FREDERICKTOWN — At its regular April meeting held Tuesday evening, the Fredericktown Board of Education unanimously approved the hiring of James Peterson as the district’s superintendent. Peterson will replace retiring superintendent Dan Humphrey.
Peterson was awarded a three-year contract; his employment will be effective Aug. 1.
Peterson comes to the Fredericktown district from Delaware City Schools, where he serves as principal of Delaware Hayes High School. He has held this position for the past 13 years. Before that, he was an assistant principal at Hayes.
Peterson attended St. Vincent de Paul School, and graduated from Mount Vernon High School. His undergraduate work was at Youngstown State University, and he finished his master’s degree in school administration at the University of Dayton. He earned superintendent credentials at Ashland University.
Peterson started his teaching and coaching career at Warren St. Mary, later going to Canton Central Catholic. He moved to Marion Catholic as principal in 1988 and subsequently served as principal at Bishop Hartley High School.
When asked, “Why Fredericktown?” Peterson responded, “I am a small-town person, born and raised in Mount Vernon. I am interested in coming to Fredericktown schools because of the close-knit community it offers. I am attracted to the beauty and history of the area, as well as to the people who make up the district and community. I am also drawn to the tradition of academic excellence in the Fredericktown schools.”
Art Dremann, board president, said the board is looking forward to Peterson’s leadership in the coming years.
“Mr. Peterson brings to the district his experiences of working with 1,300 students, 121 staff members and a building budget of $8.6 million. This comes close to mirroring our entire district,” he explained. “More important, the board learned in the interviewing process that Peterson’s philosophy of education parallels Fredericktown’s with his emphasis on professional learning communities and William Daggett’s ‘rigor, relevance and relationships.’ He has moved Hayes from academic watch to a state rating of excellent, so he knows the importance of academic achievement.”
Peterson said he plans to move into the district and become active in civic organizations and community activities. Peterson and his wife, Mary Anne Arnold Peterson, live in the Marion area and have three grown sons, James and twins Jason and Justin.