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Long-time teacher, principal Chris Clark takes job with alma mater

Last updated: June 24. 2014 7:07PM - 683 Views
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Madison-Plains High School Principal Chris Clark poses for a picture with his wife Barb, left, and two daughters Morgan and Shelby, after accepting the position of superintendent at Black River Local School District in Ashland County on June 17. Clark is a 1984 graduate.
Madison-Plains High School Principal Chris Clark poses for a picture with his wife Barb, left, and two daughters Morgan and Shelby, after accepting the position of superintendent at Black River Local School District in Ashland County on June 17. Clark is a 1984 graduate.
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A local school administrator is going home.


Chris Clark, principal of Madison-Plains High School, has resigned his position to take a superintendent’s position in Black River Schools in Ashland County.


Clark, an ’84 alumnus of Black River, will take on the role beginning July 1. Area media outlets said he was hired during a special meeting of the Black River Board of Education on June 17.


He is currently wrapping up his duties at Madison-Plains High School. Clark is seeing through a scheduling program for the coming school year, which he initiated. He wants to make sure it’s intact and operable before he heads north, he said.


Clark is moving to a school district he describes as comparable in size and composition to Madison-Plains.


“The district is all in one complex like Madison-Plains,” Clark said. “Finances are almost the same, and their operation is fairly the same.”


Clark said financial stability “appears to be an issue, having some stability, some direction.”


“I’ve always been up to a challenge,” Clark said, citing some excitement and some nervousness at taking on superintendent’s role.


Clark said he has had his superintendent certificate for some time, but had set geographic parameters for taking the next step up.


That came when some hometown friends called him and told him of the resignation of Black River’s superintendent, Janice Wycoff. Clark still owns a farm in the area despite being away for 26 years.


In terms of salary, Clark will be paid $95,000 to take the job in Black River, said Connie Hange, Black River treasurer.


She sat in the final interviews and described Clark as “a no-nonsense kinda guy, which it what we need right now. I’m looking forward to his coming.”


Hange felt that since Clark is an alumnus of Black River, he will have the best interest of the district at heart.


“And the students will reap the benefit of that,” Hange said. She also said between phone calls and emails she and Clark have been communicating.


Clark began his teaching career at Madison-Plains in 1988 as agriculture education instructor. When he started, agricultural education had 28 students. It has since grown to need three full-time teachers.


Clark said he has been grateful for the opportunity to grow as an education professional at Madison-Plains. He became principal in 2004.


Kelly Cooley, president of the Madison-Plains Board of Education, could not be reached Tuesday for additional information regarding Clark’s departure and the BOE’s plans for his replacement.


News of Clark’s relocation comes weeks after the announcement that Madison-Plain Superintendent Bernie Hall is resigning Aug. 1


Dean Shipley can be reached at (740) 852- 1617 or via Twitter @DeanAShipley.


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