Wheaton welcomes new super
In July, the Wheaton R-III School District welcomed a new superintendent, who will bring over 40 years of experience in education and administration to the district.
"I think we will have a good year," said Wheaton Superintendent Joe Layton. "I'm familiar with Wheaton because I have worked in the conference. This is a strong community that supports its school and town.
"That is one thing that really attracted me to this position," said Layton. "The school and town work well together."
Layton began his extensive career in education, teaching at the elementary and junior high school levels. After 10 years of teaching, he accepted an elementary school principal position in Afton, Okla., which he held for two years.
Layton also served as an elementary school principal in Pitcher, Okla., for five years before accepting an assistant superintendent's position and then moving into the superintendent position at the district.
After around 19 years in Pitcher, Okla., Layton decided to move to southwest Missouri, which brought him to the superintendent's position at the Purdy R-II School District. He held that position for eight years and then accepted a superintendent's position in the Seneca School District, which he held an additional three years.
Last year, Layton decided he was ready to retire from his career in education and administration. He accepted a consultant position with Controlled Technology Solutions (CTS), which offers energy savings solutions.
"I really missed education and wanted to get back into it and be around kids," said Layton. "The timing was right, and I enjoy working with students in this type of district. I really enjoyed working at Purdy, and this district is similar."
Over the next few months, Layton plans to spend time discussing district goals with Wheaton's administrative team and school board members.
"First, I want to sit down with the other administrators and see where we are," said Layton. "I plan to continue what was started by Dr. Jim Cummins. I want to continue the progress that has been made on our achievement tests and in other areas. The district is headed in the right direction."
In addition to over 40 years of experience, Layton has served on the Oklahoma School Administrators' Association Board of Directors, the Oklahoma State Superintendent Advisory Council and the Oklahoma Rural School Association Board of Directors.
Layton received his bachelor's degree in education at Oklahoma State University in Stillwater, Okla. He also earned a masters and a specialists degree from Pittsburg State University in Pittsburg, Kan.