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Jefferson City School District Announces Dr. Deanne Fisher as New Principal of Jefferson City High School

Dr. Fisher, a 1990 JCHS graduate, will be the first-ever female head principal in the school’s history

JEFFERSON CITY – Jefferson City School District today announced that Dr. Deanne Fisher has been hired as the principal of Jefferson City High School. Dr. Fisher, who graduated from Jefferson City High School in 1990, will be the first-ever female head principal in the school’s history. She is succeeding Principal Bob James, who has led JCHS for the past seven years and will become the superintendent at Osage County R-II in Linn on July 1, 2022. 

Dr. Fisher has been the principal of Lewis & Clark Middle School since 2018. As the middle school’s leader, she has been responsible for supervising 100 staff members and 950 students, leading curriculum and instruction planning, increasing iReady reading and math scores, and implementing the school’s BASE program, which is a specialized classroom designed to support students with disabilities who have significant social, emotional, and behavioral needs.

“Dr. Deanne Fisher has been an incredible asset for JC Schools, serving her students and fellow educators with an unrelenting energy, passion, and commitment for more than two decades,” said JC Schools Assistant Superintendent of Secondary Education Gary Verslues. “Throughout her years of experience, Deanne has proven time and time again that she’s a fiercely dedicated and driven educator who does whatever she can to help others succeed. I could not be more proud to see Deanne Fisher, an accomplished educator in our community, take the helm of Jefferson City High School.” 

“The JCHS principal position requires a strong instructional leader who has the drive to develop a top-notch school, retain quality staff, and support a mission and vision in which all students can find success,” said Dr. Deanne Fisher, principal of Lewis & Clark Middle School and upcoming Jefferson City High School principal. “It also requires compassion, perseverance, and hard work in order to establish and sustain an environment of effective communication and trust. Perhaps most importantly, it requires a dedicated leader committed to making Jefferson City High School the best high school in the state of Missouri. My experience and background have prepared me for the challenges this position presents, and I am ready to take on those challenges.”

Before taking the lead at Lewis & Clark, Dr. Fisher developed and implemented the district’s first alternative school, Jefferson City Academic Center (JCAC), in 2006 to serve students who need differentiated classroom instruction to help them graduate from high school. During her tenure leading JCAC, more than 1,000 students earned their high school diplomas and over 250 have graduated since her departure. 

While Dr. Fisher was the JCAC principal, the school was also recognized as the first alternative school in Missouri to be named as a state and national school of character. At JCAC, Dr. Fisher developed an after-school program and middle school program to serve more students. She also led curriculum and instruction, the school suspension program for grades 6-12, 27 staff members, and 150 students.

Dr. Fisher started her educational career in 1996 as a teacher in the Cole R-V School District, teaching seventh and eighth grade social studies and ninth grade American Government. 

The next year, she joined JC Schools as the Fresh Start and credit recovery teacher at the Simonsen Ninth Grade Center, supporting at-risk students by helping them gain the necessary skills to not only be successful in the classroom but also in life. In the role, Dr. Fisher was also credited with lowering the district’s dropout rate. 

From 2001-2006, Dr. Fisher simultaneously held the positions of Simonsen’s Fresh Start and credit recovery teacher and the school’s assistant to the administrators, acting as a substitute administrator when needed. Her duties as the assistant to the administrators included assisting with student discipline, teacher evaluations, and professional development, planning and implementing the credit recovery program, and developing the school’s report to the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education. From 1995 through 2006, Dr. Fisher also coached cross country and track for Thomas Jefferson Middle School and Jefferson City High School.

Dr. Fisher graduated from Southwest Missouri State University (now Missouri State University) with a Bachelors of Science in education with a concentration in history. She went on to earn a master’s degree from Lincoln University in secondary education administration and supervision, a specialist in education degree from William Woods University in principal certification for grades 7-12, and a Doctorate of Education from St. Louis University in educational leadership.