Shane Johnson, most recently fifth grade teacher at Marble Elementary School, has been promoted to Principal of Whitehills Elementary School.
He has been a teacher in elementary and middle schools for nineteen years, in East Lansing Public Schools and previously in the Lansing School District.
“Teaching is in my family. My grandmother was a teacher, three of my aunts taught, my stepmother taught, and my dad teaches at MacDonald Middle School. In the summer after my freshman year at Michigan State, I worked at the MSU Baseball Camp. That coaching experience was when I realized that I wanted to work with kids,” Johnson tells ELi. (His father is English teacher Jack Johnson.)
Johnson had applied for the position in hopes that his experience inside the classroom could help him guide teachers to success.
“I always appreciated administrators who understood what it felt like to be a teacher, and the challenges that teachers face,” he tells ELi. “Helping people is something that I take pride in, and in this role I want to help as many people as I can.”
East Lansing Public Schools Superintendent Dori Leyko believes Johnson brings with him an invaluable set of skills that make him a great fit for principal of Whitehills Elementary School.
“Shane Johnson was selected as the new Whitehills principal for the knowledge and skills he brings to the position, but more importantly, for the positivity, collegiality, professionalism, and strong interpersonal skills he consistently exhibits. Shane will be a great listener, problem-solver, and advocate for the students, teachers, and families of Whitehills,” Leyko said.
As Principal, he says he hopes to continue the work of his predecessor Andy Wells, who has taken over as Principal of East Lansing High School following the departure of Coby Fletcher at the end of the 2017 school year.
“My hope is that I can support the staff, students, and families so that our students have a positive educational experience,” Johnson said.
He will be head of the school during the demolition and reconstruction of Whitehills Elementary School, which is expected to take place in three to four years. Johnson said he is excited for the opportunities that come with a new building and has been impressed with the process so far.
“I have confidence that our administration, our community and all stakeholders will work together to create some amazing educational facilities,” he said.
Johnson and his wife, Kelly, have five children attending three different East Lansing schools. In addition to attending their numerous activities, Johnson plays guitar and ukulele and enjoys watching Detroit Tigers and MSU basketball and baseball games.