Marion City Schools announces new principals

Marion City Schools has promoted leaders from within the school district to fill the positions of principal at Marion Harding High School, Grant Middle School and McKinley Elementary School. Changes in leadership were required to fill vacancies and address needs. The choice was made to promote from within to maintain focus on the district’s Four Pillars, which address student leadership, personalized learning, research-based reading instruction and college/career ready skills.

Harding High School
Jen Musbach, an assistant principal at Harding since 2016, will serve as Harding’s new principal starting with the 2017-18 school year. Musbach served as principal of Grant Middle School from 2014 to 2016 and previously served as dean of students and taught at Harding.

“I am excited to lead the work that the students, staff and community have started,” Musbach said. “We are moving through career clusters, pathways, and ensuring every graduate earns a diploma plus acceptance. Harding High School continues to be a place where students and staff succeed.”

Musbach succeeds Forrest Trisler, who resigned to accept a position in another school district.

Harding biology teacher Michael Panamarczuk was promoted to the position of assistant principal. Todd Schneider, previously dean of students at Harding before becoming assistant director at Rushmore Academy, will also return to Harding as an assistant principal as Kirk Ballinger moves to Grant Middle School.

Samantha Chatman, a Dublin City Schools teacher with 10 years of teaching experience, will join the staff at Harding as an assistant principal. The Marion City Schools Board of Education hired Chatman to succeed Assistant Principal Ryan Rismiller, who accepted employment as a principal in another school district.

Grant Middle School
Ballinger, currently dean of students and an assistant principal at Harding, will succeed Adam Kunkle as principal of Grant Middle School. Kunkle accepted a position as Marion City Schools’ new director of secondary curriculum.

Ballinger started his teaching career at Marion City Schools 36 years ago before teaching in Elgin Local Schools and serving as an assistant principal at Pleasant High School. He returned to Marion City Schools two years ago as dean of students at Harding.

“Marion City Schools is where I started my educational journey 36 years ago, and to come full circle with the opportunity to lead a tremendous staff at Grant Middle School will be a humbling experience,” Ballinger said. “I am looking forward to working collaboratively with the entire district to continue the process of showcasing what the Marion City Schools have to offer.”

McKinley Elementary
Matthew Holsinger, an assistant principal at Grant Middle School, will lead McKinley Elementary as its new principal. McKinley Principal Erika Bower will move to Grant as an assistant principal.

Holsinger, a Marion native, worked as an intervention specialist at North Union Local Schools before becoming an assistant principal at Grant. He has served as an assistant principal at Grant for three years.

“It is with the utmost honor of being named principal of McKinley Elementary that I pledge to inspire and lead McKinley in continuing to fulfill the district’s mission and vision,” Holsinger said. “McKinley and Marion City Schools have a bright future ahead. I look forward to inspiring the community of McKinley and helping our students reach their fullest potential.”

Holsinger said he would actively listen to and work collaboratively with parents and guardians.

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