Pineville Independent welcomes new principals

Published 12:07 pm Friday, June 21, 2024

Pineville Independent Superintendent Russell Thompson introduced the school’s new principal and assistant principal on Wednesday afternoon during a meet and greet in Common’s area.

Dr. Jarryd Boster has been named the new principal and Mr. Michael Wilson is the assistant principal. Mrs. Catrina McDermott, who has served as Pineville’s principal for the last six years, will be moving up to take on a new administrative role in the central office.

“That is going to even further our strength as an administration team. In six years working with Mrs. McDermott, she’s never missed a deadline. She’s a workhorse and along with Dr. Boster and Mr. Wilson I feel like we have formed an absolute powerhouse of an admin team. I can’t wait to pull back our sleeves and get to work with these guys,” Thompson said.

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Boster earned his Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees at Morehead State and began his teaching career in Fleming County at Simons Middle School. He coached football there went on to coach at Fleming County High School while still teaching at the middle school.

“After several years there I had the opportunity to move back home — my wife was here and I planned on marrying her so I had to get back home. I took the role as principal at the J. Frank White Academy,” Boster said.

With J. Frank White on the campus of Lincoln Memorial University, Boster continued his education there and was able to obtain his doctoral degree in Curriculum Instruction as well as Instructional Leadership.

The last few years Boster has taught at Bell County High School and had the opportunity to  coach football with Dudley Hilton.

“I was fortunate to be a part of his program up on the hill and help him in any way that I could.” Boster said. “This opportunity became available and it was a perfect fit so I had to take it.”

He said one of the most interesting things about Pineville Independent is that it’s considered one school that houses Pre-K through 12th grade.

“When we do something we can grow it from the ground up. So as we develop our programs we can build them in a way where it affects students all across the spectrum. We can start our building process much earlier than other schools can and implement that with fidelity throughout the program. That was very attractive,” Boster said.

He was drawn to Pineville because it’s a community school.

“People have bought in here and that’s what I’m looking for. I can come in and we can work as a team together as a community and affect change in a positive way,” Boster said. “That will allow us to be able to turn out a student that is highly competitive in today’s market. The market is always going to be changing so we have to create the best possible learners that we can and people who are already equipped with the skills they need as soon as they hit the market.”

Thompson said Boster stood out in a crowded field of applicants for the principal position.

“We had a lot of great applicants, a lot of people that brought different things to the table. We went through the interview process and it was a very fair and professional interview process,” he said. “I feel like getting Dr. Boster on the team was a great start. He’s going to bring a lot of innovative ideas in education to our district.”

Wilson is a 2013 graduate of Middlesboro High School. He went onto play golf at Morehead State for three years then transferred to the University of Kentucky where he completed his Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees.

“My first teaching job was at Paris Independent Schools, I taught there for five years and moved back to Middlesboro where I spent the last two. I got my Rank I principalship from the University of the Cumberlands. I’ve really only been back home for three years, we’re enjoying it and I’m happy to be home,” he said.

Wilson said he wants to bring an innovative curriculum and teaching style to Pineville.

“I want to make sure that our students are engaged. I want to make sure that our teachers remain practitioners in the classroom. I don’t really believe in stagnation in the classroom, I don’t like kids sitting around and just doing busy work,” he said.

Wilson added that education has changed a little bit in recent years with today’s students being harder to keep engaged.

“They require a lot more focus in your lesson design. If you’re not focused on creating authentic, real-world scenarios in your lessons then you’re not going to engage them,” Wilson said. “My expertise is in project-based learning. I believe that project-based learning is transformative, it’s a hands-on approach to learning that has kids creating solutions to real world problems. That’s what I believe in and what I hope to help our teachers achieve.”

Thompson praised Wilson for his youth and energy as well as his innovative ideas.

“We’re going to be able to grow and build a district that is pushing the edge of achieving things academically and athletically that have never been achieved here before,” Thompson said. “I feel like the board has charged me with the job of bringing the most talented people in here to put in front of our students. With Dr. Boster and Mr. Wilson I feel like we’ve hit an absolute home run.”

He added that he thought the district’s parents would be very pleased with the direction the school is going in.

“I think our students are going to be excited and engaged in education. They’ll become better learners and they’ll grow to become successful and be ready to take on that next step in life, whatever that may be,” Thompson said. “I’m very thankful to everyone through this process for their patience and willingness to give input. I hope they feel like I’ve received their input and that we’ve made a good decision. I don’t think I could have hand picked two better men to be here and to put in front of our students.”