New Knox principal named

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, July 31, 2012

By Sarah Campbell
EAST SPENCER — A familiar face will take over the top spot at Knox Middle School.
Terrence Snider, the school’s assistant principal, will be the school’s next leader, the Rowan-Salisbury Board of Education voted Monday. The decision came just one day before principal Dr. James Davis’ last day at Knox.
School board member Bryce Beard said Snider was the top choice for the role among a committee made up of a himself, parent Krista Woolly, a teacher and district administrators.
“I think there was a real priority there to continue the good things that are going on at Knox and have somebody that’s invested in the school,” he said. “He’s been there five years, he’s well liked by the community and he had the support of the people on the committee.
“I think for Mr. Snider this is an opportunity in a place that he calls home.”
Snider started working at the school in August 2007 as a curriculum coach. He was promoted to assistant principal the following year.
Before his tenure at Knox, Snider taught English at Salisbury High for two years and eighth-grade language arts at North Rowan Middle for five years.
He was named North’s teacher of the year in 2004-05 and went on to become the runner up for the district honor.
Snider began his career as an exceptional children’s teaching assistant at Cainhoy Elementary High School in Huger, S.C. before moving on to become a distance learning lab facilitator and teacher assistant to Berkeley County Alternative School in Moncks Corner, S.C.
Snider said his diverse background gives him an advantage that will allow him to help students transition from elementary to middle school and then middle to high school with ease.
“Together we can, together we will” is Snider’s mission statement as he prepares to take over.
“That’s everyone,” he said. “That’s the school as well as the community, the central office, all stakeholders.”
Snider said everyone working together can help him accomplish his vision for Knox.
“I’d like Knox to be, of course, a safe school, a 21st-century, globally competitive, professional learning community,” he said. “Meeting the needs of all students and acknowledging that we do have a highly-diverse student population.”
Snider said the biggest challenge facing Knox right now is lack of community and parental involvement.
But he’s hoping to change that by getting out and talking to people.
“One thing I’d like to do is visit some of the churches in the area, share my vision for the school and talk about how they can be involved,” he said.
Snider, who has a master’s degree in English education from the Citadel Military College of South Carolina and a post master’s in adminstration from Garner-Webb University, will become the fourth principal at Knox in five years.
Davis, who resigned in May after less than a year at the school, is leaving to become the principal of Winecoff Elementary School in Cabarrus County.
Snider said he’s got the staying power that’s needed at the school.
“I really love the population at Knox,” he said. “I’ve been there for five years and I see there is a great need for the students and my heart goes out to them.”
Beard said there were a lot of good candidates for the job, but Snider stood out.
“I think what we saw in him was a passion for the school,” he said. “He sees this as a challenge and doesn’t want to fail.
“It’s a goal for him rather than a stepping stone and we’ve had that happen a couple of times.”
Contact reporter Sarah Campbell at 704-797-7683.