Valley High School Principal Search Update

Update: Dec. 18

The West Des Moines School District completed a stakeholder survey, which resulted in over 500 total responses from students, teachers, support staff, parents, community members, administrators, and alumni. The results conveyed clear desired qualifications for the new Valley High School Principal position, which included:

  • a commitment to student, staff, and community relationships.
  • an ability to promote programs that will result in college, career, and citizenship ready students.
  • experience promoting positive student behavior, which enhances school pride.
  • strong leadership skills in previous positions.
    experience and skills developing equitable educational opportunities for all students.
  • effective written and verbal communicator.

Based on application materials, references, and screening interviews the following finalists have been named who best fit the desired qualifications for the position:

David Maxwell

David has served as the Valley High School Associate Principal for the last 13 years. Prior to that, he served as a Dean of Students at Hoover High School in Des Moines, IA. David has taken a lead at Valley High School on equity work and is a champion for building the high school culture. He was honored in 2011 with the Mary McLeod Bethune Educator of the Year award. He is also engaged with the community, his church, and with the Drake Relays serving as a Clerk of Course. He was awarded the Co-Citizen of the Year honor in 2017 for his efforts around equity and inclusion.

Karl Dearie

Karl has extensive experience in both principal and central office roles. He served as the Coast Union Assistant Superintendent and high school principal in Cambria, CA from 2005-2013. As the high school principal, the school received the California Distinguished School Award two different times and was named by the U.S. News and World Report as a Silver Medal School on three occasions. In 2008, he received the Association of California School Administrators Region XIII “Leadership Matters” Award in recognition of his accomplishments as the school leader. Prior to that, he served as the Armstrong-Ringstead High School Principal from 2002-2004 and Associate Principal of Paso Robles School (CA) from 1992-2002. He currently serves as the North Union Elementary Principal in Armstrong, IA.

These finalists will be invited for formal interviews at Valley High School on Tuesday, Jan. 9th. Various district and community stakeholders wiwill be included in the formal interview process to provide the superintendent feedback about the candidate’s qualifications and fit for the position.

Update: Dec. 13

The West Des Moines Community Schools continues to search for a new principal of Valley High School. Current principal Tim Miller will retire at the end of the 2017-18 school year. Grundmeyer Leader Search presented a slate of 22 candidates to the district superintendency on Wednesday, Dec. 6. After reviewing all of the data, superintendency chose six candidates for screening interviews on Dec. 13.

The final interviews are set for Jan. 9, 2018. Staff, students, parents, administrators, and the superintendency will be involved in the interview process on Jan. 9.