(Messenger-Inquirer (Owensboro, KY) Via Acquire Media NewsEdge) July 05--James A. "Ja" Wilson, a Boonville, Indiana, native who has been in the South Spencer County, Indiana, school system since 1999, has been named director of student services for Daviess County Public Schools.
Wilson, who began his new duties Tuesday, replaces Winthrop Kretman, who retired this year.
"I'm excited to be joining the Daviess County system," he said. "I like what Owensboro has been doing in recent years, the way they've beautified downtown."
Wilson worked in the transportation industry until he was 28.
Then, he decided that education was where he really wanted to be.
He went back to college to get degrees in social studies education and business administration from the University of Southern Indiana, where he also received a bachelor of science degree in history and political science.
"When it came time to student teach, I looked for a school system that might have an opening in social studies," Wilson said.
That's how he came to Spencer County, Indiana.
Wilson taught social studies at both South Spencer Middle School and South Spencer High School, beginning in 1999.
He became assistant principal at the high school in June 2002, managing student attendance and discipline and professional development for staff, while supporting data-driven classroom instruction.
Since 2007, Wilson has been principal at South Spencer Middle School.
"I don't have an assistant," he said, "so I wear a lot of hats. I've dealt on a smaller basis with most of the things I'll be dealing with in Daviess County."
His new responsibilities include implementation and oversight of attendance programs and student discipline policies as well as the coordination of services to students and families.
Wilson goes from leading a school with 330 students to working behind the scenes with more than 11,000.
He has an education specialist degree from Indiana State University and a master of arts degree in educational administration from Western Kentucky University.
Keith Lawrence, 691-7301, firstname.lastname@example.org
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