Seaford schools start year with new members of administration and staff

By Lynn R. Parks

When students in the Seaford School District started their classes this week, they saw lots of new faces in administrative offices. In addition to superintendent David Perrington, five principals and assistant principals have joined the district:

Seaford High School - principal Terry Carson and assistant principal Kyle Bentley. Former SHS principal Todd Fishburn is assistant principal at Fred Douglass Elementary. Blades Elementary School - principal Krissy Jennette. Former principal Heather Bethurum is now employed by the Indian River School District. Central Elementary School - Becky Neubert. Like Bethurum, former principal Jeff Forjan is working in the Indian River district. West Seaford Elementary - assistant principal Chad Luzier. This is a new position in the district. The district administrative staff also has three new employees: Supervisor of assessment and accountability - Duncan Smith Director of student services - Chester Cox. This is a new position for the district. Eliminated from the main office is the assistant superintendent position, formerly held by Albert DuPont. Director of instruction - Corey Miklus

Carson is the wife of former interim superintendent Kevin Carson, who left his position July 14. "I look forward to joining the staff at Seaford High School as we collectively work to take SHS to the next level," she said. She intends to concentrate on improving behavior and student safety in the school, focusing on instruction, hiring "the best possible staff" and "working hand-in-hand with our parents, guardians and community members to improve our programs." The new motto of the schools is Successful, Honorable, Self-Motivated.

Before coming to Seaford, Carson worked in the Cape Henlopen School District, as a math and special education teacher, a high school guidance counselor and a secondary school administrator. She has a master's degree in educational counseling and business administration from Wilmington University, where she has done advanced course work in school administration.

She is currently an adjunct faculty member at Wilmington University, where she teaches diversity in education, and volunteers with the Delaware Academy of School Leadership, specializing in the school evaluation process.

Bentley is director of the high school's Delaware New Tech Academy. "I am proud to be a part of the Seaford School District and look forward to continue serving our amazing students and community," he said.

He was one of four principals selected to participate in the Delaware Leadership Project, through which he completed a year-long residency at SHS last year. He has a bachelor's degree in elementary education and a master's degree in curriculum and instruction, both from Pennsylvania State University. At that school, he minored in Spanish and he has a certificate in international studies.

Prior to coming to Seaford High, he taught for five years at Julia de Burgos, a bilingual kindergarten through eighth grade school in the School District of Philadelphia.

Jennette has bachelor's and master's degrees from Salisbury University. She began her teaching career in Dorchester County, Md., where she taught second and third grades and served as a new teacher mentor and Title I specialist.

In 2003, she took a job with the Coalition of Essential Schools, helping schools through Maryland whose students were not succeeding on the state tests. At the same time, she was working toward a doctorate in educational leadership at Wilmington University.

Most recently, she was an assistant principal for Wicomico County (Md.) Schools.

Neubert comes to Seaford from the Delmar School District, where she was an administrator. She has also worked as an instructional data coach throughout the state.

"Along with the fantastic Central Elementary staff, I will work hard to continue the legacy of success established at the school by building strong relationships with parents, students, staff and community partners," she said. "I will work to cultivate a vibrant and challenging learning community that prepares students to thrive each and every day in our diverse world."

Up until this year, West Seaford didn't have an assistant principal. Luzier is a native of western New York and just moved to Seaford from Baltimore. "I am excited to get back to the small town morals and values that I grew up with," he said.

Luzier worked in the Anne Arundal County Public School System.

"My goal as a Seaford School District leader is to generate a contagious positive energy that inspires others," he said. "Mutual respect is paramount in producing students and staff who are willing to take risks in their learning and teaching, while recognizing that mistakes are actually learning opportunities.

"I value learning investigations revolving around research and technology. Equally important is teaching students by example that the right attitudes of respect, curiosity, confidence and commitment serve as cuilbing blocks to success in preparing themselves for college, careers and becoming contributing members of our global society."

Smith worked for 18 years as a teacher and building administrator in the Indian River School District. Most recently, he served for three years in the Office of Assessment and the Performing Management Office, both at the Delaware Department of Education. He said that he plans to provide administrators and teachers with performance data to help them better serve the students.

Like Perrington, Cox hails from the Caesar Rodney School District, where he worked for 22 years – as fifth-grade teacher, as assistant principal at Fifer Middle School and for nine years as principal of Star Hill Elementary School. "My goal is to ensure that our schools establish and maintain an environment where the students feel comfortable and safe so they can do their absolute best in the classrooms," he said.

Miklus, who has a 17-year career in education, has previously worked with the Caesar Rodney and Woodbridge school districts. He has worked as an elementary school teacher, assistant principal, principal and supervisor of instruction.

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