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Linn Mar Officials Address Parent Concerns

MARION, IA (CBS2/FOX28) Both parents and School Board Members in the Linn-Mar Community School District had their voices heart over the Districts decision to shuffle three popular elementary school principals for next year.

Parents first learned of the rotation in a letter sent home just a few days before school let out, leaving many confused and searching for answers.

Before the meeting, parents say they wanted an explanation and reason to get behind the decision to move their principals, or the get the moves undone.

Ive heard it said that a principal is not the school, said Wilkins Elementary School PTO President Ellen Teller. Well I have to tell you the principal at Wilkins Elementary is Wilkins. On a bigger scale, at Linn-Mar our principals are Linn-Mar to us.

One of the things that's been expressed at least publicly was that this was part of a normal growth plan. From a letter from the principal at Bowman, this change was very unexpected to him, said another Linn-Mar parent.

A week ago, thats all parents thought theyd get, a chance to air their concerns. But last week, the board added the principal swap to their agenda, meaning those concerns were addressed by Superintendent Dr. Katie Mulholland.

For some parents and students, these changes seemed unnecessary and I understand that, said Dr. Mulholland.

She said she knows that parents think their principals are great, and that they were moved so that they could make an already high-performing system better.

The Board backed her up, pointing out that they'd done their research, admitted the timing wasn't perfect, but that they stand behind moving three of Linn-Mars principals.

 Job rotation is a good thing, said Board Member Todd Hutchenson. It can just be difficult to explain or express.

 I'm excited for all three schools. Kids and families, said Board Member Tim Isenburg. Each of these leaders, John, Tina and Marilee have built a great foundation and each will be able to build upon those foundations at their new school.

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