When middle schools in the Elkhorn area school district chose to adopt new instructional software, Principal John Gendron of Elkhorn Area High School, in Elkhorn, WI, took the announcement very seriously. After much discussion and private research, Gendron decided to forego the instructional software that other schools in the district were using in favor of a different program because his studies concluded that the latter program would be best for his school. Gendron takes all decisions about his student body and teaching faculty as thoughtfully as this example.
Gendron loves to interact with teachers and students on a daily basis. He observes teachers in the classrooms several times a week, and makes an effort to meet with struggling students personally to discuss their choices past, present, and future. In addition to mentoring students who need some extra assistance, Gendron mentors other administrators in the district. He is very involved in the curriculum, including piloting and implementing a math program throughout the district and serving on the curriculum committee. So far, Elkhorn Middle School scores in all subjects are above average, and in 2009, 7th-grade scores in math, reading, science, and language arts were all significantly higher than the state average.
Gendron spends most of his free time studying to get his superintendent's license, a career move he wants to pursue in the future. In the meantime as he works to achieve this goal, he regularly mentors two middle school principals in the district and serves on the district's building leadership committee.
1993 University of Wisconsin - Whitewater, B.A.