New principal search underway

Former RJUHSD administrator Suzanne Laughrea assumes role as interim principal

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With principal David Byrd taking his leave from RJUHSD in March to fill the position of director of learning and support services in the Elk Grove Unified School District, the district is beginning the search for applicants to fill his place. In the meantime, RJUHSD has brought in Suzanne Laughrea to serve as interim principal to finish out the school year.

As part of the search for the new principal, the district is seeking input from the Roseville High School community to guide the process. The district held a meeting with teachers to determine the qualities they hope to see in the new principal, had teachers select students to give their input to the principal search, and invited parents to share their views at an RHS Parent’s Club meeting.
Assistant superintendent of personnel services and former RHS principal Brad Basham believes seeking out this input is essential to the rest of the selection process.

“The process is to first gather feedback from students and parents and staff in terms of the qualities and characteristics and behaviors they’d like to see in the next principal of Roseville High School, and then we use that information to help us to develop our job posting as well as questions that we use in the interview,” Basham said. “Then we will post the job online and some educational periodicals people use to search for jobs.”

 

(RILEIGH SHULL / EYE OF THE TIGER)
As RJUHSD looks to find a replacement to fill RHS’ soon-to-be vacant principal position, various administrators pursued input from the RHS community including teachers, parents and students.

According to Basham, the district posted the position last Friday and will leave it open for approximately the next three weeks. Members of the cabinet will then screen applications and select qualified candidates to interview.

After holding interviews for the new principal around the first week of April and choosing who will be granted a second interview, Basham and the district goal expect that the new principal will begin officially on July.

Laughrea has a history of teaching in many different schools in the Roseville Joint Union High School District as well as in Southern California, where she taught English. She also served the principal at Adelante for four years before retiring.

Laughrea’s background began at RHS while she was getting her Ph.D at UC Davis, where she did a quantitative study about four different RHS students, following them throughout their classes and activities in order to learn more about them. Laughrea is also thrilled that she will be back at RHS and continue grow the school for the end of the school year.

According to Laughrea, her work with Byrd has helped ensure the school continues to progress during her time as interim principal.

“I talked a lot with him about the vision of the school and what they’ve been working on with students [regarding] intervention period and restorative [practices],” Laughrea said.

Basham, executive director of personal services John Becker and superintendent Denise Herrmann are all involved with the search to find a qualified principal for Roseville High School.

 

(RILEIGH SHULL / EYE OF THE TIGER)

As Byrd prepares to say his final goodbyes to RHS, students participated in a panel with representatives from the District Office to express their thoughts about finding a new principal that fits their personal criteria. According to junior Merary Medina-Gutierez, letting students help in the process for finding a new principal helps ease the transition period.

“I think it was a bright idea for them to bring the students perspective because not only do you get to see what the students want but also what we think we should have as a role model,” Medina-Gutierez said. “I think it’s important when hiring a new principal to get the students’ perspective on a new person coming in and changing what you already have established from before.”

According to sophomore Brielle Wilton, the relevance of the principal in students day to day lives makes it necessary for district office employees to consider student opinion.

“I think that it is very important and very vital that we can give our own input, because at the end of the day, we are the primary customers and receivers of the principal’s work,” Wilton said. “I think it is really important because then they get to know what we want in a principal instead of someone who isn’t on the receiving end of it, and it is very important for students on this campus to have a good education and [an] enjoyable time at RHS.”