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Sequim school leaders get new roles

Three top Sequim School District administrators have new roles for the 2011-2012 academic year.

Vince Riccobene, principal at Helen Haller Elementary School since 2003, is shifting to a position within the district administration office as director of instruction, heading up curriculum adoption and assessment, and professional development.

Patra Boots, who held that position, takes over as principal at Helen Haller while maintaining her director of technology responsibilities.

Donna Hudson, assistant principal at Sequim Middle School, will assist Boots at Haller on a part-time basis.

The district is looking at adding a part-time staffer at the middle school to help while Hudson is at Helen Haller.

Bill Bentley, superintendent of Sequim schools, said the move was made in part to lighten the load Boots has carried over several years handling curriculum, technology and professional development duties for the district, programs that some districts assign three staffers to handle.

"That is a very challenging expectation in Patra's job; every year the state has increased expectations in each of those areas," Bentley said. "I felt we needed a change to more reasonable (expectations)."

The superintendent said he hopes to make student performance a focus in coming months and that the administration change should help.

"I'm pleased ... and impressed with the work of all the administrators involved in this," Bentley said.



'Change is energizing'

Boots came to the Sequim School District in 1996 as assistant principal of Sequim High School. In 2000, she became director of instruction and technology and in 2005 was named principal at Sequim Community School.

She has taught at the middle school, high school and college levels.

Next year, as principal of Haller Elementary, she adds the elementary school level to her résume.

"Change is good; it's energizing," Boots said in a district press release. "Change keeps us going, keeps us innovating. I'm looking forward to working with children and parents."

Prior to coming to

Sequim, Riccobene taught all elementary grades except fifth grade in the Tumwater School District.

"I'm excited about this new, enormous challenge, and I'm looking forward to working with staff members from other buildings," he said in the district press release.

Riccobene said he plans to visit Helen Haller Elementary during lunch to interact with his 6-year-old son and students.

Hudson is a 21-year veteran of the school district, handling roles of teacher, counselor and administrator, all at the middle school level. She occasionally has substituted for Greywolf Elementary School Principal Patty Grenquist.

When presented with the chance to help Boots at Helen Haller Elementary, Hudson said she was excited.

"It will give me a chance to learn a new system, a new staff and a whole new group of kids."

Reach Michael Dashiell at miked@

sequimgazette.com.





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