ER9 Appoints New Principal and Two New Assistant Principals

Dr. Jason McKinnon, superintendent of the Easton, Redding, and Region 9 Public Schools, has announced the appointment of new leaders at John Read Middle School and Joel Barlow High School.

The Redding Board of Education on July 7 unanimously appointed Jennifer Desmarais as principal of John Read Middle School. Desmarais started her career at  Read school as a social studies teacher in 1989. She remained in that position until 1999 when she accepted a position as social studies teacher at Barlow.

During her career at Barlow, she became Humanities Department Chair in 2011 and then assistant principal in 2016. Her appointment at Read brings stability and familiarity at a time when both senior administrative positions were open. One of Desmarais’ first responsibilities is to help the district select a new assistant principal to fill the position vacated by Darlene Wallin’s retirement in June. It is anticipated that a new assistant principal for Read will be appointed this summer. 

Jason Schemm

The Region 9 Board of Education on June 13 unanimously appointed Jason (J.T.) Schemm as assistant principal effective July 1. Schemm has been employed at Barlow since 2012 as a science teacher and became the STEM and business department chair in 2016. For half of the most recent school year, he filled in as interim assistant principal. 

The Region 9 Board on July 12 unanimously appointed Dameon Kellogg as assistant principal at Barlow, filling the vacancy created by Desmarais’ move to Read. Kellogg has spent the past seven years at Amity Regional High School as the mathematics department chair. He served on the District’s STEAM committee as co-chair and on the NEASC committee. 

“Mr. Kellogg is certified in mathematics and social studies which makes him uniquely qualified to collaborate and lead across departments,” McKinnon said. “He displayed strong leadership qualities from the school setting and his experience in the United States Air Force and National Guard.” Kellogg will officially start on Monday, July 18. 

McKinnon stated: “The appointment of Mr. Kellogg tonight was an important piece to fall into place for our leadership team. Our teachers in ER9 are of the highest caliber and our school leadership reflects this quality.” Kellogg joins the high school leadership team under assistant superintendent/head of school Dr. Mario Almeida. 

Dameon Kellogg

“The new leadership team at Barlow is looking forward to beginning the important work over the summer to prepare our school and programs for Barlow students in the fall,” Almeida said. “At the same time, we wish Ms. Desmarais well in her new position.”

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