Though it’s been almost 10 years since Ryan Siebe was an English teacher at Farragut High School, relationships remain ingrained from six school years at FHS (2001-2007).
Stressing an open door policy of communication, the new FHS principal also said he’s best suited for the high school environment.
“I definitely have an advantage having taught at Farragut, being familiar with the community quite well,” Siebe, appointed new principal last month, said. “That’s a big advantage in and of itself.
“The other aspect of it that is really going to be big is getting input from the community,” Siebe, principal at Carter High School the previous three school years, added. “If we need to know which direction to head we need to hear from students, we need to hear from staff, we need to hear from the community.
“I really hope that if parents have concerns, that they bring it to me and not have to wait for a quarterly meeting. To know, ‘hey, here’s a concern,’ I would hope people would call me and share that.”
Looking back, “I got into education for the students, I love talking to the students,” Siebe said. “I’ll be out talking to students as much as possible.”
As for leadership, “I’m not really a micro-manager,” Siebe, 42, said. “I believe you go out and get the best people, you set goals and you trust your people to get the job done. “
An administrator at five different high schools, which also included assistant principal duties at West, Austin-East and Fulton totaling five school years, Siebe said about pinpointing issues at FHS, “Once you identify those, then you better really keep a laser focus on those goals, and I think I do that pretty well. Sometimes there can be static that gets in the way of what you’re trying to accomplish.”
Learning from experience, “I think I’m better in high school than I am in middle school, that’s for sure,” Siebe said. “I taught one year of middle school, and it’s funny because I realized there was kind of a gap in communication between me and middle school kids. Ultimately, you’ve got to be around kids that you kind of have the best connection with, and for me that is high school kids.”
Siebe’s wife, Shannon Siebe, is International Baccalaureate coordinator for Knox County Schools. They have three sons.
Candace Greer, a 1998 FHS graduate, has been appointed the school’s curriculum principal. “It’s like coming home, it’s so great because I do live in the community,” Greer, who begins her 11th school year with KCS this month, said.
Curriculum principal at Gresham Middle last school year, Greer also has served as an academic coach at Vine Middle and an English teacher at West High.
Greer and husband, Brian Greer, have a 4-year-old daughter.