Devin Smith Takes The Helm For North Summit High School
North Summit High School opens the year with a new principal. As an alumnus and long-time employee, he's not new to the school district.
North Summit High School Principal Devin Smith has worked in the district for 18 years. Previously, he was the district athletic director and for the past 11 years, assistant principal at the campus.
"Since I was a young kid, I've loved this school and I've been proud to be a student here and a teacher and now an administrator. And I'm proud to be part of this community. So, it's an honor for me to be the principal of this high school, we have a lot of great kids here, and I don't think I would have imagined myself, as a student, being the principal here, but I'm excited to be here.”
Smith said the COVID pandemic has challenged families, educators, and administrators in new ways. He is hopeful students will have a more typical experience this school year. Since school started last week, he said they had not had any positive COVID cases.
"We're making sure that everyone is cognizant of the learning gap of COVID and, luckily, we were all, for the most part, able to stay in school all of last year. We're proud of what we're doing here, and I know that our test scores reflect that we have a great staff. We want to make sure we keep that going, you know, we want our kids to hopefully do some things they weren't able to do last year as far as the social part of the school."
In addition to working on a new student citizenship recognition project, Smith said the school will focus on closing the COVID learning gap and paying close attention to mental health issues. Teachers and staff are participating in a new student tracking system, using federal COVID relief funds to help pay stipends for the extra contract time. Smith explainbed that:
"Each teacher or staff member identifies a student that they see that may be struggling academically or emotionally or may have something that they are aware of that the student is going through. And they're tracking that kid, visiting with him, or her, once or twice a week, and seeing what they can do to help assist them, whether it's with homework or just someone to talk to."
The 9th through 12th grade North Summit High School has about 335 students and 21 teachers. School started last week, and they have one CTE teaching position yet to fill.