NRHEG job serves as homecoming opportunity for new high school principal - Blooming MN: Blooming Prairie Leader

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NRHEG job serves as homecoming opportunity for new high school principal

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Posted: Wednesday, March 27, 2013 5:00 pm | Updated: 1:15 pm, Fri Mar 29, 2013.

NEW RICHLAND — For David Bunn, seeking the job as the high school principal for the New Richland-Hartland-Ellendale-Geneva school district was a little different from other job searches.

For him, it was the chance to come home.

Bunn, who graduated from NRHEG in 1992, was in New Richland on Monday night to see his contract from the beginning of the 2013-2014 school year through the end of the 2014-2015 school year approved by a unanimous vote from the NRHEG school board.

The area that the school district serves is filled with memories for Bunn and his family.

“My wife and I are graduates from NRHEG,” Bunn said. “For the first 15 years of my life, I grew up between Ellendale and New Richland, just off of Highway 30 on a farm. We moved into Ellendale after that, I think I was about 15.”

Bunn’s wife, Jennie, graduated from NRHEG in 1991 and her parents live about six miles west of New Richland, he said.

Bunn’s contract approval on Monday night was the culmination of an effort that began after current high school principal Paul Cyr announced his retirement. His resignation was approved by the school board on Jan. 22 and will be effective June 30. Superintendent Kevin Wellen said the search for a new principal to replace Cyr began immediately.

“We posted the position the next day, and it was posted for 30 days, which we do for everything,” Wellen said. “We got 30 applications in, which we were very pleased with a lot of the options that we had there. I met with staff to talk about what we were looking for in a principal, what we had that we wanted to make certain we maintained.”

Of the 30 applicants, five were selected to be interviewed by an 11-person selection committee comprised of representatives from New Richland, Ellendale, the school board and the administration. Two candidates were given a second interview, and Bunn was awarded the position.

“David was clearly the best candidate out of the pool,” Wellen said.

Part of the reason for Bunn’s selection was his previous work in core areas identified by the search committee. At his current position as principal of Prescott High School in Prescott, Wis., Bunn has worked to focus on Response to Intervention to help identify students who are struggling. He also focused on the Positive Behavioral Intervention System, a tool used in schools across the country to help identify behaviors in students.

Apart from that, Bunn launched the use of iPads and integrated more technology in the Prescott school district. The system began with iPads being tested with the administration. Prescott’s elementary teachers also have been given iPads and the district is in the process of adding more to student centers.

“He has a lot of experience in the areas that we are pursuing,” Wellen said.

Bunn said he is excited about the direction the district is heading in, and that the current initiatives are exciting for him, such as the RTI, PBIS and iPad initiatives currently being used in the district.

In the end, Bunn said his new position is a great opportunity to be closer to his family in the area, bringing he, his wife and their three children, Payton, Parker and Sofia, closer to loved ones in southern Minnesota.

“This is truly coming home for us,” Bunn said. “I think it’s very exciting to be the principal of the school that helped mold you. I think that’s a pretty unique and wonderful opportunity.”

Reach reporter Al Strain at 444-2376 or follow him on

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