Derek Smith tapped to lead Jackson Heights middle and high school
Derek Smith, recently hired as the new middle and high school principal in the Jackson Heights district starting in the next school term, says his background in the U.S. Air Force is key to his successes in the field of education.
Smith, currently a science teacher at Royal Valley High School, will join the district as the new middle and high school administrator starting with the 2022-23 school year after six years as a science teacher at RVHS and three other schools in eastern Kansas.
Prior to that, Smith served for 12 years in the Air Force as a basic military training instructor and a firefighter, which he said led into a career as a leader in both fields “in some of the harshest environments ranging from Iraq war zones to leading fellow instructors in basic training,” according to his resume and application packet.
“My military supervision experience has included supervising a range of individuals,” Smith said in his application packet. “I have been responsible for budget and supply as well as personnel decisions. The stresses placed on an administrator were compounded in the military atmosphere.”
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