Nation Valley News
KEMPTVILLE — Back to school is only a few weeks away, and this year many changes have been made to the administrative departments of several schools within the Upper Canada District School Board (UCDSB), including North Grenville District High School (NGDHS).
Julie Iwachniuk has been working for the UCDSB now for over 18 years. She is best known for her 12-year career as a French teacher for the immersion program at Seaway District High School (SDHS), where students enjoyed her upbeat personality, humour, and positive encouragement.
When Iwachniuk first started teaching, she went in “thinking I was a French teacher for life,” she exclaimed to Nation Valley News. That is clearly not the case now.
She next tried her hand in Special Education for her most recent year at Seaway, and after 13 consective years at the Iroquois secondary school, it was time for a change of scenery.
She dedicated her next three years working as a Program Resource Teacher for the Board. There she would spend at a lot time on the road.
“One day I would be in Almonte and then the next day I could be in Vankleek Hill,” she said.
It was during this time that she took a principal’s course, after seeing an email sent out looking for applicants across the Board.
“That’s when I saw the bigger picture,” she added.
She returned for another year at Seaway where she was mentored by the out-going long-time guidance counsellor, Mark Lewis.
While in guidance “it hit me” Iwachniuk explained.
“I loved guidance. I could’ve stayed there. But I never wanted any regrets. I think admin is where I need to be next. I can make a much larger impact, and that’s exciting.”
To her surprise in the last few weeks of school this year, during exam time, she got the call.
“I was thrilled when the superintendent called and offered me the job,” she said excitedly.
“I’m excited to be in Kemptville. It’s such a blooming city. To be a part of a community like that is very exciting,” Iwachniuk continued.
She spoke on how up-to-date the newly constructed school is and how it has a lot of similarities to Seaway.
Although the school is much bigger and has over 800 students in attendance, they are both “good at keeping up with technology and tech-savvy.”
She realizes that there will be a bit of a learning curve but she is up for the challenge, and is really looking forward to meeting the students and teachers.
“I see a lot of my work experience being beneficial for my new role,” she said confidently.
The former French teacher is glad that she will still remain within the UCDSB. “An interesting fact is that I grew up in this area and attended UCDSB schools back in the day when our board was SD&G. It’s exciting to be able to work for a board that I was a student in.”
NGDHS’s newest administrative asset will also work alongside a second incoming vice-principal, Leann Bruley — former teacher at Kemptville Public School.
(As a former four-year student of Iwachniuk’s, this reporter can personally attest to just how amazing she was as a French teacher; students of NGDHS are very fortunate to have her as their new vice principal; she will do great things. Best of luck with your bright future!)
Iwachniuk is among the numerous administrative shifts set to take place in the UCDSB come September.
Other changes in the local community include:
- NDDHS’s retired Principal Brenda Beaudette will be replaced by Angela Grandy formerly of Vankleek Hill Collegiate
- Eric Barker will fill the open vice principal position at Seaway District High School
- Former secondary students of the closing Rothwell-Osnabruck High School will keep their previous principal Ewen McIntosh, as he will be continuing as their principal at Tagwi SS
View the list below to see the numerous changes to the administrative departments throughout the board.
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