Dr. Kelle McCallum, associate principal at Washington High School, has been named the Missouri Assistant Principal of the Year as part of the National Association of Secondary School Principals/Virco Assistant Principal of the Year Program.

“Dr. McCallum has been a valuable member of our leadership team for a long time,” said Superintendent Dr. Lori VanLeer. “She is a progressive thinker, intelligent and motivated to do what is in the best interests of our students every day.”

McCallum was selected based upon the impact she makes in providing collaborative leadership; her involvement in curriculum, instruction and assessment; and in personalizing education for students.

As the former director of guidance at WHS, McCallum knows the importance of developing positive relationships, officials said.

“In working with teachers on classroom practices, Kelle is outstanding,” said WHS Principal Frank Wood. “Her ability to quickly analyze possible issues and convey to the teacher in a collegial manner makes feedback and improvement immediate. She always puts the needs of students first and foremost. She is a great asset to our school and community.”

Student Taylor Straatmann, a senior, agrees.

“Mrs. McCallum works to make every student and teacher feel valued and inspires others to do the same,” said Straatmann. “Walking into Mrs. McCallum’s office . . . means feeling respected and encouraged.”

McCallum completed a Bachelor of Science in education in 1994 at the University of Missouri-Columbia; a Master of Arts in counseling in 2000 at Lindenwood University; and an Ed.D. in 2011 at the University of Missouri-Columbia. She joined the Washington School District in 1998 and has served as associate principal at WHS since 2008.

Under the direction of McCallum and Wood, the graduation rate at WHS has increased to 89.4 percent, 3 percent higher than the state average, with 74.9 percent of graduates attending a college or technical school.

“Being selected as the Missouri Assistant Principal of the Year is a tremendous honor,” said McCallum. “I value the relationships with the stakeholders in our district and share this honor with all our students, parents, staff and administrators. This award is a reflection of the collaborative nature of our district and the willingness to treat our students as individuals and personalize their learning,” she said.

McCallum will be honored Monday, Oct. 1, at the Missouri Association of Secondary School Principals Fall Conference in Columbia.

She and her husband Kirk have two daughters, Abby Jane and Alli Kate.