NEW PARIS — This will be Mark Wiseman’s last school year as National Trail Middle School Principal. At the NT Board of Education meeting held Tuesday, March 28, the board members approved his request for retirement. His year will end on July 31.
Wiseman began his education career in August 1978 as a math teacher at Arcanum High School. He spent 23 years teaching there. He also served as a coach of several different Arcanum sports, including football, basketball, baseball, and golf.
While he says he originally had no interest in administration, he got a masters degree right away. After teaching the same classes for 23 years, he says was tired of the routine.
“I was looking for something different, that was still education. So I started exploring opportunities in the area,” he said.
He started at National Trail as an assistant 7-12 grade principal.
“As people left, I started inquiring about their positions,” he said. “First was the middle school principal, for two or three years, then the high school principal left and basically I was the 5-12 principal for awhile. Which was crazy. It was way too much. I did that for three years and then we reorganized. I went back to the middle school and I’ve been the middle school principal since then.”
He enjoyed teaching a lot. He liked having the “day-to-day contact” with students.
“You really get the opportunity to see kids grow. From the beginning of the year to the end of the year. A lot of times in administration, and the principal spot, you have the chance to see everybody, but you are only seeing kids for particular reasons… Where they’ve made mistakes,” he said.
“You get to see the growth of kids as they move from one grade level to another. Sometimes it is not the best situation when you have to talk to them and see them,” he added.
Over the years, as he got married and had children, he phased out coaching so many sports.
This is technically Wiseman’s second retirement, but his first was a retire-rehire. “It’s just one of those situations where the job did not change, but it was an opportunity and I took advantage of it,” he said. This is the 10th year he has been in his retire-rehire position.
Now it is time for him to move away from education altogether and retire from job as principal.
“It hasn’t really hit me yet — I know come next fall it is going to feel strange, because I’ve been stepping into a school building ever since I have been five years old until now,” he said. “So it’s going to be different. I’m going to miss the interactions with students and staff.”
Of his decision to retire, Wiseman said he knew it was time to leave. “This has been a very enjoyable job here and I really love dealing with the people here — but sometimes it’s just time to find something else to do,” he said.
However, he does not yet have any retirement plans.
According to Wiseman, everybody has been supportive about his retirement.
“They hate to see me go, but know that everybody has to make that decision sometime,” he said.
“This is a great place to be, the people that work here are all here for the right reason, and I’ve really enjoyed my job here working with the people in the community, the students and staff. It’s been an outstanding experience.”
Reach Kelsey Kimbler at 937-683-4061 or on Twitter @KKimbler_RH