Former Valley Academy Principal to Head Painted Rock

Mrs. Leslie Szostak - Painted Rock AcademyReid Traditional Schools’ Painted Rock Academy is proud to announce the selection of the school’s founding principal. Mrs. Leslie Szostak has been named to the post, continuing her six-year relationship with Valley Academy and Reid Traditional Schools.

Mrs. Szostak served as Principal at Valley Academy for four years until her retirement in 2010. For the past two years, she has stayed in touch as a substitute teacher and as an involved grandparent of two Valley Academy students. The opportunity to open a new traditional school drew her back into the Principal’s office. “I’m glad I can contribute to Painted Rock Academy’s solid academic foundation,” she stated.

One of the keys to the success of Painted Rock Academy will be its strong partnership with Valley Academy. “Mrs. Szostak’s knowledge of the curriculum, teaching methods, and personnel at both schools can only enhance that collaboration,” said Heidi Mitchell, CEO of Reid Traditional Schools. As head of the organization overseeing both schools, Ms. Mitchell continued, “Mrs. Szostak is a great asset; having her on board will ease the process of implementing Valley Academy’s time-tested curriculum and high standards at the new location.”

Mrs. Szostak came to education after a career in banking. She taught 7th grade U.S. History for seven years before becoming certified as a Principal with the Department of Education and moving into school administration. She served two years as Assistant Principal and four years as Principal at a district K-8 school with over 1500 students. When that school expanded, she was Principal over the K-4 building for three additional years until joining Valley Academy as Principal in 2006.

Mrs. Szostak is already hard at work hiring staff and visiting with parents and students. “For so many years, Valley Academy had to turn away hundreds of children because the school was at maximum enrollment. I’m so happy to be able to help open our new campus and make our program available to more students.”

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