At its December work session, the Randolph Board of Education approved the appointment of Thomas Rathjen as the new vice principal of Center Grove and Ironia Elementary schools.
Rathjen, a former middle school principal, is an instructional strategies specialist who trains teachers and administrators in best practices and technology infusion across all disciplines and grade levels. He will assume the post of Dr. Michelle Telischak who was recently appointed as the new principal of Fernbrook Elementary School. Telischak succeeds Danielle Soldivieri, who was named the district’s new director of Elementary Education. Rathjen, Soldivieri, and Telischak will assume their new posts in early January.
An enthusiastic Rathjen thanked the Board of Education and administration for their support.
“I am thrilled to be a part of Randolph and to work at Center Grove and Ironia,” he said. “I have been lucky enough to work with these teachers in the past and look forward to continuing our work together. I also look forward to learning more about the teachers I have not worked with directly.”
Afterwards, Rathjen, who will split his time between the two schools, said he is eagerly anticipating the chance to work in a school district again. “The opportunity for a more sustained focus on good instruction is very exciting,” he said.
Superintendent Jennifer A. Fano congratulated Rathjen at the meeting and thanked board members for their support. “Mr. Rathjen will be an excellent addition to our administrative team,” she said.
Rathjen, who has worked for the IDE Corp. since 2014, was the principal of Jackson Middle School in Oklahoma City in 2014, assistant principal of U.S. Grant High School in Oklahoma City in 2013, and Jackson Middle School in 2011-12. He has also worked as the Center Director for the Huntington Learning Center in Springfield and the Center Director/Director of Education for multiple locations of the Sylvan Learning Center in California, Texas and Oklahoma.
Rathjen of Rockaway has a masters of education in educational leadership and a bachelor’s in communication education from the University of Central Oklahoma, a university with an intense focus on education and educational leadership.