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For junior high principal
NP fills position without posting opening

by Alan McArthur
Landmark reporter

The fact North Platte has announced the hiring of new principals is not surprising, but what has turned some heads within the district is the process school officials took in doing so, as at least one of the spots was filled without the position ever being posted.

North Platte has announced the hiring of a new high school principal to replace retiring Principal Ron Green. The board of education hired current North Platte junior high principal Roger Giger for the position.

To replace Giger at the North Platte Junior High School, former North Platte teacher Karl Matt was hired.

Green is retiring at the end of this school year and Giger will take over the high school principal position at the beginning of August. Matt will take over the junior high position at the same time.

Once Giger was selected to replace Green, it meant there was an opening for the junior high principal position. A replacement was quickly found when the district asked Matt without posting or advertising the junior high opening.

Francis Moran, North Platte superintendent, said that Matt had applied for the high school principal position, but was interviewed for the junior high position instead. Someone from the district called Matt and asked if he would be interested in the position.

“We didn't advertise the job,” said Moran. “There was no need to open it.”

According to the school board's policies posted on the district’s website, “All vacancies should be posted for a minimum of 10 school days before the Superintendent may recommend a qualified applicant to the Board for employment.”

However, the district's regulations do not include any mention of being required to post notice of an opening.

“The difference between a policy and a regulation is the difference between should and must,” said Moran. “It simply means a district should advertise a job.”

According to Moran, the district receives its policies from their insurance company Missouri United School Insurance Council, MUSIC. Regulations are actually adopted by a district's board of education.

Moran said there was no requirement to post the job because the board liked Matt's application.
“Ordinarily we would advertise a job, but in this situation we had a qualified candidate and felt comfortable with him so we didn't feel a need to,” said Moran. “It is usually a good practice, but in certain circumstances there is no need to.”

Matt formerly worked for the North Platte district for five years as a math teacher and boys basketball coach. He has been at the Excelsior Springs School District for one year as a math teacher and basketball coach before returning to the North Platte district.

Upon his return to North Platte, he will become head coach of the Lady Panthers high school girls team.

According to Moran, there were 30 applications submitted for the high school principal position, however no one was interviewed.

“Roger has been here 11 years as an administrator,” said Moran. “Knowing a candidate helps in the selection.”

Once Giger was selected to replace Green, it meant there was an opening for the junior high principal position. A replacement was quickly found when the district asked Matt.

“We didn't advertise the job,” said Moran. “There was no need to open it.”

There were no applications received by the district for the junior high position.

“It's great when you can pick someone you know to fill a position,” said Moran. “I am very confident it will make the transition very smooth.”

Giger has been in the district for 27 years and became the district's athletic director in 1989. He has been the Junior High principal since 1997. Giger also received his education specialist degree in superintendency from Northwest Missouri State University in 2004.

Matt is a 1993 graduate of Platte County R-3 High School and received his bachelor's degree from Missouri State University in 1998. He received a master’s degree in school leadership from Baker University in 2006.


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