February 12, 2016

USD 231 may seek candidates for GEHS assistant principal

The school year is in full swing, but at least one staff position hangs in the balance at USD 231.
School board members approved John Duncanson to replace outgoing Gardner Edgerton High School Assistant Principal Mark Meyer last month. Duncanson’s promotion is contingent on licensing requirements in the state of Kansas. He has been given a long-term substitute contract until those requirements are met.
Duncanson taught health and physical education at GEHS. David Diener replaced him in that role.
In the meantime, the district is considering other candidates for the Assistant Principal job.


  1. Judith Rogers says:

    Would prefer that leadership roles in our school district be filled by persons with strong academics background rather than a sports background. But my rathers seem to be in the minority compared to what Gilhaus, the School Board and most of the families in this area want. The U.S. standing with respect to worldwide rankings on education continue to decline and I believe much of that is due to the priorities that parents and educators are making. Myself I don’t think a sports education is going to benefit our youth and our country – parents should be thinking long and hard as to what they are supporting and enabling, especially with respect for the long term good of their children – that is my opinion. I sure hate to see my tax dollars going for the out of whack educational system I am seeing more and more and I will speak out about it just as I have done and will continue to do so as long it is necessary and I will continue to vote AGAINST bond issues when this type of leadership and education is being sold. Poor choices get you poor results and I truly think that our country’s security is being placed in jeopardy by the downward trend with respect to education. Not to my liking when I hear the sounds of taxpayer money being blown up in the air many Friday evenings in the fall at 7:00 P.M. as the “gladiators” enter the field – I would much rather hear the quiet of microscopes and research and study on many, many subjects and respect for your fellow man being shown rather than the heads butting and the bones being broken while the asinine spectators scream for more of that behaviror and, of course, for VICTORY……..victory which is short lived – not like a good education that will serve you well your whole life and will give you a basis for even greater things in life such as being able to obtain employment and keep that employment as you continue to educate yourself through the years as things changed – if you don’t value education as a youth, I believe your chances of doing so in adulthood is lessened. The choice is yours as it always is. Blow up those dollars (in many ways) that should be going for education and see what the long term affects will be for you.

  2. I got caught sleeping on this article. Let’s connect the Diener Dots, some rumor, some fact. Dot #1. FACT: Marvin Diener was hired as football coach 5 years ago. Dot #2 FACT: His wife Lessie was hired as aerobics teacher at the same time. Dot # 3 RUMOR: Diener was promised artificial turf when he was hired. Dot #4: RUMOR: Diener promised his football team that he would get them artificial turf within 3 years. Dot #5: RUMOR: Coach Diener threatened to leave if he did not get artificial turf. Dot #6: FACT: In 2011 Proposed bond issue, included of all things, gotta have it, artificial turf. Dot #7: FACT: Bill Miller: Director of Operations resigned in the middle of the 2010-2011 school year. DOT #8: RUMOR: He was forced out. Dot #9 FACT: Cousin Gary Diener, was hired to replace Miller in time to work on getting a bond issue passed that included artificial turf. DOT #10 FACT: In 2011, Son David Diener was hired to teach PE at Wheatridge Middle school and as assistant GEHS football coach. Dot #11: FACT: In a fairly close contested race the Bond issue is passed; Coach Diener gets his artificial turf and Multipurpose Activities Center at GEHS. Dot #12: FACT: Duncanson, who taught Health at GEHS and had masters in administration, but not certified (had not passed the test) is picked to replace the outgoing Mark Meyer as assistant principal at GEHS. Dot #13: FACT: With a vacancy in the PE and Health department, David Diener is moved to GEHS to teach health. QUESTION: Did he get a raise in pay to move from middle school to high school? Dot 14: FACT: Duncanson did not pass the test and NOW the District is possibly looking at other candidates. Dot 15: RUMOR: Other qualified candidates for the position applied but were not interviewed before Duncanson was hired.

    In the “could it be related?” category:

    FACT: USD 231 is found to be about $3M in the hole and their bond rating goes down

    FACT: The Director of the business (Finance and Budget) office resigns, again in the middle of the last school year. RUMOR: There was significant unaccounted for expenditures found during the audit and he was used as scapegoat and forced to resign.

    Meanwhile back at the USD 231 Ranch, administration and school board are singing the blues about the Big Bad legislature not giving them enough money and class sizes have increased, and rumor has it para and other supporting staff positions were cut.

    OPINION: When the dots are connected the picture revealed shows that USD 231 has given the Diener Family the Keys to the Kingdom and our kids and their teachers are paying for it.

    FACT: There was a GEHS science position vacated right at the beginning of the school year.

    QUESTION: Are there any other Dieners they can pull out of the woodwork that are certified to teach science?

