Beginning July 1, Sally Lyon will be the focal point of student achievement for Columbia Public Schools. Lyon was recently named director of research, assessment and accountability by Superintendent Phyllis Chase.
In the newly created position, Lyon — currently assistant principal at Gentry Middle School — will coordinate the district-wide efforts in student progress and achievement, providing support for district faculty in improving student performance in all aspects.
“I am looking forward to the opportunity to work with the faculty and to be usable and user-friendly,” she said. “I would like to give them all the support I can because principals and teachers make learning happen.”
Lyon is married to Don Ludwig, a member of the Columbia Board of Education. She said that although some people have raised concerns, she does not expect any conflicts to arise with this new appointment.
“Don and I each contribute to education in our own way,” Lyon said. “We are always mindful of issues of confidentiality and any conflicts of interest, even the appearance.”
Lyon began working for Columbia Public Schools in 1993 as a teacher at Mill Creek Elementary School. Before becoming assistant principal, she served as an assistant to the principal at Gentry.
Carol Garman is also awaiting a job change in the Columbia district — she has been selected as the new principal of Field Elementary School.
“I am looking forward to working with a staff committed to the Field mission,” Garman said. “They have made lots of gains, and I would like to work with them to continue that.”
Garman said she is also looking forward to establishing relationships not only with her staff, but also with students and families at the school.
“I would like to communicate more with the community, to tell them all the good things that are happening at the school,” she said. “I would like to see more community involvement and build more relationships for student success.”
Garman, currently assistant principal of Paxton Keeley Elementary School, has been with the Columbia School District since 1996, when she became assistant director of special education.
Before that, Garman worked in special education at Central Missouri State University as a graduate teaching assistant and with Clinton Public Schools as a middle school teacher. She also served as an elementary special education teacher and as director of special education in the Henry County R-1 School District.
Garman succeeds Ed Schumacher, who was recently named the new principal of Russell Boulevard Elementary School.
Craig Martin also awaits a step up in the district. Succeeding Jack Jensen, who was appointed assistant superintendent for elementary education, Martin will become principal of Smithton Middle School.
“I am very excited to work with a wonderful group of teachers, students and parents,” Martin said. “We are going to work very hard to make this the best educational program possible.”
Currently assistant principal at Smithton, Martin began work in the district in 1984 as a science teacher at West Junior High School. Since then, he has served as administrative assistant at West Junior.