Vienna High School superintendent Joshua W. Stafford has finalized plans with the board of education in restructuring the administrative team at the school. Stafford is serving as the superintendent/principal and has named two individuals to serve as deans administering instruction and students.
Both dean positions were unanimously approved by the board of education on Thursday evening, June 18, during their regular board meeting.
Veteran teacher John Giffin has been named the Dean of Students. Mr. Giffin has been serving in the Vienna district as a science teacher, scholar bowl sponsor, and in various other roles over the last 13 years. Mr. Giffin commented, “I enjoy my time in the classroom and look forward to this new role in which I will be able to serve our students in the dean position for part of my day while maintaining my presence in the classroom as a teacher.” Giffin will be responsible for student discipline, activities, and supervision. He earned his bachelor’s and master’s degree at Southern Illinois University-Carbondale. He is also a nationally board certified teacher, which is a distinction that is held by only 3% of instructors.
Johnson County native Kathy Anderson has been named the Dean of Instruction. Mrs. Anderson has served as an administrator in two Vienna feeder grade school districts and brings 33 years of educational experience to the high school. Mrs. Anderson shared, “Serving at Vienna High School will be a great opportunity and challenge for me. I am excited to work with the staff to ensure that our students are receiving the best possible instruction that we can provide. Great teachers are the magic to ensuring successful students and I want do everything that I can so that our teachers continue to be great!” Anderson will be responsible for staff evaluations, curriculum, and professional development. She completed her bachelor’s degree and master’s degree in educational leadership and administration at Southern Illinois University-Carbondale. She has not only served as a school administrator for 14 years, but also was the School Improvement Coordinator for the Regional Office of Education which allowed her to assist schools across southern Illinois.
Superintendent Stafford commented, “Being able to add Mrs. Anderson and Mr. Giffin to our administrative team not only enhances the opportunities that we can provide to students and staff, but also makes our school a better a place for everyone to grow and learn. I could not be more excited than to have the leadership of these two individuals serving on the Vienna team! Their passion for education has been proven by each of their track records of success.”
The administrative team at the high school will continue to be represented by Athletic Director David Hill who has served the district for 19 years as a teacher, coach, and AD. Mr. Hill expressed his thoughts, “Transition is always an opportunity for improvement. I look forward to working closely with Mr. Stafford, Mrs. Anderson, and Mr. Giffin as we work to provide not only the best possible extra-curricular opportunities for our students, but also ensure their success in all other areas of development.” Mr. Hill earned his bachelor’s degree in education from Eastern Illinois University. During his tenure as athletic director he has taken on the challenge of managing football and volleyball in addition to the 10 other sports programs that the high school offers. During the last year the athletic program at Vienna has had over 150 student participants.
Stafford said, “I look forward to continuing in my service with Athletic Director Hill and have enjoyed watching as he and our coaching staff have established opportunities for our students to not only be strong athletes, but also instill character and teach lessons that will benefit them for a lifetime.”
During the board meeting Mr. Stafford explained that the restructuring will create a cost saving in excess of $110,000, “We are at a crucial time with school funding in Illinois and our school is not an exception to the crisis. We are making every attempt to ensure that we continue to provide quality opportunities for our students while balancing our budget against the state not allocating promised funds to schools.”