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KSD Announces New Principal of Kirkwood High School

At the regularly scheduled Kirkwood School District Board of Education meeting on Monday, January 23, the board approved the recommendation for the hire of Dr. Seth Harrell as the new principal for Kirkwood High School effective July 1, 2023. at the start of the 2023-23 school year. 


Dr. Harrell is currently the principal of Jackson High School, where he has served in that capacity since 2016. During his time at Jackson High School, he helped foster his school community through several significant changes, including changes to the school population, updates to scheduling models, and a modification in grading systems. He also managed his school during significant construction on the campus for a major addition. Previously, he was principal of Sikeston High School and a principal and assistant principal of Sikeston Junior High School. During his career, he has also served students as a history teacher and coach.     


The selection of Dr. Harrell was made based on feedback from a committee of staff, students, parents, and community members. In developing a profile for the ideal candidate, the District coordinated a digital survey that received feedback from more than 800 individuals. 


Dr. Harrell will succeed Dr. Mike Havener, who will be retiring after serving the Kirkwood School District for the last 29 years. Dr. Havener has been principal of Kirkwood High School for the past 12 years. During his leadership, Kirkwood High School was named a 2022 National Blue Ribbon School, experienced significant expansions due to community support, and promoted excellence for all our students. 


“We want to thank all of the individuals who contributed their time and feedback throughout the selection process,” said Superintendent David Ulrich. “As a result of that effort, I am excited to welcome Dr. Harrell as the next principal of Kirkwood High School. His previous work, as well as the information shared throughout his interview, made it clear he is a student-centered educator with the experience and knowledge to lead Kirkwood High School.” 


Dr. Harrell earned a Doctorate in Educational Leadership and Policy Analysis from University of Missouri-Columbia, a Master’s degree in Educational Administration from William Woods University and a Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice from Southeast Missouri State University.