Baker takes helm at C’ville

A familiar face will be taking the helm of Cridersville Elementary School beginning in August.

Misty Baker, who currently teaches second grade there, was named the new principal of the school Tuesday during a meeting of the Wapakoneta City Schools Board of Education.

“We feel awfully happy to have Misty join our administrative team,” Superintendent Keith Horner said. “She did a good job preparing herself for this experience.”

He said she knows the school and the district and has been working toward this goal.

“We knew we liked her from the beginning and did a search outside the

district as well with her as a measuring stick and no one really measured up to her,” Horner said. “She was very strong.”

In preparing for the role, she has trained under retiring Cridersville Principal Dave Tester for approximately three years.

“I always wanted to do this,” Baker said of becoming first a teacher and then an elementary school principal.

She finished her license in 2010 and set a goal to become an administrator in the next five years.

“Teaching has a direct impact on students, while an administrator has more of an impact on the district and staff as a whole,” Baker said.

She received a three-year contract beginning Aug. 1 at a salary of approximately $67,875. The contract is for 213 days per year at step zero on the salary schedule with a master’s degree plus 27 hours. Salary and benefits are as outlined in the administrative salary schedule.

In her eighth year with the district, Baker spent her first year out of school substitute teaching and then started in 2005 teaching at Centennial Elementary School, since then she has been teaching at Cridersville, where she also did her student teaching and student observation.

The graduate of Wright State University and Bowling Green State University has taught pre-first and second grade.

The 34-year-old lives in Elida with her husband, Dan, daughter, Kaia, 4, and son, Braden, 1.

Admittedly, Baker said she knows she has big shoes to fill in replacing Tester, but she feels that she has learned so much from her mentor and hopes that someday she can fill that same role for someone else.

“You can be told how to do something, but having the experience doing it first-hand makes a difference,” said Baker, who would fill in for Tester when he was out of the building.

Nearly unable to contain her excitement about the new position, Baker said it still feels surreal.

“I am truly blessed,” Baker said.

She said she can’t wait to get started and develop relationships with the students, parents, staff and community.

“I still want to be visible through the building,” Baker said. “I am excited to create a hands-on experience for the students and staff. I have gained great respect for all sides of education.

“A major role of an administrator is dealing with students, parents, staff and the community,” she said. “I want everyone to feel comfortable sharing ideas with me.”

The new principal said anyone with any suggestions is always welcome to give her feedback.