Q & A with new Silverton Middle School Principal Brett Davisson

Incoming Silverton Middle School Principal Brett Davisson was born and raised just outside of Silverton. Growing up, he attended Eugene Field, Robert Frost, Mark Twain and Silverton High School where he graduated in 1998. His family now lives in the Victor Point area. Davisson brings more than 14 years of education experience to his new role including eight years as part of the SFSD team where he served as a teacher at SHS (2006-2014), and principal of Evergreen School (2013-2014).

Currently the assistant principal for West Albany High School, Davisson earned his undergraduate degree in History from Oregon State University and Masters of Teaching Arts degree from Western Oregon University.

Davisson takes the reigns at SMS on July 1st as Nancy Griffith moves on to explore new career opportunities. Here are some of Davisson’s thoughts on education and his new role.

When/how did you know you wanted to be an educator?
I didn’t realize I wanted to be in education until the end of my freshman year in college. I had grown up in a family of teachers, but it didn’t hit me until I got to college that working in education is what I wanted to do. Working with students in a community one cares about was something I saw modeled growing up, and I wanted the same thing. It is very rewarding to see students improve and grow in who they are as people, and in their academics.

What inspired you to apply for the Silverton Middle School principal position?
The desire to come back to Silverton has always been there. There is something about coming back home that is truly special. I wanted to come to the Middle School specifically because I believe it’s one of the most critical periods of time in education. It’s the transition from elementary to high school, and it can determine a student’s success or failure. I wanted the challenge of influencing that crucial time, doing my part to contribute to their future.

What are you most looking forward to in your new role next year?
I’m really looking forward to getting to know everyone: the staff, students, parents, and community members. Forming relationships and building trust is very important for a school culture, and for continuing success.

What insights will you bring from your current position?
My time at West Albany has been wonderful. I had the opportunity to be at one of the highest performing high schools in the state, and to see how they operate. Although we had a lot of systems and programs in place that were effective, the foundation of our success was our relentless focus on building positive relationships with each student and doing whatever it takes to get them to succeed. I look forward to having the same focus at SMS.

What do you already know about SFSD and what would you like to learn more about?
From my experience as a student, as an employee, and as a parent of four kids in the district, I know that Silver Falls is a great place. Since I’ve been out of the district for the last three years, I’m sure there have been changes, so I want to get up to speed on what’s happened. But what I’m most excited to learn about is where we need to improve. In life we should always find ways to improve what we do, whether in the workplace, in the community, or at home. As a district, we should have the same focus. I look forward to bringing different ideas and creative solutions to help improve SFSD and SMS.