The districtwide Issaquah PTSA Council announced last week that Executive Director of Elementary and Middle Schools Ron Thiele is this year’s Outstanding Educator.
Thiele did not find out he had won until the PTSA luncheon on Thursday.
“I was surprised and honored,” Thiele said. “It felt wonderful.”
Thiele was recognized for his work in expanding the middle school experience, said Nancy Campi, Co-President of the Issaquah PTSA Council.
“He really gave the project the legs it needed to become something,” Campi said.
The PTSA came to the district with the goal of initiating discussions with the district about the middle school culture. Thanks in part to Thiele, the district and the PTSA not only discussed what could be done to improve the middle school years, but also conducted a survey that will be released soon. A full committee will be devoted to the question this fall.
“His job is very big and time consuming, but he always finds time to talk to parents and the PTAs,” Campi said.
Thiele credits the strong relationship to the similar goals he shares with members of the PTA.
“I have always valued our partnership,” Thiele said. “They bring a lot to the table. We both have the same underlying values and common beliefs. I have enjoyed working together.”
Thiele has worked for the Issaquah School District for seven years. He was previously the principal at Issaquah Middle School, where he also won the Outstanding Educator Award for his efforts.
Now Thiele supervises all middle and elementary school principals as well as all educational programs in those schools, with the exception of Special Education programs.
As he puts it to his kids, he’s now “principal of the principals.”