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Wright leaves Plainwell High School

Jeremy Wright is seen with his daughter Kaylee during her graduation from Plainwell High School. (Photo provided)

By Jason Wesseldyk
Sports Editor

After serving nearly a decade-and-a-half as principal at Plainwell High School, Jeremy Wright is ready for his next challenge.
Wright was recently named as the new superintendent of Delton Kellogg Public Schools. He officially began his tenure there on Monday, July 1.
According to Wright, the decision to leave Plainwell Community Schools was anything but easy.
“It was extremely difficult,” said Wright, who takes over in Delton for former superintendent Herman Lartigue, Jr. “I was on the fence of even applying to Delton, as (son) Jacob and (daughter) Bridgett are both juniors.”
This isn’t the first time Wright made a run at the superintendent position at Delton Kellogg. He was a finalist a few years ago when Lartigue, Jr. ultimately was chosen.
“I’d applied before at Delton and was a finalist in the past and didn’t get the job,” Wright said. “So, I wanted to demonstrate that you should never give up. I know that I can help Delton and bring stability to the position, and that is why I applied. 
“We are committed to living in this area, and these opportunities don’t happen often. So, I had to jump on it.”
Wright, who graduated from Warren Mott High School on the state’s east side, received his bachelor’s degree from Adrian College in French and public relations. He then headed south, securing a master’s degree in education from Florida Atlantic University before earning his doctorate in curriculum and instruction from FAU.
He spent the first decade of his career in education in Florida, first as a teacher and then as an assistant principal. Then he moved back to Michigan to take over as principal at PHS, a role he held for 14.5 years.
“I love Plainwell Schools,” Wright said. “We moved from Florida because of the small-town feel and the proximity to Kalamazoo and Grand Rapids.  We also wanted to be back in Michigan because both of our families lived here and we wanted our kids to have a strong education.”
In addition to Jacob and Bridgett, Wright shares daughter Kaylee, 20, with wife Jennifer, who teaches first grade at PCS’s Starr Elementary.
“I think that PHS is special because of the people,” Wright said. “We have a staff that is so committed to excellence, and it shows in everything we do.  The teachers are driven to be the best around and it showed.”
Evidence of that commitment to excellence can be seen in the fact that PHS was recently named the top public high school in the Kalamazoo area in U.S. News and World Report’s annual ranking. PHS ranked 57th in Michigan overall.
“There’s a lot of things that I’m proud of during my time at PHS, and being ranked first in the greater Kalamazoo area for Best High Schools is one of those things,” Wright said.
“I’m also proud of the way we have become such a cohesive team over the past 14 years and of the great relationships I’ve made at Plainwell.”
Wright hopes to bring that same sense of cohesion to a Delton Kellogg district that has faced challenges recently in terms of continuity of leadership and declining enrollment numbers.
“Delton is in need of leadership and stability,” he said. “There has been quite a bit of turnover and a loss of students and staff. I feel like I can help bring Delton together and be the best school system that it can be. A big focus will be hiring qualified staff for the positions we have.”
In a letter to the “Delton Kellogg Schools Community” on July 1, Wright wrote:
“I am honored and humbled to be the next leader of the Delton Kellogg School District. It is clear to me that Delton Kellogg Schools is a special place. The community is passionate about the district and education.
“Moving forward, I will be active in the great community and schools. I plan on attending games, concerts, etc. I also plan on building upon past practices and improving current structures. My goal for the first several months is to get to know the community and schools and develop relationships with the key stakeholders. I am committed to having an open-door policy and will encourage dialogue.”
Wright also had a message for the Plainwell community.
“I would like to thank everyone for their patience over the years,” he said. “Coming in as a 33 year-old principal was a great learning experience and I feel like we were able to accomplish great things. I have truly appreciated getting to know the kids of PHS and can’t say enough good things about our community.”
And even though Wright is no longer employed by PCS, he won’t be a stranger around Plainwell.
“I will be around PHS a lot for the next two years at least watching Jacob play football on Friday nights and other activities my kids are in,” he said.

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