aide) and Robert Belzung (bus driver). They approved hiring Jason McAfee (agriculture teacher), Daniel Behrman (middle school math teacher), Shawna Miller (high school science teacher), Angela Lemme (cafeteria staff), Susan Williams (part-time special education secretary), and Bill Parton (custodian).

Next meeting will be Tuesday, June 13, at 5:30 p.m.