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Friday, May 6, 2016

Williford welcomes new principal

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Williford students are involved in a summer work program that puts money in their pockets and paint on the walls, July 10. Photo by Jody Shackelford
With the recent loss of Glenda Causbie as the Williford Elementary principal, the Twin River School District has hired Paulette Crouthers, who will oversee both facilities, as the new K-12 principal for the Williford campus as of June 23. The change marks the second consolidation in the past four years, following the 2004 merger of the Oak Ridge Central and Williford School Districts.

"This is my 12th year. I taught school and coached for six years and then I have been a principal going on six years," Crouthers said.

She formerly taught in Dixon, Mo., where she served as principal for grades nine through 12 but as of June she has adopted the Williford Campus of the Twin Rivers School District as her new school family.

Although Crouthers has traveled from Missouri, she is no stranger to the Natural State.

"I have friends that teach and are principals in Arkansas," Crouthers said.

"I went to school at ASU in Jonesboro and I always have loved Arkansas. I have a home in Eminence, Mo., which is just across the line and I just wanted a change, so here I am," she said.

While she enjoyed her time at ASU and found her appreciation for Arkansas, she said she married and had a family before finishing her degree at Southeast Missouri State University in Cape Girardeau.

"I got masters and specialist through William Woods University," she said.

While some might expect a slight culture shock transferring from a larger school, Crouthers said she was right at home with the Twin Rivers School District.

"I was looking for something smaller. I had been at a 3A school and I wanted a smaller campus. Arkansas people are just friendlier and nicer and I have heard the students are really good to work with. I really look forward to it," she said.

New to the district, Crouthers has a game plan for the 2008-2009 school year, she said.

"I will pretty much just set back and see how things are run. I don't want to come in and make a lot of changes at first. I will just kind of observe. I am here and I have an open door policy to my students, the faculty and the community," Crouthers said.

"In the past I started a Principal's Club. To be eligible the student must have a 3.5 grade point average and no referrals," she said.

Crouthers explained a referral is when a student is sent to her office for a disciplinary reason. "If they get sent to my office for anything, then that is a referral," she said. "So, if they get that then they get kicked out of the Principal's Club."

"Once a month we meet and I teach them leadership and give them books they have to read. We talk about the books, about leadership and all. Then I will bring in pizza for them or something to eat," she said.

The highlights of Crouther's Principal's Club are educational trips she plans to take with her members.

"I took my students in Dixon to the St. Louis Science Center and they really enjoyed that," she said.

With her official hire date of June 23, Crouthers has yet to preside over her first official day of school. Although, she has worked with the students who work on campus for the summer helping polish the grounds and facilities before school starts in late August.

"We have been painting and cleaning and really trying to spruce it up a bit," she said.

With two school board meetings under her belt, Crouthers said she feels the board will be "good to work for" as well as the administration from Williford's sister campus, Oak Ridge Central.

"We are working hand and hand with the other campus. The other principal and I have met several times and I think we are all going to be a real good team," Crouthers said.

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There are other reasons for her moving to an Arkansas School.

-- Posted by AVgirl on Sun, Jul 26, 2009, at 2:04 PM

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