Northwestern names new Howard Elementary principal

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Jul. 21—Northwestern High School's assistant principal is headed to Howard Elementary to be its next principal.

Jordan Nelson was approved by the Northwestern school board as Howard Elementary principal Tuesday.

He follows in the footsteps of Rhonda Lanie, who took the assistant principal position at West Lafayette Elementary School. Lanie lives near the school.

It's a return of sorts for Nelson, who once taught third grade at Howard Elementary School. He was there when the school celebrated its 100th anniversary.

"It's a school I absolutely love that has a huge history in the community," Nelson said after Tuesday night's board meeting.

Nelson handled student affairs, including attendance, discipline and student handbooks, while assistant principal at the high school. As principal, his attention will shift to staffing, academics and curriculum.

"I'm well prepared," Nelson said. "I've worn a lot of different hats."

Nelson taught and performed a variety of administrative roles at Pioneer Regional School Corporation and was assistant principal at Lewis Cass Elementary School.

While high school principal Tim Shoaff might not be ready for Nelson to leave the main campus, he's looking forward to working with him as a fellow principal.

"He's great with kids; he's really good with parents," Shoaff said. "He's able to make leadership decisions. He can make decisions on the fly."

The Northwestern school board also approved Camden Parkhurst to be the district's next director of finance.

Parkhurst takes over for Jamie Bolser, who accepted a job with Richmond Community Schools.

Parkhurst comes from Carroll schools where he was business manager, director of operations and athletic director.

Spencer Durham can be reached at 765-454-8598, by email at spencer.durham@kokomotribune.com or on Twitter at @Durham_KT.