  3. Judith Rogers says:

    Reminds you of the Dictator’s appointed Council, cronyism government and much, much more…..it is just not the kids and the teachers paying the price………the citizens are paying TOP DOLLAR for all of the manipulation and conniving, however, many of the parents are playing along with all of the wheeling and dealing, both at the school district level as well as the city level…….most of the time you get the government you deserve…………..I am sure the expanded stadium will be filled next Friday evening and Diener and Family will be smiling as taxpayer money is burned up as the game begins………who is to blame the most??? The School Board, Diener, Gilhaus or all of the parents who enable and support their sports education?????? Expensive to live in Gardner with one of the highest city mill levies in the County and one of the highest school mill levies in the STATE………can’t figure out how we have over 50% of the kids eligible to free lunches and yet the parents can afford to pay high taxes of this kind and I sure can’t figure out how so many of these families have made their priority choices…………hope all enjoy living in the freight district in the near future and that one is really going to hit your wallet while you live in a hellhole……….whatever – the choice is yours and certainly not mine.

  4. The Mill Levy could have been lower, but we don’t have the business tax base. We gave up multiple opportunities including the Speedway and all those businesses that came with it.

  5. There are many studies that show why athletics (as well as other extra-curricular activities) are important to students. There is a great article titled ‘Why Hire a Student Athlete by Kelly from the Game Theory Group (the article links to the actual study if you want to look at all of the data included in the 31 page report). http://gametheorygroup.com/2012/03/hire-student-athlete/

    Why Hire a Student-Athlete?
    by Kelly on MARCH 26, 2012 in COACH’S CORNER
    “Currently there is a lot of buzz in the world of collegiate athletics. A recent study was published discrediting the “Dumb Jock” stereotype. This study, University Learning Outcomes Assessment (http://www.measuringbehaviors.com/#!prettyPhoto), was completed by two professors from Indiana State University and compared regular students to the student-athlete population.

    The findings brought forth the results that student-athletes, in comparison with the regular student population, learn and grow faster during their collegiate experience…not by a little, but by twice the rate.

    In the study, seven factors were analyzed: critical thinking, self-awareness, communication, diversity, citizenship, membership, leadership, and relationship building. These factors are related to skills believed to be needed to succeed after college and in a career.

    Interestingly enough, many individuals could not believe these findings. The public could not understand how student-athletes could actually be performing better than students that are at college to simply study.

    What do student-athletes learn during their collegiate years by participating on and off the court?

    Respect…to their teammates, coaching staff, fans, etc.
    Discipline…to get up for early morning workouts, before 8am classes even begin
    Determination…to succeed physically, academically, emotionally
    Commitment…to their sport, themselves, their team, and their school
    Resilience…to succeed regardless of injuries, deadlines, and even failed performances
    Not to mention…Dealing with Adversity, Time Management, Communication…
    There is a commercial that is sponsored by the NCAA and played during collegiate events…especially right now during March Madness. At the end it always states, “there are about 400,000 NCAA student-athletes…just about all of us will be going pro in something other than sports.”

    The findings from the UniLOA study, combined with this statement, would make me hopeful as an employer. Student-athletes represent a portion of the labor force that will make any organization successful…regardless of the economic times.”

    Although this article (and study) concentrates on collegiate athletics, you can’t get there without high school athletics. These same principles apply to the high school level too, as well as to other extra-curricular activities as well (band, drama, etc.) in my opinion.

  6. Judith Rogers says:

    Oh, yes, those businesses who pay their taxes……….you mean those 22 business owners along Main St. Gardner who some don’t even pay 25% of their taxes or perhaps you are talking about entities like Gardner Bank, builders, developers, investors, etc. who get their “farm” appraisals resulting in maybe $5 a year property tax bills or perhaps all of the business entities, especially the LLCs who now don’t have to pay state income taxes due to King Brownback, who are on the delinquent property tax list that was printed last Saturday and again today in the Star or perhaps those jaybirds who have not paid their taxes and/or assessments for the benefit districts the citizens bankrolled for them…………oh, yes, I really need those bloodsuckers and many more like them………….those rotten politicians and bureaucrats sure aren’t governing for the average citizen in my opinion and haven’t for years and why your middle class will soon be an endangered species………….oh, yeah, I need that business tax base like a hole in the head considering what I have seen and had to carry their tax burden since they sure don’t want to have one………vote for dear ole Romney and you will have those jaybirds giving you a tax bill that will be astronomical since they will expect you to take care of them and in royal style…………just like Romney’s $100 MILLION IRA account…………no regulation and no oversight and no taxes is what every rich Republican wants and the little guy is dying on the vine in the process and every woman will be told what she is do and when and they want to program her accordingly…………there definitely is an American Taliban and it has a GOP label to it it appears………..so many things never REALLY change due to the sins of mankind which will always be with us………

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