Bend-La Pine Schools Superintendent Shay Mikalson announced today that Kevin Gehrig will lead the planning for, and become the principal at, the district’s new 600-seat elementary school, scheduled to open in the fall of 2019 in north central Bend near OB Riley and Cooley roads.
Gehrig, currently in his 12th year as principal at Pine Ridge Elementary School, will begin planning work for the new school this winter, while continuing to work as principal at Pine Ridge Elementary through the end of the school year.
Gehrig will be succeeded by Rochelle Williams, currently the principal at Rosland Elementary School; Julie Linhares, currently the principal at Marshall High School, will replace Williams at Rosland; and Sal Cassaro, currently the Director of Secondary Programs, will replace Linhares as the principal of Marshall. Each of these principals will work with one another to prepare for the transition into their new roles that begin on July 1, 2018.
“We are excited to announce these principal changes, which will allow our best and brightest the opportunity to take on new challenges and experience well-deserved professional opportunities,” said Mikalson. “All four of these individuals have proven themselves and these lateral moves will benefit students and staff alike.”
Mikalson also announced that Mike Franklin, currently vice principal at Mountain View High School, has been selected to lead the new small high school that will open in Bend in the fall of 2018. The school will be located in north Bend and will be open to all district students.
Sal Cassaro is currently the Director of Secondary Programs, a position he has served in for more than five years. Cassaro is also principal at STRIVE and the district athletic coordinator. Prior to that, Cassaro served as an instruction designer for the High Desert ESD. He also has served as a classroom teacher and the middle and high school level.
Michael Franklin is currently the assistant principal at Mountain View High School, a position he has served in for the past two years. Prior to that, he served as an assistant dean and teacher at The Hawai’i Preparatory Academy in Hawaii for seven years. Franklin also has 10 years of teaching experience in Alaska, Hawaii, Washington and at Summit High School.
Kevin Gehrig is currently the principal at Pine Ridge Elementary School, a position he has served in for the past 12 years. Prior to that, Gehrig served as an assistant principal at Ensworth and Pine Ridge elementary schools for three years. He also has experience as a behavior specialist and classroom teacher at the elementary level.
Julie Linhares is currently the principal at Marshall High School, a position she has served in for the past seven years. Prior to that, she served as the assistant principal at Crescent Valley High School in Corvallis for three years. She also has 12 years of classroom teaching experience.
Rochelle Williams is currently the principal at Rosland Elementary School in La Pine, a position she has served in for the past five years. Prior to that, she served as the student services coordinator at Rosland and La Pine elementary schools for two years. She also has 14 years of classroom teaching experience, at both Lava Ridge Elementary School and La Pine Middle School.
In May 2017, voters in Bend, La Pine and Sunriver approved a construction bond that authorized Bend-La Pine Schools to sell $268.3 million in bonds to fund the construction of two new schools and 150 safety, maintenance and classroom addition projects. These projects will address continued enrollment growth, protect our community’s investment in its schools, support economic growth and go far to protect our quality of life now and for future generations.
More than half of the district’s elementary schools in Bend are near or over capacity. The new elementary school is being sited where overcrowding issues are the greatest and to meet current and anticipated future classroom shortages caused by decades of enrollment growth.
Learn more about the 2017 construction bond on our Bond 2017 webpage