South Peace News
Prairie Junior High School in High Prairie welcomes a new principal, vice-principal and four new teachers to its staff for the 2018-19 school year.
Paula Taylor became the new principal and Troy Runzer as the new vice-principal.
“My vision is to work with the staff and students to make this a place for learning and accomplished goals,” says Taylor.
“I look forward to meeting parents and working with them for the success of their child.”
She has worked in education for 23 years, including principal for six years in the Peace-Wapiti School Division and four years teaching at Gift Lake for Northland School Division.
Taylor has also taught in British Columbia, Ontario, and several independent schools in China and South Korea.
She says she is a strong supporter of extra-curricular, athletic, and arts programs in the school.
Runzer has more than 16 years of experience in the classroom and has been a school administrator for more than six years.
He also teaches Language Arts 8.
Last year, he taught at Gift Lake School.
“I have always believed that the role of vice-principal is one of supporting needs in the school: support for students, teaching colleagues and our principal as we strive to remain a positive part of the community,” Runzer says.
He plans to get involved in extra-curricular activities.
Ashley Smith returns home to teach Language Arts, Social Studies and Drama for Grades 7-9.
Smith is a 2011 graduate of St. Andrew’s School in High Prairie. She graduated from the University of Alberta with a Bachelor of Education in 2018 and a Bachelor of Arts in 2016.
She appreciates the opportunity to come back.
“I thought it would be a good first step into teaching because I am familiar with High Prairie and the people,” Smith says.
She plans to coach badminton and curling and lead a drama club.
Keith Davidson teaches Science 7 and 8, and comes with 12 year’s teaching experience.
He, too, is returning to his roots, in a way, after teaching at an international school in China for 12 years.
“I have lots of family in the Peace Country, so I wanted to come home,” Davidson says.
He wants to start a music club.
Eugene Sano teaches Math 8 and 9, French 8 and 9 and Physical Education 7. He has nine year’s teaching experience in Edmonton and for Alberta Distance Learning Centre as a Math marker for French Immersion.
Sano plans to coach golf.
Cheyenne Simms teaches Social Studies 7, Math 8, Health 7 and 8 and Cree Culture. She is in her fifth year of teaching.
“I love working for High Prairie School Division,” Simms says.