2014 Pulitzer Prize Winner

Coronado’s assistant principal in line for top job

Published: May 9, 2014, 10:40 am, by Debbie Kelley
Darin Smith

Darin Smith

The second time around seems to be the charm for Coronado High School’s assistant principal, Darin Smith.

A 1990 graduate of Coronado, Smith is poised to become the school’s principal, starting with the 2014-2015 academic year.
It’s his second try at landing the job.
Smith’s appointment was presented to staff and community members April 29 and will be up for final approval before Colorado Springs School District 11′s board of education  Wednesday, May 14.
Smith initially was one of five finalists being considered for two openings for principals at D-11 high schools, Doherty and Coronado. Kevin Gardner of Cedaredge High on Colorado’s western slope, was selected in March to take over at Doherty, but none of the remaining four candidates were named to head Coronado.
Instead, D-11 administrators reopened the search for the Coronado job. Six finalists were selected, including Smith.
Smith surfaced as the leading candidate through an extensive interview process, according to Marcia Landwehr, current principal, which included several
rounds of interviews with administration, school staff, students, parents and community members.

Before becoming a school administrator in 2010, Smith previously taught chemistry at Coronado for five years. He had been preparing for an upward ladder move by earning a master’s degree and principal’s license from the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs.

Two of Smith’s children are graduating from Coronado this year.

A teacher for 14 years, Smith’s career started at Fountain-Fort C arson School District 8, where he taught one year of middle school. Smith then moved to D-11 and taught at Wasson High and Palmer High.

Landwehr took over this school year when D-11 closed a fifth high school, Wasson, and moved David Engstrom to the Wasson campus, which has been remodeled to encompass eight alternative-type educational programs.