Matthew Lindley, who has been a secondary education administrator in Ohio for 16 years, has been chosen as the new Harrison High School principal.
The Board of Education for the Southwest Local School District unanimously selected Lindley, who will replace Davis Baker starting in the 2017-18 school year.
Since July 2011, Lindley has been director-principal of secondary education for the Greene County Career Center near Xenia. The center serves students from the seven school districts in Greene County as well as those who attend private and parochial schools. It offers 17 career-technical programs for high school juniors and seniors.
“During the interviews, what came through clearly is his passion for the students as well as the teaching and learning process,” said Superintendent John C. Hamstra. “He cares deeply about kids and their education.”
Lindley also stood out because he has the experience of not only working for traditional high schools but also a career-technical school and has shown he knows how to work with challenging students, Hamstra said. Additionally, he is adept at helping students navigate
the transition from middle school to high school and the transition from high school to their post-secondary lives.
As principal, Lindley said, his main focus will be students’ academic and social achievement. “To achieve this, I will fully support my teachers and do everything I can to provide the resources they need each day in the classroom,” he said. “I also want parents to feel that when their children come to school they find a safe and positive learning environment.”
Before becoming a principal, Lindley was an assistant principal at Butler Tech Career Technology Center and Ross High School. He started his career in the Lakota Local School District, teaching U.S. history, government and economics and coaching the wrestling team. All three are in Butler County.
Lindley, who lives in West Chester, has a master’s degree in arts and teaching from Xavier University. He earned a bachelor’s degree in liberal arts from Purdue University.
At Purdue, he was an All-American in Division 1 wrestler. Hamstra, the Southwest superintendent, also wrestled in school as did Baker, the current principal. “We do love hiring former wrestlers,” Hamstra said. “I trust wrestlers. They work hard and have the grit that helps to make them successful.”
More than two dozen educators from as far away as Oregon and Florida applied for the position. A committee of 11 people -- including parents, teachers, students and support staff -- interviewed six candidates. Two finalists were interviewed a second time, including Lindley.
Baker is retiring after serving for five years as principal at Harrison High School. He worked for 17 years in the Southwest Local schools -- as a teacher, wrestling coach, assistant principal and principal.