Augustadt’s departure triggers administrative shuffle in schools

Sean C. Morgan

Of The New Era

With the departure of one administrator, Sweet Home School District will shuffle some front offices next school year and welcome a Sweet Home High School graduate back to the community.

Leaving is Terry Augustadt, known widely as “Mr. A,” vice principal at Sweet Home Junior High after serving as principal at Hawthorne School.

Joining the administration is Nate Tyler as athletic director and assistant principal at Sweet Home High School. Mark Looney will move from SHHS athletic director and assistant principal to vice principal and athletic director at SHJH.

Todd Barrett and Josh Dargis will swap positions, Barrett becoming principal at Oak Heights Elementary while Dargis will be principal at Holley and district Title I coordinator.

“As we look forward to the 2019-20 school year, it is with happiness and sadness that I share that Junior High Assistant Principal Terry Augustadt has accepted a position as Marcola Elementary principal,” said Supt. Tom Yahraes. “The leadership position allows Terry to be closer to his home while affording him the ability to continue to inspire elementary students. It is the next chapter in his professional life, and it gets him closer to home. The kids love his passion, his humor. His drive and love of students will be missed.”

Augustadt, who lives in the Springfield area, spent 11 years in Sweet Home, working as a counselor, principal, assistant principal and athletic director at Crawfordsville, Holley, Hawthorne and the Junior High.

“I want you to know how truly blessed I have been by the incredible relationships I’ve built with the countless number of students, staff and parents through the years,” Augustadt said in his resignation letter. “Sweet Home is a great community, and I will be sory to leave this supportive environment.

“I have witnessed firsthand the work of the amazing Sweet Home staff. It goes without saying that these incredible people rise to the daily challenge to provide the best possible education for our kids.”

Coming into the district is Tyler, who is current principal at Madras Alternative School, Yahraes said. He had been a science teacher and assistant principal at Madras High School. He is studying for his doctorate in education leadership at the University of Oregon.

“Nate is an alumnus of Sweet Home High School returning to his home town to serve students and raise his family,” Yahraes said. “Nate comes with seven years of administrative experience. I am excited about Nate’s addition to the high school leadership team. He knows Sweet Home and brings with him outside experiences of effective programs and systems to help Sweet Home High School’s continuous pursuit to improve its academic and athletic programs for our students.”

Internally, the district offers strengths-based leadership, professional growth and cross-training opportunities for administrators, Yahraes said, and that drives the three internal transfers in leadership.

At the junior high, Looney will bring student supervision and management skills, organizational and crisis response experience and skills, Yahraes said, as well as his strong math and sciences background, which will complement the professional learning communities instructional teams at the junior high.

“Mark’s seven years of high school leadership experience will help junior high school students understand the social, academic, behavioral and athletic skills and expectations they will encounter in high school,” Yahraes said.

He also will help guide the school while it is under construction, Yahraes said. That is not a time for on-the-job training.

At Holley, Dargis will bring extensive training in professional learning communities and response to intervention programs, Yahraes said. Dargis has eight years of administrative experience, five at the junior high as vice principal and three as principal at Oak Heights.

Dargis will gain experience in Title I and bring a strong math background to it, Yahraes said. The Title I program has focused on reading.

“Josh will bring his passion and positivity to Holley, and students will learn he is king of kickball and all activities on the playground, while demanding the best in citizenship and academics,” Yahraes said.

Barrett will take on a large ele-mentary school and preside over specialized elementary behavior programs, which are housed at Oak Heights, Yahraes said. He brings four years of elementary principal experience along with extensive PLC and RTI work and Title I experience at the district level.

“This combination of skills, experience and data-driven decision-making will help lead and contribute to Oak Heights professional learning communities,” Yahraes said. “Todd is a student of the growth mindset. He is serious about continuous academic improvement, and his humor, gregarious nature, heart and love of seeing students build their character and self-esteem are infectious.”

Yahraes said he looks forward to the changes next year: “Like with any organization, whether in education or not, change is the only thing that is constant. Change offers the opportunity to grow, create and inspire.”