Cassia Schools Hire Superintendent of Schools
A weighty decision combined with hours of phone calls, conversations, meetings and research, according to Board member Bruce Thompson led the Cassia County School Board to offer the position of superintendent of schools to Dr. James Shank.
The months long process culminated in the decision at a special meeting of the Board on Monday evening, April 2nd. Dr. Shank was among three finalists the Board formally interviewed after a search and selection process facilitated by the Idaho School Boards Association.
Board member Jeff Rasmussen hopes the community will take the time to get to know Dr. Shank and recognize the traits that can effectively guide the school district.
Dr. Shank comes to Cassia by way of Coupeville, Washington where he has been the superintendent of schools for five years. He will officially take the top schools job July 1, 2018. He is married to Sally Shank and they have 6 children, one of which will be senior next year. He began his professional career as a para-educator. His interest is “education DNA”, he says as he comes from a family of educators.
He obtained his undergraduate degree at BYU-Provo in Special Education, his Master’s degree from BYU-Provo and his Ed Specialist and Doctorate degrees from Idaho State University. A native of Longview, Washington, he has spent his professional career in the Mountain West and is looking forward to moving closer to family.
Board member Heber Loughmiller spoke to Dr. Shank’s qualifications, body of work, interview and skill set as the positives he will bring to the district and community. Dr. Shank says that he will be the “biggest student of the school district next year as there is a lot of learning to take place as he makes the fit.” He believes that building relationships with stakeholders is key to the learning process and looks forward to meeting and talking with people in the community. He also touched on the critical nature of student learning saying “that’s why we are here.”
Cassia School district welcomes Dr. Shank and looks forward to the coming transition. In his own words, “I am excited about coming back to Idaho.”
He will replace retiring superintendent Gaylen Smyer.