My name is John Klein and I am so excited to be your new elementary principal! I have been an elementary educator for 18 years serving students in diverse school settings ranging from urban to rural schools. Eight of those years were in the classroom teaching second, fourth, and fifth grades while the last ten have been as an elementary principal. I spent five years as a principal in Kalamazoo Public Schools at the Washington Writers’ Academy and another five years in Three Rivers Community Schools at Ruth Hoppin Elementary. I also spent a few months as the interim principal at Nottawa Community School, a K-8 building in St. Joseph County. I have earned a Masters degree in Elementary Education from John Carroll University and a Masters degree in Educational Leadership from Michigan State University.
I live in Kalamazoo with my wife, Kim, who is a Communications Manager at Stryker. We relocated to Michigan from Cleveland, Ohio, where we both grew up. Our son, Jack, is heading into his sophomore year at Calvin College and studying Sports Management. Jack is using the Kalamazoo Promise to help cover his college tuition. If you haven’t heard of the Kalamazoo Promise, it guarantees college tuition for any Michigan college or university for all graduates of Kalamazoo Public Schools. Not surprisingly, we are pretty tied to Kalamazoo since free college tuition is an amazing benefit to living in the district. Our daughter, Sara, will be a seventh grader at Hillside Middle School in Kalamazoo Public Schools. Sara would like me to mention that we have a dog named Lucy who is part Basenji and part Australian Shepherd. I am an avid reader of history and science fiction, a music lover (mostly rock), a collector of superhero memorabilia, and a die-hard Cleveland sports fan.
One of my priorities for the 2017-2018 school year is to listen, ask lots of questions, and learn from everyone—students, staff, parents, and community members—about what things we do well at Coloma Elementary School and where we need to improve. Communication is another priority to which I will dedicate myself. I believe educating students is a team effort for parents, schools, and the community and I encourage you to reach out to me about anything you’d like to discuss. I look forward to meeting you!