“The beginning of any school year is exciting,” states Jon Thompson, who has a tentative agreement with the Rushford-Peterson School Board to take over as the school Superintendent on July 1, 2019, but says he is very excited for the start of the 2019-2020 school year and to be the superintendent of “a great school like Rushford-Peterson” and to get to know the students, parents and staff.
Thompson will replace Chuck Ehler, who is retiring after serving the district for 11 years.
The R-P School Board began their search for a new superintendent back in October of 2018. A second round of interviews was held on February 8, 2019 which narrowed the field down to three finalists.
The three finalists were Jon Thompson, Todd Lee, Superintendent of the Howard School District in Howard, S. Dak., and Jay Meiners, who is a teacher at Lakeview Public Schools in Cottonwood, Minn. When the board members met again in the afternoon of February 8 they voted unanimously to offer the position of superintendent to Thompson.
After the meeting Chairperson John Linder contacted Thompson, offering him the position, which Thompson verbally accepted. The board’s negotiation committee met to put together a salary and benefits package that was presented to the full board for approval at a special meeting held on Tuesday, February 19, 2019.
Thompson currently holds the position of superintendent at the Aplington-Parkersburg School District in Aplington, Iowa. He has been the Superintendent for A-P for 13 years and served as an administrator in the district for 26 years.
Thompson explains that he has 33 years in education, which includes seven years in the classroom and 26 years in school administration.
Before serving in administration, Thompson was an elementary teacher for two years at Allamakee Community Schools in Waukon, Iowa, and five years as an elementary teacher at Hampton Community Schools in Hampton, Iowa. While teaching in the elementary school Thompson was also a coach. He was the elementary/middle school principal at A-P from July 1993 – June 2006.
Thompson graduated from the University of Northern Iowa and completed his Master’s and Specialist Degrees in Educational Leadership at Drake University.
During his time at A-P Schools, Thompson worked with the school board and communities to pass two bond issues for new construction. He was a leader in helping the A-P school district to put a plan into effect for a 1:1 computer program for students in grades 4 – 12.
Thompson worked well with other nearby school districts and community colleges to begin sharing facilities, shared teachers, shared college credit courses, and shared work experience for students.
While at A-P Schools, the town was hit by an EF5 tornado that destroyed 40% of the community and part of the school. The school and community worked together and amazingly moved into their newly built school 15 months later.
The A-P school district also experienced a tragedy in 2009 by the shooting death of a well-liked football coach and teacher on the grounds of the school.
Thompson stood firm as a leader during these heartbreaking events and helped the community and school come together to get through some very trying times.
Thompson and his wife Lynn, who is a teacher associate, have four grown children: Alec, who lives and works in Los Angeles, Calif., Sam, who lives in Portland, Oreg., Katie, who lives in Cedar Falls, Iowa, and Megan who lives in Pawhuska, Okla.
When asked what his hobbies are, Thompson said he enjoys golf and, “I love to travel to see our children when possible,” he adds.
The Thompsons plan to move to the area in the near future and will find a temporary place to live while they look for a home to purchase.
Welcome to Fillmore County Mr. Thompson!