BACK TO SCHOOL: Frank moves to Prospect Elementary

Except for a few teacher swaps this year at Prospect Elementary School, principal Chris Frank said not much is changing in his building prior to opening day.

Fourth grade teacher Nicole Pepsny is taking a one-year maternity leave and will be replaced by Eastwood Elementary kindergarten teacher Markie Rivera.

A long-term substitute will be hired to replace art teacher Kathleen Hilton, who is taking a half-year leave.

Frank, who led Langston Middle School last year, was chosen to serve as principal at Prospect when former principal Jim Eibel moved into the position of pupil services director for the district.

Inspired by Eibel’s success with building a collaborative and caring culture among students and teachers, Frank said he isn’t looking to change much.

“I want to support what is already happening and enhance what we already do well,” he said.

Improved communication between staff and students is high on a list of priorities this year. Frank said it’s just as important to build relations with moms, dads, and grandparents to make sure every family feels a part of the school community.

For Frank, it all boils down to getting to know kids on a personal basis. Teachers must meet them on their level — interest level, social level, academic level — and use their strengths to find ways to hook them, he said.

While accentuating those motivators will keep learners engaged, Frank urges students to try their best and “come to school with an attitude that I’m going to be one day smarter when I leave today.”

Laurie Hamame can be reached at 440-775-1611 or @HamameNews on Twitter.

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By Laurie Hamame

Prospect Elementary School

Principal: Chris Frank

Start time: 8:35 a.m.

Release time: 3:30 p.m.

Number of students: 220

Grades: 3-5