GRAETTINGER - The "Help Wanted" sign isn't posted in front of the building, but the Graettinger-Terril Community Schools are in the market for a new Superintendent. Current Superintendent Jesse Ulrich submitted his resignation to the G-T School Board on Tuesday, April 16, to accept a similar position with the AHST/Walnut (Avoca-Hancock/Shelby-Tennant/Walnut) Community Schools in southern Iowa.
For Ulrich, a West Bend area native, the move was unexpected, as he had assumed the superintendent's position at G-T in 2012, after serving as 6-12 principal for two years.
According to Ulrich, he had not considered leaving the Graettinger-Terril district, especially after completing a partial-day sharing agreement with the neighboring Ruthven-Ayrshire Community Schools that will begin in the coming school year. But, when a professional search firm contacted him about the opening in the district that lies along Interstate 80, he decided looking wouldn't hurt.
"I felt I owed it to my family to at least take a look at it," Ulrich explained, "and what transpired was a positive experience in the interviews and I felt it was a good fit for me."
The Avo-Ha-Shelby-Tennant and Walnut school districts lie primarily in Pottawattamie County, along Interstate 80, east of Council Bluffs.
As the Superintendent, Ulrich will be the head administrator of districts serving around 800 students.
During his tenure in Graettinger-Terril, Ulrich was instrumental in the implementation of a one-to-one computer initiative for students in the high school, and saw his district earn recognition last year for outstanding educational development.
Additionally, G-T is completing the construction of a new facility to be used for weight training and a community fitness facility at Graettinger.
However, Ulrich is looking forward to the challenges of a new position in a new community.
"I'm excited to have multiple principals and an administrative team," Ulrich admitted. "They really want to create the best educational programs for their kids."
While the idea of leaving a community and district where great achievement have been made in recent years both academically and athletically, Ulrich is proud of the many positive things he has been a part of over the years,
"It's tought to leave. Graettinger-Terril has some of the best teachers in the state of Iowa," Ulrich said. "They truly care about the kids so much here. I'm going to remember all the relationships I've built over the last four years."