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East County Wednesday, Jul. 1, 2009 6 years ago

Community grills Ranch principal finalists

by: Pam McTeer News Editor

LAKEWOOD RANCH  — The three finalists for the Lakewood Ranch High School Principal position possibly met their toughest critics during a community forum June 30 at Lakewood Ranch High School.

The contenders — current Lakewood Ranch Assistant Principal Don Sauer, current Manatee High School Assistant Principal Linda Nesselhauf and Melanie Metz, an assistant principal in New York — introduced themselves to staff and parents before presenting their top priorities and strategies as administrators and fielding questions from them in separate forums.

Parents probed finalists about everything from improving the school’s image and safety on campus to their opinions about fine arts programs.

“We need somebody who is going to enforce the rules fairly,” said Kathy Stasiowski, whose son, Ryan, is going into the 10th grade at Lakewood. “We would prefer somebody who is very familiar with Lakewood Ranch High School — somebody who knows what’s going on here.”

Robin Draper, who attended the meeting although her two children have already graduated, emphasized that the new principal should make safety a top priority.

“I think the safety and security of the school and the curriculum are most important,” she said.

Community and Lakewood staff members who attended the forum provided feedback and comments about each candidate to the school district. Officials will use the information gathered there in deciding on who will best serve Lakewood Ranch High School.

The finalists will now go on to interviews with Superintendent Tim McGonegal and Assistant Superintendent of Curriculum and Instruction Lynette Edwards.

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