Longtime area educator returns as interim principal in Joplin

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Aug. 3—Glenn Coltharp, who recently retired as president of Crowder College, has been named the interim principal at Royal Heights Elementary School in Joplin.

Coltharp has more than 40 years of experience in regional education, including at the elementary, secondary and postsecondary levels and in administration.

The announcement was made Wednesday by Superintendent Kerry Sachetta.

"We are very pleased Dr. Glenn Coltharp will be serving as our new interim principal at Royal Heights Elementary for the beginning of school," Sachetta said in a statement. "His expertise as an administrator and his familiarity with Joplin will serve our students and families very well as we get the school year started. Dr. Coltharp has had a long and distinguished career in education. In addition, he began his career as an elementary teacher and later as an elementary principal. His extensive experience will assist our faculty and staff at Royal Heights immediately."

In addition to his presidency at Crowder, Coltharp also was the vice president there and held various positions in the School of Education at Missouri Southern State University.

Prior to his career in higher education, he was a K-12 superintendent, assistant superintendent, middle school and elementary principal, and teacher of kindergarten and the second and fourth grades. He was also principal of the Missouri State School for the Severely Handicapped.

"It's an honor to rejoin the Joplin School District," Coltharp said in a statement. "Royal Heights, as well as Joplin Schools, has a long tradition of educational excellence, and I am excited to be part of the instructional program offered at Royal Heights. It's an exciting time to be an Eagle."

Coltharp holds a bachelor's degree in elementary education, master's degree in elementary school administration and specialist's degree in education and school administration, all from Pittsburg (Kansas) State University. He also holds a doctorate degree in school administration from Kansas State University.

Coltharp currently serves on the Missouri Department of Higher Education's Council of Chief Academic Officers, representing community colleges in the state. He also serves on the Missouri Advisory Board for Educator Preparation representing higher education and is working with the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education to strengthen teacher education in Missouri.

As interim principal, Coltharp succeeds Nathan Stewart while a search for a permanent principal is conducted.