Next year, the Southwest R-V School District will welcome Brad Clark, of Carthage, as its new high school principal. Clark has over 10 years of coaching and teaching experience in area school districts.
"I think he really wants to get involved in uniting the high school and the community," said Superintendent Doug Lawyer. "He's very interested in becoming part of the community and very eager to get involved in our CSIP planning.
"He has attended some of our CSIP meetings and came down to watch a baseball game," said Lawyer. "I think he's already trying to get involved in our community."
"I hope to work on improving discipline issues and academic scores at Southwest," said Clark. "I also want to increase the need for the A+ and High Schools That Work programs and the overall school and community morale."
Clark, who received a bachelor of science degree in physical education from Pittsburg State University in Pittsburg, Kan., began his teaching career by serving as a student teacher and coach in the Baxter Springs School District in Kansas.
After receiving his undergraduate degree, he became a full-time substitute teacher at the Riverton School District in Kansas before accepting a physical and health education teaching position at the Breckenridge School District.
In 1997, Clark took a break from teaching in the public school system and accepted a position working for the Department of Corrections in Cameron. He served as a recreational officer, caseworker, GED teacher and probation and parole officer.
Clark held the Department of Corrections position until 2002. During this time, he also served as a coach for Thomas Jefferson Day School in Joplin and the Joplin Family YMCA, where he is still active.
After leaving the position in Cameron, Clark coached middle school football and boys' basketball in the Carl Junction School District for two months and then became the academic coordinator of the Upward Bound Program at Northeastern Oklahoma A&M College in Miami, Okla.
In 2003, Clark returned to Thomas Jefferson Day School as a middle school boys' basketball coach, a position he held for around five months. He then began serving as middle school and high school science instructor and football, basketball and track and field coach in the Joplin School District.
Clark became the high school strength and conditioning coach, freshman health teacher and lifetime sports instructor at Diamond High School in 2005. During this time, he earned a master's degree in educational administration from William Woods University in Fulton.
In 2006, Clark accepted a full-time kindergarten through 12th grade physical education teaching position at the Sheldon School District. He also held the director of transportation position and several coaching responsibilities at Sheldon.
Prior to accepting the high school principal position at Southwest, Clark served as assistant principal in the Avilla School District, where he worked as athletic director, transportation director and head boys' basketball coach.
Last year, Clark also earned a specialist degree in educational administration from William Woods University.