BELTON — During a regularly scheduled meeting Monday night, the Belton Independent School District board of trustees unanimously approved three new principals and one assistant superintendent — each being promoted from within district ranks.
Deanna Lovesmith was approved as assistant superintendent of curriculum and instruction.
“We are just excited about her,” Superintendent Susan Kincannon said at the meeting. “She is enthusiastic. She is a strong leader, and I love her can-do attitude.”
Lovesmith received both her bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Baylor University, and her doctorate in education and education administration from Texas A&M University. Lovesmith had been the principal of Belton New Tech High School @ Waskow since its creation three years ago. Before that, Lovesmith was a director of special projects and curriculum, counselor and teacher in school districts in the Waco area.
The assistant superintendent of curriculum and instruction position previously was held by Ed Braeuer until his unexpected death in June.
“I just felt it was important I should share my initial feeling when you texted me and told me of her recommendation,” board trustee Amanda Winkler said. “I felt Ed was shining down. I just know that this would have been his choice of a candidate.”
Replacing Lovesmith at New Tech will be Jill Ross, former director of special education for Belton ISD. Ross has a bachelor’s degree from Midwestern State University and a master of education administration from Texas Tech University. Ten of her 17 years in education have been spent in Belton ISD.
“She has all the right knowledge to take to the New Tech campus with her,” Kincannon said. “She is student-centered, a brilliant advocate for students and she is well-respected in this district.”
Kristopher Hobson was approved as principal of Lake Belton Middle School where he will replace Suzy McKinney. For the last three years, Hobson worked as assistant principal of the middle school.
“He wanted to get on campus with the dream of becoming a principal, and he took an assistant principal’s job to get there,” Kincannon said.
Hobson has a bachelor’s degree and master’s degree from Texas A&M and principal certification from Tarleton State University.
“What a great opportunity, and the staff is so pleased and excited,” Randy Pittenger, board president, said.
Keonna White will replace Tammy Becker as principal of South Belton Middle School.
“Keonna blew the interview committee away,” Kincannon said. “She is the top candidate for the job. She has the support and the heart of teachers on that campus.”
White has worked for two years as assistant principal of the school. White has a bachelor’s degree from the University of Southern Mississippi and a master’s degree in education administration from Tarleton.
The board of trustees also approved Sandra Garrett as assistant principal of Belton High School and Sheila Surovik as assistant principal of Belton Early Childhood School.
Trustees also approved 51 new employees for positions as teachers, paraprofessionals, librarians and school nurses.
Todd Schiller, Belton director of human resources, said 20 percent of the newly approved educators were graduates of the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor. Five of the new educators were Belton High School graduates.