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Nederland community responds to Kieschnick’s promotion to superintendent

NEDERLAND — The reaction has been largely positive in greater Nederland following the school board’s decision to name Dr. Stuart Kieschnick superintendent of schools for the Nederland Independent School District.

Those in support of Kieschnick see his long reign in Nederland ISD as an asset. As a graduate of NHS, he has served as a teacher, coach, assistant principal, principal and assistant principal over the last 21 years.

Penny Mullin, a former educator, said she prefers someone experienced with the city and education in town.

“I am supportive of Dr. Kieschnick becoming superintendent because he knows this area, the schools and the needs inside and out,” she said. “He has worked his way up from teacher through administration so he is familiar with each aspect of the school system.”

Many others also praised Kieschnick’s promotion including a former NISD student who remembers his love and commitment to the agriculture department.

“Mr. Kieschnick always came to everything, even if his daughter wasn’t showing,” Nederland resident Moriah Miller said. “He supported us and always would make sure to tell us we did a good job. I remember before the shows he’d come to my barn to check on us.

“My last four years, right after we built the FFA barns, we decided to build our own to have more room. Even though we weren’t at the FFA barn, Kieschnick always came by to check on us. I only saw the ag teacher once a year, but Kieschnick came often. I’m forever thankful for him and his attitude. He is a loyal man and works hard after hours. I am thankful to have him in this position.”

Tommy Metreyeon, a former NISD athlete said, “Kieschnick was the best coach I ever had. He bleeds black and gold. Best choice ever for superintendent.”

Even Dimi Crowell, who admits to not knowing Dr. Kieschnick personally, said she is in favor of the promotion.

“He’s been present at all of the many recent board meetings, doing what superintendents are supposed to do,” she said. “Superintendents everywhere are fighting an uphill battle this school year due to COVID and trying to accommodate the community’s wants and needs while keeping students safe. It’s obvious that Dr. Kieschnick is dedicated to the students and staff within the district.

“As for how he performed as an administrator through the years, you have to remember that school administrators cannot just accommodate everyone’s wishes and desires. All decisions have to be in the best interest of the school as a whole. I’m looking forward to seeing what Dr. Kieschnick does with NISD.”

While praise for Kieschnick is high, there are voices among the fray who are disappointed with the district’s decision to not bring in an outside candidate.

NHS graduate Ryan Litchfield said hiring Kieschnick is a step back for the district.

“NISD continues to maintain a status quo that sets us back years and really needs someone not born and bred in Nederland to bring a fresh perspective to a district that refuses to confront rapidly changing demographics and to meet the needs of all students,” he said.

State law requires a 21-day waiting period before a finalist can be hired. Nederland ISD trustees plan to vote on Kieschnick’s contract at their Aug. 25 meeting.