Principal Andy Peterson joins CR

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New high school and elementary principal Andy Peterson is wrapping up baseball season in Lamoni, where he currently serves as head varsity coach and pre-K-12 principal. Pictured with Peterson from left are daughter Ava, wife LeeAnn, son Mack, and daughter Kaydence. (Photo submitted)

By Molly Moser

Following the retirement of Clayton Ridge superintendent Allan Nelson and the resignation of high school principal Kris Einck in early June, the Clayton Ridge School Board acted swiftly to fill two of the district’s most important roles. The board chose middle and elementary school principal Shane Wahls to serve as the new superintendent of schools, as well as continuing in his position as middle school principal. Winterset native Andy Peterson has been hired as elementary and high school principal. 

Peterson graduated from the University of Dubuque in 2004. “Having gone to college in Dubuque and living in the northeast Iowa area for nearly 10 years, we knew the area well. It is a beautiful area and we had been through Guttenberg many times,” Peterson told The Press. Peterson and his wife, LeeAnn, will have a solid network of friends and family nearby when they move with their children to Guttenberg or Garnavillo. 

The Petersons have three children: An eight-year-old daughter, Ava, a seven-year-old daughter, Kaydence, and a four-year-old son, Mack. Their four-legged family members are a Brittany named Missy and a Labrador named Maya. 

Peterson launched his teaching career in Dubuque as an Elementary Physical Education instructor in 2005. He began pursuit of an administrative certificate from the University of Northern Iowa in 2008, completing the program in the spring of 2010. From there, Peterson accepted a principalship position at the Lamoni Elementary School, serving for three years before becoming the pre-K-12 principal for the 2014-15 school year. 

Coaching is another way Peterson contributes to the wellbeing of area youth. He’s spent 14 years as a high school baseball coach, and is currently finishing up his last season with the varsity players for the Lamoni Demons of south central Iowa. He has also dedicated five years to being a high school football coach. 

Peterson’s daughters are involved in dance, tumbling, and softball, and the family enjoys hunting, shed hunting, and fishing. “We enjoy outdoor activities and look forward to those opportunities in the Clayton Ridge area,” said the new principal.   

The Petersons are eager to meet Clayton Ridge parents, students and community members. “My family and I are looking forward to becoming a part of the community and getting to know everyone. Everyone has been very welcoming! I’m also looking forward to welcoming students in August for a successful 2015-2016 school year.” 

Part of Peterson’s decision to join the Clayton Ridge District stemmed from the impressive work the district has done with technology and response to intervention (RTI), a multi-tier approach to the early identification and support of students with learning and behavior needs. “This work fits well with my educational beliefs and priorities,” said Peterson. “I’m excited to be a part of moving this work forward!”

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