Archived Story

Yoder choice for deputy superintendent

Published 12:16am Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Dowagiac Union Schools District hopes to have Dr. Edwin D. Yoder on board as deputy superintendent by July 1.
Monday night in the middle school cafeteria the school board authorized Superintendent Dr. Mark Daniel to negotiate a contract hiring Yoder.
Yoder, of Auburn, Ind., brings almost 24 years of experience, including 19 leading and supervising change across diverse educational settings.
Yoder earned his Ph.D., or doctor of philosophy degree, in 2004 from Indiana State University in Terre Haute.
He also has two master’s degrees, elementary educational administration in 1998 and secondary educational administration in 1994, both from Indiana University in Fort Wayne.
Yoder earned his bachelor’s degree in industrial education from Ball State University in Muncie in 1987.
He taught industrial technology from 1987 to 1992 for Prairie Heights Community Schools in LaGrange, Ind., then served as assistant principal from 1992 until 1997.
Yoder was Churubusco, Ind., Middle School principal for Smith/Green Community Schools from 1997 until 2000.
With East Allen County Schools in New Haven, Ind., Yoder has been Harlan Elementary School Principal since 2008, Woodlan Junior/Senior High School principal from 2002 until 2008 and New Haven Middle School principal from 2000 until 2002.
Yoder serves on the state superintendent’s advisory roundtable for District 3, where he was Middle School Principal of the Year for 2006.
He presented at a national conference in Chicago on instruction in 2005 — the same year he also won an award for excellence in public policy and leadership.
Yoder graduated from the Indiana Principal’s Leadership Academy in a group of 32.
He is an Indiana Professional Standards Board-certified administrative mentor.
A former Rotarian, he sits on the  Fort Wayne Museum of Art board.
“He brought a lot of detail to the conversation and vision of kids succeeding and how they succeed. It was very refreshing,” Vice President Michelle Helmuth said.
Not only does Yoder offer “a true understanding of K-12 curriculum and how that flow works, instead of specializing in one,” Helmuth said, “he is a recognized team player with excellent communication skills.
“Another aspect that I liked is that he’s willing to bring three children into the district — an added investment in our education.”
Helmuth made the motion.
Julia Smith and Mark Dobberstein were absent.
It was the final meeting for Sherry File and Randy Cuthbert, who will be succeeded in July by Ronda Sullivan and Claudia Zebell.
“I was also able to be in the interview,” President Larry Seurynck commented, “and I was deeply impressed.”
“Dr. Yoder’s credentials are exemplary. His experience at the elementary level, middle school level and high school level makes him a unique asset to the school district. He understands all levels of education and the goals and intents we have to make education relevant to all of the kids and to engage them deeply in their learning experience. We will be greatly enhanced by Dr. Yoder’s efforts. I’m really excited for next year and confident that we can make a major change in the district.”
Yoder said when he drove into Dowagiac through town, “I was very much impressed. There seems to be a lot of energy in this town for me to be a part of.”
The board accepted the retirements of Vickie Herter from Justus Gage Elementary School and Carole Gillesby from Pathfinders; family medical leaves for Betsy Cornish, Sister Lakes Elementary School; Brooke Osbeck, Dowagiac Middle School; and Alison Yeo and Ashley Horvath, Justus Gage.
Sara Lawrence was approved as varsity girls volleyball coach.
The annual organizational meeting will be 7 p.m. July 18 at DMS.

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