Martfeld hired as SSHS principal
■ Snavely leaves SSHS for position at Springdale
Anne Martfeld of Springdale was hired as the new Siloam Springs High School principal during Thursday’s school board meeting.
Martfeld was one of six new licensed employees and two administrators hired during the meeting. Victoria Groomer of Siloam Springs was hired as assistant principal at Allen Elementary School.
Martfeld was hired as the the sixth- through eighth-grade principal at Don Tyson School of Innovation in May for the upcoming school year before accepting the job in Siloam Springs. She will replace Jason Jones, who resigned last month to take a position at Springdale High School — the largest high school in the state.
Martfeld served as the assistant principal at Don Tyson School of Innovation since 2016, according to her resume. Before that, she was a junior high assistant principal in Springdale, and served as an administrator in the Rogers School District. Previously, she
worked as a business teacher, and cheer and dance coach in Fayetteville, Fort Smith and Bartlesville, Okla., schools.
Martfeld has a bachelor’s degree in communication from the University of Arkansas, a master of science in educational leadership from Arkansas State University and is currently pursuing an educational specialist degree from the ASU.
Superintendent Ken Ramey said that 25 candidates applied for the high school principal’s position. Seven candidates were interviewed, including three internal and four external candidates.
An interview panel consisting of eight Siloam Springs administrators, including Ramey, unanimously chose Martfeld for the position.
“Through the interview process and visiting with her reference, we believe that she will be a terrific instructional leader for our high school,” the panel wrote in a recommendation letter. “Her dedication to education and commitment to excellence were evident through the interview. She has experience in leading a conversion charter school, a background in career education and a deep knowledge of processes for creating an effective and efficient instructional environment. Her references spoke well of her work ethic, her impeccable people skills, her heart, her devotion to education and her leadership skills.”
Ramey said that Martfeld has 21 years of experience in education with a great academic focus paralleling the high school’s aims. He described her as methodical and well organized.
“I think she will be a strong leader for us,” Ramey said. “She will be our first female leader in the district at the high school.”
Groomer will replace Amy Hufford, who is transferring to the position of assistant principal at Southside Elementary School.
Groomer spent the last nine years serving Springdale schools, first as an elementary classroom teacher and most recently as an instructional facilitator for the past four years. Prior to working in Springdale, Groomer was an English as a second language assistant in Rogers Schools, according to the letter recommending her for the position of assistant principal at Allen Elementary School.
Groomer has a bachelor’s degree in elementary education from the U of A, and a master’s in educational leadership from Harding University.
There were 46 applicants for the position and seven were interviewed by a committee of Siloam Springs administrators, according to the recommendation letter, written by Tanya Johnson, principal of Allen Elementary School.
“The interview committee and I believe her experiences as a teacher and instructional facilitator will be an asset in the role as assistant principal at Allen Elementary,” Johnson wrote.
Ramey said that Groomer is very strong instructionally and very focused.
“I am looking forward to working with her, and I feel like she will be a difference-maker for young children,” he said.
School board members also accepted resignations from eight licensed staff members at Thursday’s meeting, including Kevin Snavely, vice high school principal, and Sarah Jones, Panther Health and Wellness Clinic director.
Snavely was hired as assistant principal at Springdale High School, Ramey said. He has served the Siloam Springs High School for the past seven years, according to his resignation letter.
“I will forever be indebted to you, the school board and the leadership of the Siloam Springs School District for giving me an opportunity to learn and grow,” Snavely wrote. “However, I am excited that I will have the opportunity to continue my career at my alma mater, Springdale High School.”
Sarah Jones, wife of Jason Jones, has also accepted a position in Springdale Schools, Ramey said. In her resignation letter, she explained that she is leaving Siloam Springs to help her family transition to a new community.
“I have deep appreciation for the experience, relationships and impact that being a part of this team has made on my life,” Jones wrote. “Thank you for allowing me to serve the students, staff and families within the district, it has been a pleasure.”
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