Wednesday, November 14 , 2018, 8:31 pm | Fair 52º


Franklin, McKinley Schools Get New Principals

Both administrators are South Coast natives and fluent in Spanish.

Two of the Santa Barbara School District‘s most disadvantaged elementary schools will start next school year with new principals, both of them South Coast natives.

Franklin School, 1111 E. Mason St. on the Lower Eastside, will be led by Casie Killgore, a San Marcos High graduate and former interim principal of Adams School. Killgore will replace Carole Nevarez, who will begin the new year as an assistant principal at La Colina Junior High.

McKinley School, 350 Loma Alta Drive on the Mesa, will be led by Emilio Handall, a Carpinteria High graduate and currently a principal in the Oxnard school district. Handall will replace Juanita Carney, who is retiring.

Both new principals are fluent in Spanish, and will be paid within the district’s salary range for elementary principals: between $98,428 and $110,633.

The schools, which both have a student population that is about 95 percent Latino, enroll the highest proportion of students who are considered low-income, and the highest proportion of students who are considered English learners, in the 10-school elementary district. Franklin and McKinley, along with Harding School on the Westside, are the district’s only elementary schools to be labeled as in need of improvement by the federal government under the No Child Left Behind Act. This status is known in education lingo as “Program Improvement.”

Killgore earned a bachelor’s degree at the College of Notre Dame in Baltimore. She completed graduate work at California State University-Northridge and Azusa Pacific University, where she earned a master’s in education administration. She started teaching at Cleveland School in 2002. In 2007, she served as the interim principal at Adams.

During the 2007-08 school year, she served as assistant principal at Peabody Charter School and developed a youth mariachi group while there.

“I look forward to the opportunity to help students excel and be ready for the world,” she said in a statement Thursday. “I am especially excited to expand the youth mariachi group to Franklin students.”

Handall began his career nine years ago as a sixth-grade teacher. After four years in the classroom, he began his administrative career. During his tenure as an assistant principal at Blackstock Junior High in the Hueneme School District, the disadvantaged school raised its test scores to the point that it exited Program Improvement status — a rare feat in California.

Handall attended Santa Barbara City College. He has a B.A. degree from UCLA and a master’s degree in education from the University of La Verne. He also has a master of arts degree in educational leadership and an educational administrative credential from Azusa Pacific.

“I want to build on McKinley’s nurturing environment and work closely with parents and staff to enhance our students’ academic achievement and personal growth,” he said in a statement.

Noozhawk staff writer Rob Kuznia can be reached at [email protected]

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