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May 22

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Larissa Chinwah
Communications & Public Affairs Specialist

MPS assigns new principals at five schools   

MINNEAPOLIS - Dr. Bernadeia Johnson, superintendent of Minneapolis Public Schools (MPS), has announced principal assignments for the 2013-2014 school year. The roster includes new principals at five schools: Folwell School, Performing Arts Magnet; Lake Harriet Community School; Lyndale Community School; Sanford Middle School; and Stadium View Freedom School. 

Ronald Salazar has been named principal at Folwell School, Performing Arts Magnet. Salazar succeeds Sharon Engel, who is retiring. In addition to his extensive experience leading schools in the U.S., Salazar has also held administrative positions at schools in Costa Rica, Kazakhstan, Mexico and Venezuela. Most recently, Salazar served as the instructional leader at Minnesota Transitions Charter School where he oversaw curriculum, improved the school’s culture and improved test scores. Salazar holds a doctorate in educational policy and administration from the University of Minnesota. 

Aaron Drevlow will replace Mary Rynchek, who is retiring, as principal at Lake Harriet Community School. Throughout his career, Drevlow has held positions in all areas of education including assessment coordinator, special education administrator, arts director and coach at school districts in Minnesota. Drevlow has been assistant principal at Red Pony Student Center in Stillwater Area Public Schools since 2008. Prior to that role, Drevlow was a tenured language arts teacher in the South St. Paul school district. A dedicated athlete and coach, Drevlow has completed the Wisconsin Ironman and led expeditions to Mount McKinley, Alaska; Pico De Orizaba, Mexico; and Huascaran Sur, Peru. Drevlow earned his superintendent licensure from St. Mary’s University of Minnesota in 2011. 

Andree James will become principal of Lyndale Community School beginning the 2013-2014 school year. James has served as interim principal at Lyndale since January when Ossie Brooks-James retired. James has been employed by Minneapolis Public Schools for over 20 years. In the past, she has played a key administrative role in other schools, such as serving as principal for Bethune and assistant principal for Marcy Open. James began her career at MPS as an elementary teacher for Park View Montessori and has served as the assistant principal at Lyndale for the past two and a half years. James earned her Master of Arts degree in education at the University of St. Thomas and her Bachelor of Arts degree at Drake University.

Emily Lilja Palmer will take on the principal position at Sanford Middle School, replacing Meredith Davis, who is retiring. Currently an assistant principal at Richfield Middle School, Palmer provides instructional leadership for the gifted and talented, language arts and science and exploratory departments. She has taught every secondary grade from sixth through 12th and is a National Board Certified teacher. Palmer began her administrative career in MPS as an assistant principal intern at Anthony Middle School before serving as the commercial and fine arts small learning community program coordinator at Patrick Henry High School. She earned her Doctor of Education in educational administration from the University of Minnesota and her administrative licensure from Saint Mary’s University.

Carol Markham-Cousins has been named principal at Stadium View Freedom School, located in the Hennepin County Juvenile Detention Center. Markham-Cousins, who has served in administrative positions within MPS for 14 years, replaces a retiring Larry Lucio. Markham-Cousins is a passionate advocate for students and families. She brings her proven track record in helping to turn schools around, working effectively to strengthen the academic outcomes of students. Markham-Cousins earned a Master of Arts degree in special education from St. Cloud State University and a Bachelor of Arts degree in education from the University of Minnesota.

MPS is in the process of filling principal positions at Washburn High School and Green Central Community School.

2013-14 New Principal Assignments