USD 232 hires Gail Holder as next principal of Mill Valley

Leah Wankum - February 14, 2020 9:00 am
Gail Holder will be the third principal of Mill Valley High since the school opened in 2000 in Shawnee.

Unified School District No. 232 has named Gail Holder as the next principal of Mill Valley High. Her appointment is not official until the school board gives formal approval March 2, but district staff made the announcement to staff on Wednesday morning and published the announcement online.

Holder has been assistant principal at Olathe East High since 2018. She will take the place of Tobie Waldeck, who announced in November 2019 that he will retire at the end of this school year. Waldeck was Mill Valley principal for nine years and has served 30 years in education, 29 of those in the district.

Holder’s first day on the job is scheduled for July 1. She will be the third principal of Mill Valley since the school opened in 2000.

“We are pleased to have Gail Holder joining the Mill Valley High School community,” said Superintendent Frank Harwood. “It became clear to us through the interview process that included parents, students, and teachers that she is the individual who will help MVHS continue to improve and support our vision of maximizing the potential of every student.”

District staff noted that Holder’s appointment follows “an extensive search process” with by the school district which included multiple applicants and involved finalist interviews with students, staff and parents.

“I am incredibly honored to be selected as the next principal of Mill Valley High School,” Holder said. “I look forward to serving the students, staff and community by building on the already established tradition of excellence.”

Holder plans to start meeting the Mill Valley community in the coming weeks in anticipation of her new role.

Holder has nearly 30 years of professional experience in education, which includes two years as assistant director of teaching and learning in the Olathe Public Schools. She is also the district’s secondary English Language Arts coordinator, a current position she has held since 2012. Prior to her district role, Holder was an ELA instructor at Olathe South High School since 1992, as well as the director of dance.

She earned her bachelor’s degree in English and a master’s degree in curriculum and instruction from the University of Kansas. She completed a doctoral program through Baker University.

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