Current Stevenson Elementary School principal Lisa White will soon be transitioning out of that position at the end of the month and current assistant principal Robin Cornelius will be serving as the school’s interim principal for the remainder of the school year.
White will be taking on a new role in the Russellville Independent School district. She will be the new Literacy Outreach Coordinator, a position that has been created because of the $1.5 million federal literacy grant the district recently received.
“She is going to be the perfect person to fill this vital role,” said superintendent Leon Smith.
Smith met with the Stevenson Elementary site-based decision making council on Monday to determine what the best course of action for the school would be in replacing White.
The council could have elected to go ahead and try to hire a new permanent principal right away, but instead decided to make Cornelius the interim principal for the remainder of the year. She will take over as Stevenson interim principal on Nov. 1.
“Mrs. Cornelius is going to be an outstanding interim for the following reasons,” Smith said. “First and foremost, she loves this district, our kids, and our staff. She really wants to be in Russellville. She isn’t using us as a stepping stone for another district. She is very talented and has a very deep understanding of elementary curriculum and instruction. She is an outstanding guided-planning and coach for teachers. She knows our kids, families, and our staff. She understands the PASS program and can continue to facilitate it to make it a very good program for SES. She has experience with ‘Leader in Me’ and will provide positive support. She is a strong disciplinarian and she has very high standards for classroom instruction.”
Cornelius is looking forward to starting her new role as interim principal.
“I am so excited to have been selected as the Interim Principal at R.E. Stevenson,” she said. “I am looking forward to building strong relationships with students, staff, and our families. My passion has always been centered on ‘kids first,’ and with that in mind, you can expect that I will work diligently with all of our teachers to make sure our students have every opportunity possible to learn and grow academically. I believe in our district motto – every child, every day!”
Smith said that he plans to post the Stevenson principal job in March and hopefully will have a new permanent replacement hired by May.
“That should give us plenty of time to transition for the next school year,” Smith said.
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