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Big changes in county schools principal lineup

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By Ryan T. Butler

Nine of the district’s 12 public schools will see a new principal or vice principal for the 2012-2013 school year. The district will also be without an assistant superintendent. 

Assistant superintendent Gina Tovine has left the county to take a similar job in Orange County schools. Because of a stretched budget, the district doesn’t plan to fill the position for the immediate future. 

“We’re asking schools to make cuts so we have to do the same thing,” said Director of Administration Jeff Edison.

Recently vacated positions of STEM coordinator and Coordinator of School Improvement will also not be filled. 

 Bill Tovine, principal at Chiefland High School, followed his wife Gina Tovine to Orange County where he will be principal of  an alternative school. 

“The Tovines brought a lot of new ideas to the district,” Edison said. “I know they are going to do great things for Orange County.” 

Vacated principal positions have been replaced. 

Tovine has been replaced by Matt McClelland, who moves from Williston High School. 

McClelland, a CHS graduate, had served as principal of Trenton Middle/High School for the past month. He had been principal at Williston High School for the last quarter of the 2011-2012 school year and an assistant principal at CHS for three-and-a-half years prior to that. 

“McClelland wanted to come back home,” Edison said.  “He had a history with Chiefland and was very successful. He was well-qualified for that job or any other principal job in the district.” 

Dennis Webber, former assistant principal at Chiefland Middle School, will serve in the same capacity at CHS. 

Kelly Gore, formerly assistant principal at Williston Middle School, will replace Webber at CMS. 

Former Williston Elementary School Assistant Principal Angel Thomas will become principal at Chiefland Elementary School. Michael Homan, former assistant principal at Bronson Elementary School, will serve in the same role at CES. 

“(Thomas) is very well qualified and (Homan) was too. We try to look at the community and needs of the school and fill them accordingly. They’re proven leaders,” Edison said.

BES replaced Homan with Danielle Rosson, previously an assistant principal in Dixie County schools. 

Williston High School also replaced their administration vacancy with someone from outside the district. 

Eulin Gibbs, a 12-year veteran of Georgia middle and high schools, is now Williston’s principal. 

“Gibbs is very well qualified If you look at his leadership of a school with 1,200 students,” Edison said. “He has a prove track record of acaedmic success and in other areas. He has great experience in the entire high school system”

Williston Middle School replaced Gore with former county SEDNET coordinator Josh Slemp. Joyce Bullock Elementary School  filled it’s assistant principal vacency with Bob Lowyns, who had the same position at Chiefland Elementary School. 

Cedar Key School and Yankeetown School both replaced retired principals. CKS went with Dan Faircloth, a former principal and administrator for the school. 

YKS selected former Levy County STEM coordinator Suzzette Pelton as its new principal. 

“We’re starting to see some of the fruits of our labor. We have great leadership in the district. We a lot to look forward to, even with the new challenges,” said Director of Curriculum Patrick Wnek. 

“We’re very excited about the upcoming school year. Change is exciting. 

We have new opportunities and our people are well-positioned to perform at a high level. “