A new face will grace the halls of Bowling Green Junior High School in the 2010-11 school year.

The BGJHS Site-Based Decision-Making Council voted Monday to hire Adam Cross as principal, a position left vacant since March 1 by former Principal Penny Masden.

Cross is currently principal of Wayland Alexander Elementary School in Ohio County.

“The BGJHS SBDM is very pleased to have chosen Adam Cross by unanimous vote (Monday) afternoon as the next Bowling Green Junior High School principal,” said Larry Scott, head of the SBDM’s principal selection committee. “This was a long and detailed search as we sought to find the best candidate for the position.”

Interim Principal Kenneth Skea has been in place since Masden’s departure. Cross will begin his duties July 1.

“I was stunned more than anything,” Cross said of his selection. “I have mixed emotions because we have a great thing going on here at Wayland … it was difficult, but my main goal is to make a positive difference in kids, and I feel we can get some great things accomplished here.”

Cross, a former employee of Warren County Public Schools, taught language arts and social studies at Warren East High School from 2001-03 and seventh- and eighth-grade social studies at Warren East Middle School from 2003-06 before moving to Ohio County Schools. Cross also worked with the cross country and track programs at the junior high and Bowling Green High School, where he was an administrative assistant for a year.

Cross, a graduate of Allen County-Scottsville High School and Western Kentucky University, is currently working on his doctorate degree with an emphasis in P-12 educational leadership, at WKU.

He said Bowling Green Independent Schools Superintendent Joe Tinius’ leadership is one of the reasons he applied for the job.

“I love Bowling Green as a city, and I’ve always been a Purple, and it’s always been my dream to get back to Bowling Green city schools,” he said.

Scott said Cross’ experience at the elementary, middle and high school levels will serve the junior high school well as the bridging institution between the elementary schools and Bowling Green High School. As principal of Wayland Elementary, Cross has overseen the raising of test scores for the school while increasing the teamwork within the school, Scott said.

Council members weren’t the only ones impressed with Cross’ resume as an educator. Tinius said Cross brings to the table a full spectrum of experience and a proven record of success. In meeting with Cross and reviewing his application, Tinius said it was apparent Cross is student-focused.

“I was impressed with the success that has occurred at Wayland Elementary in Ohio County under his leadership,” Tinius said. “He spoke about the importance of a strong culture in a school … and how vitally important it is to be visible during the school day, interacting with students and teachers. I think he brings a lot of positive qualities.”

Tinius said 27 people started the application process and 21 completed the preliminary process who Tinius then considered before conducting interviews of his own. He said while all 21 candidates were available to the council to interview, the council asked for a range of five to seven candidates.

The council started closed-session meetings April 19 to interview and discuss the potential candidates for principal. The meetings began after the council took a week to collect input from students, staff, teachers and parents as to what they wanted in a principal and discussed those results.

The council appreciates the guidance and input derived from all the stakeholders, Scott said. He said the information gained from questionnaires and the many conversations and e-mails helped lead the council to Monday’s decision.

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