At left: retiring School District 5 Superintendent Silke Yardley. At right: Viveka Johnson will begin her superintendentship in August, 2022.(File photos)

At left: retiring School District 5 Superintendent Silke Yardley. At right: Viveka Johnson will begin her superintendentship in August, 2022.(File photos)

School District 5 hires new superintendent

Viveka Johnson, former principal at MBSS, will take over from Silke Yardley, who is retiring at the end of July

School District 5 will have a new top manager for the 2022/23 school year.

The Southeast Kootenay District announced in a “Changing of the Guard” release Tuesday, April 26, that the Board of Trustees, at their April 12 meeting, had accepted “with regret” the retirement of Superintendent Silke Yardley, who served as Superintendent of the District since 2019.

This week, after conducting interviews, Viveka Johnson was hired to take over as Superintendent, starting in August, 2022.

Johnson was principal of Mount Baker Secondary School in Cranbrook from 2012 to 2020. She has since worked with School District 6 (Rocky Mountain).

Frank Lento, SD5 Board Chair, praised with work Yardley had done for the District during her tenure.

“Silke was a driving force for SD5, providing stability while maintaining the Board’s vision through the Covid-19 pandemic,” Lento said in the release.

“Incredibly proactive and focused, Silke remained dedicated to our purpose, which is to provide quality education for all students in a safe, caring environment.

“Despite the pandemic, Silke was able to maintain or improve on many SD5 initiatives, implement an impressive Framework for Enhanced Student Learning (FESL), maintain staff morale and ensure the safety of our students and staff. She will be greatly missed by the entire SD5 learning community.”

Yardley is leaving her role at the end of July “to begin a new phase of her career — as a full-time grandma.” She has also been contracted to provide guidance and mentorship to the incoming Superintendent over the course of a transition period of several months.

The Board of Trustees hired Dr. Leroy Sloan, of Sloan Consultants, to help in the selection of the new Superintendent. Sloan had been involved in the hiring of Yardley, and also Nick Taylor as Secretary Treasurer for the District. With Sloan’s assistance, the Board conducted interviews last week, and this week announced the hiring of Johnson.

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