GLEN ROSE – The new principal at Glen Rose High School, Kelly Shackelford, sat down recently to talk about his career and his start here — just nine days into the new school year.

Shackelford, 42, was born in Knox City and graduated from Gunter High School. He had served as principal of Bowie High School for five years when he was chosen in June to replace Tommy Corcoran as GRHS principal.

Shackelford’s 13 years at Bowie also included time as head baseball coach, assistant high school principal, junior high principal and administrative assistant. He began his career in Nocona as a teacher and coach before a three-year stay at Hico High School. At Hico, he was the head baseball coach and a football assistant.

Kelly and his wife, Margaret, have two children, both boys. Carter, the oldest, is a freshman at Hardin-Simmons University in Abilene, where he plans to play football and baseball. Davis, a freshman at GRHS, also is a multi-sport athlete who excels in baseball and football.

The questions and answers follow:

Q: How long have you been working in education?

A: This will be my 10th year. I was a coach for nine years.

Q: What impression has GRHS made on you so far?

A: It has a reputation of being one of the better school districts in the state. The faculty and the students have high expectations for each other, and I think the kids have high expectations of themselves as well.

Q: Do you have immediate changes in mind for GRHS?

A: I don’t want to come in and change anything. Glen Rose has been recognized as one of the top schools in the nation. I’ll see if I can make anything better. I’ll establish a culture and make sure all the policies are followed. I want to show the students as much respect as possible. And I want to hear what the teachers have to say.

Q: What do you think may be your biggest challenge as the new principal?

A: The toughest challenge for me is to learn the ropes (and find out) how things are done here. I have an idea how passionate our teachers are. I think that’s why they’ve had success here. They are really great.

Q: When did you decide you wanted to get into coaching and teaching, and why?

A: I always knew I wanted to be a teacher and coach. I knew that as far back as I can remember. (The reason was) my dad (the late Gene Shackelford) was a football coach and a basketball coach, then he got into administration. He was the principal at Alvord, and retired as superintendent at Gorman.

Q: What was it about your father that inspired you to get into education?

A: The way he interacted with the kids and the other educators. You just wanted to be like that. He made the kids feel good by simply being there and taking interest in them. My mom (Marsha, who resides in Brownwood) tells me we’re exactly alike. All of our relatives say the same thing.

Q: Are there some major changes in public education you would like to see made by the state legislature?

A: I agree with all the accountability (testing) part. I do think we need standardized tests, as far as a measuring stick. But I don’t think a kid should get a diploma solely on whether they pass a standardized test. Where the rubber meets the road is in the classroom, and I think that’s why Glen Rose has been successful.

Q: What is the most satisfying aspect of working with students?

A: I like seeing kids figure it out. After you have given the kids just enough (to get their interest); when they put their thought into action. (Also) seeing them applying what they’ve learned and seeing their hard work and dedication paying off.

GLEN ROSE – The new principal at Glen Rose High School, Kelly Shackelford, sat down recently to talk about his career and his start here — just nine days into the new school year.

Shackelford, 42, was born in Knox City and graduated from Gunter High School. He had served as principal of Bowie High School for five years when he was chosen in June to replace Tommy Corcoran as GRHS principal.

Shackelford’s 13 years at Bowie also included time as head baseball coach, assistant high school principal, junior high principal and administrative assistant. He began his career in Nocona as a teacher and coach before a three-year stay at Hico High School. At Hico, he was the head baseball coach and a football assistant.

Kelly and his wife, Margaret, have two children, both boys. Carter, the oldest, is a freshman at Hardin-Simmons University in Abilene, where he plans to play football and baseball. Davis, a freshman at GRHS, also is a multi-sport athlete who excels in baseball and football.

Questions and answers to follow:

Q: How long have you been working in education?

A: This will be my 10th year. I was a coach for nine years.

Q: What impression has GRHS made on you so far?

A: It has a reputation of being one of the better school districts in the state. The faculty and the students have high expectations for each other, and I think the kids have high expectations of themselves as well.

Q: Do you have immediate changes in mind for GRHS?

A: I don’t want to come in and change anything. Glen Rose has been recognized as one of the top schools in the nation. I’ll see if I can make anything better. I’ll establish a culture and make sure all the policies are followed. I want to show the students as much respect as possible. And I want to hear what the teachers have to say.

Q: What do you think may be your biggest challenge as the new principal?

A: The toughest challenge for me is to learn the ropes (and find out) how things are done here. I have an idea how passionate our teachers are. I think that’s why they’ve had success here. They are really great.

Q: When did you decide you wanted to get into coaching and teaching, and why?

A: I always knew I wanted to be a teacher and coach. I knew that as far back as I can remember. (The reason was) my dad (the late Gene Shackelford) was a football coach and a basketball coach, then he got into administration. He was the principal at Alvord, and retired as superintendent at Gorman.

Q: What was it about your father that inspired you to get into education?

A: The way he interacted with the kids and the other educators. You just wanted to be like that. He made the kids feel good by simply being there and taking interest in them. My mom (Marsha, who resides in Brownwood) tells me we’re exactly alike. All of our relatives say the same thing.

Q: Are there some major changes in public education you would like to see made by the state legislature?

A: I agree with all the accountability (testing) part. I do think we need standardized tests, as far as a measuring stick. But I don’t think a kid should get a diploma solely on whether they pass a standardized test. Where the rubber meets the road is in the classroom, and I think that’s why Glen Rose has been successful.

Q: What is the most satisfying aspect of working with students?

A: like seeing kids figure it out. After you have given the kids just enough (to get their interest); when they put their thought into action. (Also) seeing them applying what they’ve learned and seeing their hard work and dedication paying off.