Principal named for new Re-2 school
Howard Disney will be the new principal at Highland Elementary School in Rifle when it opens in August 2003, Garfield County School District Re-2 has announced.
“It’s very exciting,” said Disney. “I’m not sure that it has hit me yet. I’m still kind of in a daze.”
Disney is currently the principal at Esma Lewis Elementary school, a third- through fifth-grade school. However, as part of the bond construction package passed by the voters in November 2001, Esma Lewis Elementary will undergo major renovations next year, and become part of a larger middle school campus with Rifle Middle School. Highland Elementary will be a kindergarten through fourth-grade facility. Fifth grade will remain at Esma Lewis for one more year.
Disney, who is in his second year as principal at Esma Lewis, was thrilled to have the opportunity to apply for the Highland Elementary position.
“I don’t feel like I have finished what I have started here,” he explained. “I feel like I have plenty of work to do, and I want to see it through and see what we – my staff and our great students – can accomplish together.”
Specifically, Disney believes that the Everyday Math and newly implemented Four Blocks Reading programs will make a big impact at Esma Lewis this year, and at Highland Elementary next year.
The position at Highland was hired internally. Two candidates applied for the job, but Garfield Re-2 Superintendent Dr. Gary Pack said Disney was the right man for the position.
“Mr.Disney is a highly energetic, highly enthusiastic individual and he, without question, is looking forward to the challenge,” said Pack. “We felt that because of the training he had in Four Blocks and Everyday math, and his existing relationship with the staff – many of which will likely move to Highland – that he would be the best choice.”
Disney will begin working on the transition process immediately. One of the first orders of business is to get a staff in place. The new staff at Highland will be hired internally and the process of accepting and evaluating transfer requests to Highland Elementary will begin within the next few weeks. Disney will also oversee orders for furniture and supplies for the new school.
Highland Elementary is located at Fir and 7th Street in Rifle. When open, it will have a capacity of 500 students. It will contain three rounds of kindergarten, and four rounds of first through fourth grade.
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