Silver Crest Elementary School is full of positive energy

If you ask principal Mark Hannan to tell you about Silver Crest Elementary School, he is unable to hide his enthusiasm. He’ll tell you it’s the students, staff, families and community that make this small K-8 school so special.

“The students and staff are amazing and the Silver Crest community has been so supportive.”

He points to the school’s lush new field that was made possible by the parent booster club as well as community and business leaders including local vineyard farmer Ken Johnston who did much of the groundwork on the field, and Jan and Jason Hupp from Drakes Crossing Nursery who supplied the pipe and water for irrigation.  Other movers and shakers included Wilco, Ioka Farms, Dan Stadeli, Mike Charpilloz from Premier Ag, and the district’s own Ron Duda and Shawn Pool.

“It was a true team effort and whenever something was needed, this group found someone to help and provide the funding to make it happen,” said Hannan.

Hannan moved from Silverton High School to lead Silver Crest K-8 in September. From 1,250 teens in town to 142 younger kids in a rural community, the change was a big one.  In addition, Hannan took on leadership of the district’s special programs including ELL, nursing services and homeless student support. With a full plate and a new school community, Hannan came to his new role with an open mind and heart.

With a blend of seasoned Silver Crest teachers and new teachers, Hannan says he benefits from the best of both worlds.

“I get the larger school district perspective from the new teachers and the institutional knowledge from those who know our kids and community so well. It’s made my transition so much easier,” Hannan said.

According to kindergarten teacher Christine Guenther, bringing Hannan to Silver Crest was a good call.

“He’s rockin’ it,” said Guenther, who shared team comments about Hannan’s ability to make individual connections with students and staff; his great listening and organization skills; and his timely feedback and encouragement.

“He has made an incredible difference at Silver Crest and the staff is so thankful to have him as principal,” Guenther said.

Hannan, who trained as a middle school science teacher is especially looking forward to expanding Silver Crest’s science program to provide more hands-on learning.

“At the high school, we saw kids coming in with such varying degrees of science experience.  I think we can do more to level the playing field,” said Hannan who added that there will be a new science lab at the school next year.