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Larson resigns asGarrison principal

7/23/09 (Thu)

Larson resigns asGarrison principal
By CHERYL ODDEN
With just four weeks until the beginning of the 2009-10 school year, the Garrison School District has a new challenge – filling the position of high school principal.
An announcement of the vacancy was made by Superintendent Steve Brannan during Monday’s Garrison Chamber of Commerce meeting.
Following the meeting, Brannan provided additional information regarding the resignation of Mark Larson this past week.
“This (Larson’s resignation) is a tremendous loss to the district and to me personally,” he said.
According to Brannan, Larson has been a valuable member of the school’s educational team since he was hired as a faculty member for the 1979-80 school year. He later earned a master’s degree in educational administration. He has served as high school principal for 14 years.
According to Brannan, Larson’s absence will definitely leave a void.
Noting that the job of principal requires interaction with faculty members and students in several different capacities, Brannan said Larson excelled.
“His heart was with every teacher and with every kid.” He applauded Larson’s ability to be fair and consistent with students. Brannan added, “I think he cared so much more than people realized … he loves kids and he loved coaching junior high football.” He added, “He’s been a strong education leader.”
Even though Larson has decided to retire, Brannan said he is hopeful that his face will remain a familiar sight at the school.
Larson and his wife Pat plan to remain in Garrisonand he has agreed to serve as a substitute teacher. Brannan added that Larson would be offered a co-curricular contract as the school’s jr. high football coach.
As of this week, the school district is advertising for someone to fill the position of high school principal. Larson was out of town and unavailable for comment.
Turning his attention to other vacancies for the upcoming school year, Brannan said two other key positions remain open. He said two applicants have been interviewed for the position of music director and that, hopefully, a decision will be reached this week. Jim Snustad, music director at the school for the past 10 years, resigned at the end of the school year to accept a position in Cavalier.
Anita Laib, a faculty member since 2002, resigned to accept a teaching position in Turtle Lake. Laib taught English, speech and was yearbook advisor. Her position remains open.