McCullough's exit a huge loss
October 3, 2008 · Updated 12:23 AM
Last week's Valley Record carried the headline about Dr. Rich McCullough, Snoqualmie Valley Public Schools superintendent, leaving at the end of this year. Right below the photo of Dr. McCullough was a story about the school district improving its WASL scores. The story below seemed fitting based on the announcement.
This is the second loss of a community leader in as many months with Don Isley retiring from the city of Snoqualmie. But the entire Valley will feel the loss next year of Dr. McCullough as he moves on to other things in his life. Rich, as many people call him, has taken a district that was average at best and transformed it, through many great people in the district, to one of the best in the state, if not the country. He is quick to point out great things happening in the schools and can identify many students by name.
The first question out of his mouth is typically about your children and what they may be doing. He is a consummate negotiator who can dive into discord and come out with a resolution.
Rich has been a great leader for our growing district and now we face the task of replacing him for the next phase of our future. The Snoqualmie Valley School District is poised on great things with new schools being built, new athletic facilities and a growing student population. The school board will need to look for someone with progressive ideas and a willingness to become as integral a part of the community as Rich has been. We need someone whom all personnel in the district trust with their future and will negotiate at contract time for win-win scenarios, and also someone who is firm when discipline is necessary. The superintendent, the school board are the gatekeepers of our tax dollars and Snoqualmie Valley residents are highly informed when it comes to how their taxes are spent.
I also urge the school board to keep us informed about the progress in the search. We all have a vested interest in Rich's replacement and it is important that we feel secure in your selection.
For those of us who know Rich, this will be a special year. If you see him at an event, say "Hi," and let him know how much we have appreciated his guidance of our school district.