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Day: September 3, 2013

New Forest Ridge principal started in Alaskan basement

 

Marya Kalugin is the new principal at Keizer’s Forest Ridge Elementary School. Kalugin’s teaching career began in Alaska where other instructors were flown in by helicopter. (KEIZERTIMES/Eric A. Howald)
Marya Kalugin is the new principal at Keizer’s Forest Ridge Elementary School. Kalugin’s teaching career began in Alaska where other instructors were flown in by helicopter. (KEIZERTIMES/Eric A. Howald)

By ERIC A. HOWALD
Of the Keizertimes

New Forest Ridge Elementary School principal Marya Kalugin’s teaching career started out in the basement of a three-story building in Alaska.

“Teachers would come in by helicopter and guide my lessons from point to point. I loved that I was there making a difference,” Kalugin said.

Now in her first assignment as a school principal, Kalugin will be the one guiding lessons for the other teachers, and she lives in Gervais meaning helicopter rides won’t be necessary.

Kalugin takes the reins from Gary Etchemendy, who led the school for nine years and was recently reassigned to Englewood Elementary School. Kalugin taught at Swegle Elementary School and then served as an English language acquisition specialist for the Salem-Keizer School District before taking over at Forest Ridge. She is fluent in Russian and English.

With just a few weeks on the job, she’s been overwhelmed with the community involvement she’s inheriting.

“It’s so unique, and the parent involvement is awesome. I haven’t seen support like this in the past, it’s something I never even dreamed of,” she said.


To read the complete article and other news from around the Keizer area, pick up a copy of the August 30 print edition of Keizertimes, available at stores all around the area. To subscribe to the print edition for just $25 a year, click on the ‘Subscribe Today’ link at the top of the page, call 503-390-1051 or visit our office at 142 Chemawa Road North in Keizer.

‘Taking time to connect with students can remind you that it’s all going to be okay’

Tara Bainbridge is the new principal at Clear Lake Elementary School. It’s her first posting at an elementary school. (KEIZERTIMES/Eric A. Howald)
Tara Bainbridge is the new principal at Clear Lake Elementary School. It’s her first posting at an elementary school. (KEIZERTIMES/Eric A. Howald)

 

By ERIC A. HOWALD
Of the Keizertimes

The daily life of a principal can get more than hectic at times. Between meeting with staff, phone calls from parents and an endless roll of red tape, it’s easy to lose sight of the big picture.

When that happens, Tara Baldridge, the new principal at Clear Lake Elementary School, finds a way to connect with her students; it might mean jumping rope with them, sitting beside them as they learn or as simple as pulling out a thank you note from a prior student.

“Deadlines and phone calls and everything else is important, but they’re not as important as a human being and not as important as our children,” Baldridge said. “Taking time to connect with the students can remind you it’s all going to be okay.”


To read the complete article and other news from around the Keizer area, pick up a copy of the August 30 print edition of Keizertimes, available at stores all around the area. To subscribe to the print edition for just $25 a year, click on the ‘Subscribe Today’ link at the top of the page, call 503-390-1051 or visit our office at 142 Chemawa Road North in Keizer.