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Argyle board names leaders

Profile image for By Britney Tabor / Staff Writer
By Britney Tabor / Staff Writer

Hartman, Pels to serve as principals at schools

Argyle school board members this week named Lisa Hartman as principal of Argyle Intermediate School and Mandi Pels as principal of Hilltop Elementary School.

Board members approved the motions 7-0 at a special meeting Wednesday.

Hartman, an instructional supervisor with Effingham County Schools in Georgia, replaces Kim Barker, hired by the district in May to lead Hilltop Elementary.

Barker tendered her resignation June 26, prior to her first day of work, Superintendent Telena Wright said.

In an e-mail to Wright, Barker cited the “impending closure” of the intermediate school and that she had accepted a position in another school district as reasons for her resignation.

Officials with the Northwest school district confirmed this week that Barker has accepted a position as an associate principal at Northwest High School in Justin.

Wright said this week that there is no plan or proposal to close the intermediate school.

In March, the school board considered closing the intermediate school to cut expenses, but nothing came of that discussion.

Hartman’s educational career spans more than 20 years.

She has a bachelor’s degree in elementary education from East Texas State University, which is now Texas A&M University at Commerce, and a master’s degree in education administration from A&M-Commerce, Wright said.

Throughout her career, Hartman has served as an intermediate and middle school principal in Oklahoma and an elementary principal in the North Lamar school district based in Paris, Wright said.

According to the Springfield Elementary School website in Springfield, Ga., Hartman writes that she has also served as a third-grade and fourth-grade teacher and a high school assistant principal.

“She brings a wealth of administrative experience to this position,” Wright said, adding that Hartman’s administrative experience and professionalism made her the best candidate for the job.

Hartman could not be reached for comment.

Pels, an assistant principal at Hilltop Elementary, replaces Lisa Lyles.

Lyles, who was with the district six years, submitted her resignation in May, effective at the end of her 2011-12 contract. In her resignation letter, she told district officials she had accepted a position near family. The Pasadena school district named Lyles an assistant elementary principal in May.

Wright said Pels is familiar with the needs of that campus and described her as a strong leader with exceptional communication skills.

“Mandi is committed to providing the best instructional arrangement for students, making sure each student is viewed as an individual learner and making sure the program that student is in is specific to their individual needs,” Wright said.

Prior to joining the Hilltop Elementary staff, Pels was an Argyle coach and middle school teacher. She has a bachelor’s degree in exercise physiology from Texas Woman’s University, a master’s degree in school administration from Lamar University and a superintendent certificate from the Region 11 Education Service Center. Before arriving in Argyle, Pels served as a teacher, coach and youth leader in the Austin area.

Pels could not be reached for comment.

BRITNEY TABOR can be reached at 940-566-6876. Her e-mail address is .