After Bob Boyle resigned at the end of the semester, curriculum director Beth Lougee became interim superintendent. She has signed a year and a half contract to finish out this year, and continue on next year as the superintendent. We asked her some questions about how the start of her job has gone, and a little about her and her experiences.
Current: How long have you been in the school district, and what have your roles been?
Lougee: I’m going going on my second year. I was hired as the director of curriculum assessment and professional development.
Current: Why did you apply for the superintendent job?
Lougee: For the year and a half that I had been here I had worked closely with Mr. Boyle, obviously he was my boss, my superintendent, but there was a lot of knowledge and information I gained from him. I felt because I had my superintendent’s endorsement, and that was always an avenue I was working towards. I just saw the opportunity and thought I could step in and help the transition be a little smoother with having the knowledge of being here for a year and a half.
Current: Tell us about your experiences. Where have you previously worked?
Lougee: I have worked in Wyoming for the majority of my life. That’s where I was born and raised. The majority of my teaching experience, counseling (was a school counselor) and administration work was in Wyoming. My last 4 years I was in New Mexico, I was hired down there by the same superintendent I worked for in Wyoming. I was a high school principal down there. Prior to that I was a K12 principal in Wyoming. I am in the process of finishing up my doctorate in Ed-leadership. In 2004-2006 me and my husband taught in Haines high school. We always knew we wanted to come back to the southeast islands, so when the position opened I applied, and it worked out.
Current: What is your vision for Ketchikan High school and other schools in our district?
Lougee: My Vision has always been students first. Ultimately the vision is providing education for each student based on their individual needs. That’s a big prescription, but from the day I stepped into the classroom as a special eds teacher, or whether I was counseling, teaching, and now being the superintendent, I always have made the comment that we need to keep our eyes on the prize, the students.
Current: What other things do you want to address within our school?
Lougee: I feel that I am someone who can help rebuild the trust, and help put those plans in place. Throughout my whole career I have been a person who kind of likes to think outside the box, and watch it all come together.
Current: What things do you like about our high school?
Lougee: Since day one when I walked in here, what is offered on the academic side and the vocational side I think is very impressive. The extra curricular activities that ketchikan puts together and offers students is outstanding. Even at times when there is criticism of it, if you are looking at the whole experience that a student can be offered, I think the school offers a lot.
Current: What thing do you like about Ketchikan and our community?
Lougee: I think it is outstanding. Whether it’s the town, the borough, the city, I think it’s a beautiful place to live. I think the people are nice and friendly, I think it has a lot to offer for being a community on an island. The schools offer a lot, I don’t get the feel that I am not down south like other people talk about. I haven’t had the feeling that I am stuck on an island, everything is offered. Our schools offer more than many schools down in the lower 48.