Former Knight Finds New Home
Valley High School’s new principal JC Kimble admits that the transition from a Tyler Knight to a Valley Lumberjack is a bit of a challenge. However, it is a challenge this first-time principal is excited about and more than ready to conquer.
“It’s a change,” Kimble admits. “It’s a lot more responsibility obviously than a high school teacher. I have 13 years of experience being in a classroom in a high school setting. A lot of the stuff I knew, but now it’s up to me to put a lot of those things in play. It’s a big responsibility but one I’m ready for and excited about.”
Kimble says the biggest challenge dealt with being hired late in the summer.
“It’s no one’s fault, just timing. We had a lot of stuff to get done in a short amount of time. We had a lot to get accomplished in three to four weeks. A lot of the staff picked up some of the slack, and we got it done. We’re rolling now.”
Kimble graduated from Tyler Consolidated High School, and his children attend Tyler County Schools, however Kimble is now very much a Lumberjack.
“As long as we aren’t playing (Tyler), I’ll still look and see (Tyler’s) score,” he noted, adding that former students of his also play for Tyler’s sports teams. ” I want them to do well,” he explained.
Kimble admits that he will also miss his former Knight co-workers.
“I will miss them, but I’m learning about all the new teachers here,” Kimble said. “They are great teachers, and I’m excited to be a part of the school.”
Kimble said he bided for the principals position knowing he loved his job and loved where he was at. However, he wanted the challenge.
“I can’t say that too much,” Kimble said. “It’s a big challenge. It’s one I’m ready for, and it’s a step in my life where I’m ready for something a little different. I think this is where I was meant to be.”
One of Kimble’s goals as Valley’s new principal is to increase test scores. “We want to get test scores up. Around the whole state, test scores weren’t great last year. I understand that. It was a new test.”
VHS currently has strategies to get literacy and reading involved in every classroom in hopes to raise the Math and English/Language test scores. Kimble stated that he challenged students on the first day of school, encouraging them to bring their proficiency scores up in hopes to obtain some of the highest test scores in the state.
“The academic background here is great,” Kimble stated. “We have great teachers here and the kids are extremely bright and intelligent.”
This is the third principal for Valley High School seniors in four years.
“That is really hard for anyone in any walk of life,” Kimble stated. “You don’t know what to expect. Myself, along with the teachers . . . we are on the same page with consistency. Everyone is going to be on the same page. If it’s not allowed in one room, it’s not going to be allowed in this room. The expectations are high. It’s something students need. They need to be pushed. I told the seniors I want this to be the best year they’ve ever had. Senior year is something they will remember the rest of their life. I told them I don’t plan on leaving at the end of the year. That’s not in my cards. I plan on being here.”
Kimble obviously has a habit of staying in one spot, as well as meeting success. He spent the last 11 years as the technology education teacher at Tyler Consolidated. While acting as TSA advisor, his team was at the top in the state.
Kimble has also served as basketball coach, track coach, and soccer coach. He was also a special education teacher for four years. However, he also has experience in Wetzel County as his first two years of teaching were spent in Wetzel County.
Kimble lives in Tyler County with his wife and two kids, a seven-year-old and and a 10-year-old
One of the changes Kimble is striving to implement deals with school culture.
“We are getting back to the old motto – excellence, pride, and respect,” he stated. “The kids have to own their school. If the kids don’t own their school, we really have nothing. That’s something every teacher is driving here – excellence, pride, and respect. If you can get those three things ingrained in a student’s brain, you have nothing else to worry about, because everything will fall in line.”
Valley High School’s principal also wants his students to know that they can talk to him. “I’ll talk to anybody,” Kimble stated. “And I think the kids have understood that. I’m very pleased with how the community has taken to me. It’s been great. The support from community members has been great. I appreciate everything they’ve done. The community involvement is what we want. We want them to back their school, and they back them 120 percent ,” Kimble stated. “It’s going to be a fun year here at Valley High School.”