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story.lead_photo.caption RACHEL DICKERSON/MCDONALD COUNTY PRESS Jonathon Derryberry is the new assistant principal at Anderson Elementary School.

Jonathon Derryberry, the new assistant principal at Anderson Elementary School, said he took on his current role because he loves being around students.

He decided to get into education because he had family members who were educators, he said. His grandmother taught for 37 years, and his father was an assistant principal in Neosho.

"It's just kind of been what I know. I've been around it my whole life," he said.

Derryberry grew up in Neosho. He went to Crowder College in Neosho. He earned his bachelor's degree at Missouri Southern State University and his master's degree at Missouri State University. He will complete his specialist degree this December from Arkansas State University.

Derryberry and his wife, Courtney, have a 3-year-old son and are expecting a baby in the next couple of months.

In his first year of teaching, he taught special education at Pierce City and also coached high school football and junior high basketball. For three years he taught special education at McDonald County High School and coached high school basketball and junior high football. He was at Neosho for two years, where he taught physical education and coached high school basketball, junior high basketball, high school track and junior high track. Then, he got the job as assistant principal at Anderson Elementary School.

Asked why he wanted to be an administrator, he said, "I love being around kids. I love being around students. I wanted to take on a job where I could be around all the kids in a school. I was ready for a leadership type of role. I wanted to make a difference in the community somehow."

As for how the year has been going, he said, "It's been great. The teachers here are great. The students here are unbelievable. They made the transition great. Working with Mr. Barratt (principal Trent Barratt), he's been a great mentor for me. The staff has welcomed me with open arms into their family here, so that's made it a great transition."

Derryberry said what he enjoys about being an educator is "building relationships with the kids. The difference you see and the impact you see when building those relationships."

Regarding his philosophy on education, he said, "Students first. All of our decisions need to be based on students and what will help students succeed."

General News on 10/11/2018

Print Headline: Derryberry Loves Being Around Students

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