Twin Ridges district fills three positions |

Twin Ridges district fills three positions

He lives in Texas, yet it’s been over a decade since Caleb Buckley has missed a chance to visit Nevada City’s Victorian Christmas.

This December, he won’t have to travel far to get there. Buckley is one of three new principals coming to schools in the North San Juan-based Twin Ridges Elementary School District. Buckley, 32, is the new principal at the Yuba River Charter School.

Buckley, who attended middle school in Camptonville and spent his freshman year at Nevada Union High School, comes to the Yuba River Charter School from Austin, Texas, where he was principal at a K-12 Waldorf school that is run in much the same way as the 200-student Yuba River Charter School.

Buckley has numerous relatives in Nevada County. “I always told my parents I’d retire here, so I’m coming home 30 years early. This is a really nice match for me,” he said Tuesday.

Buckley joins two other new leaders at the Twin Ridges district for the upcoming school year, which begins Aug.25. They are:

• Ken Burkhart, a teacher at Bemis School in the Rialto Unified School District (San Bernardino County), who will serve as lead teacher and principal at Grizzly Hill School;

• Peter Sagebiel, a former English teacher at Nevada Union High School, will serve as Twin Ridges Home Study Charter’s principal/teacher.

Stan Miller, superintendent for the Twin Ridges Elementary School District, said he is still looking to hire a permanent principal for Nevada City School of the Arts. Judi McKeehan-Reeder retired after the 2003-04 school year. A meeting is planned Monday to discuss the hiring of an interim director for the Nevada City School of the Arts.

All of the new administrators have been signed to one-year contracts, Miller said.

“I am extremely excited and pleased with the high caliber of people that have been hired,” Miller said.

The hiring of the three leaders at Twin Ridges were ratified by each school’s governance councils, with final approval given by the school district’s governing board.

Twin Ridges Home Study Charter

Focus: Home-based schooling

Teacher-in-charge: Peter Sagebiel

Grades: K-8

Number of students: 215

Grizzly Hill School

Focus: Traditional school

Principal: Ken Burkhart

Grades: K-8

Number of students: 90

Yuba River Charter School

Focus: Waldorf-based education

Principal: Caleb Buckley

Grades: K-8

Number of students: 220

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