Frank Redmon proudly presents himself as the product of a rural school system, albeit one in western Nebraska, so he is excited to return to such an environment as he steps into the role of Quilcene …
Frank Redmon proudly presents himself as the product of a rural school system, albeit one in western Nebraska, so he is excited to return to such an environment as he steps into the role of Quilcene School District superintendent July 1.
“I was attracted to the idea of a close-knit community with a family feel,” said Redmon, who has worked in school systems with student populations ranging from 250 to 22,000. “What I’ve come to appreciate about those smaller school systems is they have the ability to work together, as a whole, in ways that simply aren’t possible for larger systems.”
Redmon sees a district’s ability to move as a nimble yet integrated unit as important for better adapting to the needs of its students, especially during a period in education when school systems are being called upon to make what are deemed to be significant system-wide changes.
Although his most recent position has been as a researcher in education leadership and policy analysis at the University of Wisconsin in Madison, Redmon has served as the principal of the 10th Street Middle School, the Arts and Technology High School and the Tulalip Heritage High School, all in Marysville, Washington, from 2006 to 2010.
Redmon’s Washington state education experience also includes a 2003 stint teaching physics and integrated science at Newport High School in the Bellevue School District, as well as a 2004-06 term as assistant principal at Highline High School in Burien.
“I love the people of Washington,” Redmon said. “I even love the weather, believe it or not. I’m looking forward to recreation on the Olympic Peninsula.”
Redmon met in person with the Quilcene community May 12, on the last of three nights of superintendent candidate meetings with the community, and he was heartened to see that Quilcene shares so many of the positive traits he has come to expect from smaller school systems.
“It’s a somewhat isolated community, but it’s like an extended family,” Redmon said. “The people of Quilcene are mutually supportive. They look out for each other.”
He added: “I thought my biggest challenge would be to integrate myself into the community, but they’ve been very welcoming and open. I’ll still need to spend the time to develop relationships and establish channels of communication, but as long as I’m transparent, it should mostly be a matter of time.”
According to Redmon, one advantage he has coming into this position is the work that’s already been done by outgoing superintendent Wally Lis and the existing school board.
“They’ve done a nice job of putting Quilcene on a good path,” Redmon said. “There’s still plenty of work left to do as we align our plans, but we’re already working toward those goals.”
Redmon looks forward to interacting with the community again during the last week in June. The Leader will provide details of that meeting in an upcoming issue.