Archive for Thursday, March 10, 2005

Jayhawk to Golden Eagle: District pegs next Glenwood Ridge principal

March 10, 2005

Cornhusker . . . Wildcat . . . Jayhawk.

Having earned degrees from two of those schools and in the process of receiving another from a third, you have to forgive educator Jan Hancock if she's unsure where her allegiance should lie during this week's Big 12 tournament.

But, no matter her dilemma in choosing between Big Red, Wildcat Purple or the Crimson and Blue, it's the burgundy and gold of Glenwood Ridge Elementary School's Golden Eagles that Hancock now finds herself rooting for more than all others.

Hancock has been pegged by the Basehor-Linwood School District as the next principal at Glenwood Ridge. She has approximately 17 years of experience in education and is currently the associate principal at Clear Creek Elementary School in the De Soto School District.

Hancock met with teachers, staff and students at Glenwood Ridge last week. Already impressed with the school district as a whole, Hancock said she came away from the Glenwood Ridge visit even more so.

"I met with the staff and the teachers and saw that they all have such a love and passion for the students and the school," Hancock said. "There is just so much there as something I'd like to pursue and be a part of."

Hancock has spent the last four years working in the De Soto School District, splitting her time between stints as a special education teacher and associate principal. She has also worked with the Holton Special Education Cooperative and the Lincoln public school system.

She has a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Nebraska, a master's degree in educational administration and leadership from Kansas State and is currently working toward a doctorate in educational policy and leadership from the University of Kansas.

The De Soto school board approved Hancock's resignation Monday, March 7. The Basehor-Linwood School Board is scheduled to vote March 21 on her prospective tenure at Glenwood Ridge.

Basehor-Linwood superintendent Jill Hackett said the school district reviewed 50 applicants interested in the Glenwood Ridge position. That initial list was pared down to a handful of candidates and Hancock was pegged as the best of the bunch, the superintendent added.

"We were fortunate to have the people we did, I believe," Hackett said. "She visited the school and everyone liked her. She's really nice and we really liked her for that school."

Hackett said her administration employed the same process to find a new Glenwood Ridge principal as they did two years ago when hiring a lead administrator for Basehor-Linwood High School.

"We used that same process when hiring (BLHS principal) Steve Blankenship," Hackett said. "We talked to several groups and asked them for their opinion. They all liked Steve.

"The same is true this time -- all the groups reached the same conclusion," she added.

If approved by the Basehor-Linwood school board -- school district administrators anticipate no problems with Hancock's hiring -- Hancock will replace former principal Linda McFarlane as the permanent Glenwood Ridge boss.

In January, school board members voted to fast track a resignation McFarlane submitted a week earlier.

Brenda De Groot, director of the Basehor-Linwood Virtual School, was installed as interim principal. Hackett said De Groot and Hancock will work together in coming months to transition from one principal to the next.

Hancock's official tenure will most likely begin in Aug. 2005.

In 2003, McFarlane was hired as a mid-year replacement for Tom Sack, a former principal who resigned after he admitted to improprieties on state assessment tests.

When asked if the revolving door at Glenwood Ridge worried her, Hancock replied simply, "That doesn't concern me in the least."

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