It’s clear that when Westminster High School Students return to classes next fall under a new principal, they will be in in good hands.
The three finalists vying to replace Principal Michael Lynch attended a public question and answer session Wednesday night in the lecture hall at Westminster High School. Lynch has taken a new position with the District as Director of Secondary Education.
The public was invited to hear Westminster High School Assistant Principals Kiffany Kiewiet and Matt Schmidt discuss why they want to become the high school’s new principal. They were joined by Shaffer Elementary Principal Gina Rivas, who was the third candidate put forward by the District Search Committee. Before moving to the Jefferson County Elementary School, Rivas served as an Assistant Principal at Chatfield Senior High School.
The three candidates provided opening and closing remarks and spent about an hour answering questions that were submitted to the Communications Department from the general public. All three candidates agreed on several important issues:
- The importance of parent, student and community relationships
- Support for competency based graduation guidelines and CBS
- The need for outreach to middle school students going to high school
- Ensuring a safe environment
Schmidt told the audience that he is passionate about kids and committed to Westminster High School. “I look at Westy as my second family,” he said. “The kids in our community deserve a high quality leader.”
In her opening remarks, Rivas said that while she has had great success and a great time at the elementary school level, she has long wanted to get back to working in a high school. “I love working with high school kids,” she said. “That’s where my passion is and that’s where I feel I am most effective.”
Kiewiet also focused on the personal connection with kids and the importance of leadership. “We need to meet kids where they are, pick them up and carry them across the finish line,” she said.
Superintendent Pam Swanson will make a recommendation to the Board of Education in the near future.