RUPERT • Three Minidoka County schools will have new leadership this coming school year.
Minidoka County Superintendent Scott Rogers said Tuesday that Suzette Miller will take over as Minico High School’s principal, Dan Rogers will become Mount Harrison High School’s principal and Sanie Baker will be principal at Acequia Elementary School during the 2012-13 school year. Former Mount Harrison Principal John Kontos will take a position as a counselor at Minico High School.
The changes were approved Monday during the district’s board meeting.
Dan Rogers was principal of Minico High School for 13 years. Miller was Acequia Elementary School principal for eight years and Kontos was principal at Mount Harrison High School for 10 years. Baker was a counselor at Minico High School for five years.
Scott Rogers said the district is grateful for the dedicated service of the administrators in their current assignments.
“They have all done some remarkable things in the many years they have worked in these positions,” Scott Rogers said. “We are very excited about the reassignments and the opportunities for growth, renewal and innovation that this kind of change provides.”
Scott Rogers said the new assignments were voluntary and accepted by all four administrators.
The shifts will come with small salary changes for some of the administrators as they move into each position’s salary schedule, Scott Rogers said.
“They were all doing a good job in their assignments, but the changes will give them a new opportunity to shine.”
Scott Rogers said school districts have been criticized for “maintaining the status quo.”
“You can’t say we’re maintaining the status quo in this organization,” Scott Rogers said.
Kontos, who has spent his 26-year career in the school district, said the shift is bittersweet.
“It’s kind of an emotional roller-coaster ride,” said Kontos. “I’m excited about the change but I’ve put my blood, sweat and tears into these kids at Mount Harrison.”
Kontos hired all but one of the teachers on staff at Mount Harrison, which is the district’s alternative school. When he became principal there were 50 students at the high school level. Today there are 175.
“I’m looking forward to getting into the hallways at Minico and interacting with the kids,” Kontos said. “I hope I can be a positive influence on them.”
Kontos said he hopes to bring what he’s learned at the alternative school to Minico and help keep more students in school.
“I really have to commend the team at Mount Harrison,” Kontos said. “I get a lot of the credit sometimes, but the teachers make the school what it is.”
Kontos said he’s also looking forward to working with the staff at Minico, especially Miller.
“I think Suzette will do a good job,” Kontos said.
Miller spent 20 years of her 25-year career in Minidoka County.
“I’m just thrilled at the opportunity and it means a lot to me that Dr. Rogers and the board has confidence in me,” Miller said.
Miller informed her staff about her assignment change Tuesday.
“There were some tears shed,” Miller said. “But I’m looking forward to meeting the Minico staff and I already know some of them.”
Miller grew up in Mini-Cassia and considers this an opportunity to give back to a community that has been good to her.
Baker was vice principal at Rupert Elementary for one year and worked for 10 years as an ESL and Spanish teacher in the Minidoka County School District.
“I’m really excited,” Baker said. “Acequia is a great community and it’s a good elementary school and I know they have good parental support out there.”
Dan Rogers could not be reached Tuesday for comment.
He worked for one year as Acequia’s principal and one year at Rupert-Big Valley Elementary School as vice principal.