Two Principals Leaving Positions
By John Lentz
Students at Southern Middle School and Robbins Elementary will be missing familiar faces at the principal's desk this fall when long-term principals Mike Metcalf and Heather Seawell leave their positions prior to the start of classes.
Metcalf, a principal at Southern Middle for more than eight years covering two separate periods, will stay in the Moore County system in an administrative position. He said he saw the move as a "tremendous opportunity" for professional growth.
"This new position is a great challenge, an excellent opportunity, and the timing was right to make a change," he said. "That said, I love Southern Middle School and remain very passionate about it."
Moore County Schools Superintendent Aaron Spence said he welcomed Metcalf's change to the school system headquarters.
"I am very pleased that Dr. Metcalf is moving to his new role in central office," Spence said. "He brings a rich understanding of student data and instruction to this position. He is well-respected in our community, and I am confident Moore County Schools will continue to benefit from his leadership and experience."
Metcalf will assume the position held by Drew Maerz, the former director of educational data, assessment and research. Metcalf will work in a similar capacity, but under a different title as the director of planning, accountability and research.
"The position has changed some," Spence said. "Dr. Maerz was responsible for data management, which will now be shifting to technology. He will focus on using the data to inform decisions about school improvement. The other aspects of the position, responsibility for testing, accountability and program evaluation, have not changed."
Metcalf, who said he was currently "in transition" between the old position and the new, called the new job a "redesign" from which he would "work with principals and school leadership teams on improvement plans" for the school system.
Seawell, the Moore County 2009-2010 Principal of the Year, has accepted the job of principal at East Montgomery High School in Biscoe beginning this fall. Spence said he was sorry to see Seawell go.
"Heather is a remarkable leader who has done a terrific job at Robbins Elementary," he said. "While I am excited for her and this new opportunity, I am sorry to see her go and know she will be missed in Robbins."
Seawell, a 14-year veteran of Moore County Schools, said she hated to leave.
"The students, staff and parents of Robbins Elementary have been so supportive of me," she said. "I can't thank them enough for all they've done to make Robbins Elementary such a great school. I also want to thank Moore County Schools for their support of me in my professional growth. I attribute whatever success I've achieved over the years to this fine system."
Seawell described her new position as an opportunity to "expand" as an educator.
"It was an extremely tough decision to leave because I was really happy at Robbins," she said. "I worked at North Moore High School and saw the position at East Montgomery as an opportunity to expand professionally. The chance came available so I decided to try something new."
Seawell was recognized earlier this year by Spence for her efforts to promote the "culture" pathway, one of the four "Growing to Greatness" goals outlined by the school board. Her work at Robbins Elementary was highlighted in a video shown to the school board and audience members last March at the board's monthly meeting.
Seawell is also a past recipient of the N.C. Science Teacher Association Student Teacher of the Year award.
Contact John Lentz at (910) 693-2479 or jlentz@thepilot. com.
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