The lone remaining candidate for principal of the Blue Heron Middle School and OCEAN K-12 program is Kristi Queen, an 11-year assistant principal who expressed an eagerness to integrate herself …
The lone remaining candidate for principal of the Blue Heron Middle School and OCEAN K-12 program is Kristi Queen, an 11-year assistant principal who expressed an eagerness to integrate herself within the existing system.
After eight years as assistant principal of Shorecrest High School in Shoreline, Queen did another three years as assistant principal of the Mukilteo Explorer Middle School in Everett.
Queen attended a public forum at Blue Heron June 22, the evening after she and another finalist were interviewed (the second finalist withdrew), and was asked by members of the public what her preferred approach to discipline was.
Queen advocated a preventive approach of teaching students how to behave properly, with frequent reminders, to help avoid the need for more punitive measures.
When asked what drew her to the Port Townsend School District, Queen noted how smaller schools allow school staff to know their students better on a more personal level, which should help them respond to problems more quickly.
“I’ve been so impressed with the community partnerships that I’ve already seen in place,” Queen said. “Instead of me coming in and saying, ‘Oh, they’ll need this and this and this,’ I can ask you, ‘What do you see as your strengths?’ And we can continue to build bridges from there.”
If hired, Queen pledged to “stick around for a while,” expressing her enthusiasm for “getting away from the I-5 corridor,” and for living life closer to the water.
When Port Townsend School District Athletic Director Lysa Falge asked Queen what her philosophy was with regard to middle school, Queen responded students need to be approached from a number of different directions at once.
“I believe in all sorts of extracurricular activities, and not just athletics,” Queen said. “Students need more than one anchor. Multiple activities can help keep them busy and engaged.”
Queen believes issues, such as bullying, can likewise be addressed by helping foster healthy social development among children, and last summer saw her pitch an after-school program to the South Everett/Mukilteo Boys & Girls Club, to be conducted at the Explorer Middle School.
Queen’s rationale with that program was aging children just want to be around their friends, and such partnerships can provide them safe places to play and continue being social after school, with structure and supervision.
Port Townsend School District Superintendent John Polm is slated to contact Queen’s references, after which he will announce if she will be hired.