One week before school starts, Schirle Elementary gets new principal

Kelsey Daniels (Courtesy/Salem-Keizer School District)

Schirle Elementary School is getting a new principal this year after a few last minute shuffles among Salem-Keizer administrators.

Former principal Clinton Gertenrich is moving to Sprague High School to work as assistant principal and athletic director, the district announced in an email to school board members.

Sprague’s former assistant principal, Chad Barkes, took over as principal this year.

READ: Sprague names Chad Barkes new principal

Kelsey Daniels will become Schirle’s new principal. Daniels worked last year as an assistant principal at Four Corners and Mary Eyre elementary schools. She was assigned to Pringle Elementary as an assistant principal for the coming school year before the change was announced.


Daniels was born and raised in the Salem area and started working in education as a sign language interpreter before becoming a teacher. She worked at Keizer and Battle Creek elementary schools for eight years and then became a district mentor, helping coach other teachers.

She earned an administrative license from the University of Oregon while working as a mentor and has been an assistant principal for four years.

Clinton Gertenrich (Courtesy/Salem-Keizer School District)

Sophia Duerst, a former assistant principal at Auburn Elementary, will be the new assistant principal at Pringle Elementary.

Gertenrich taught at Houck Middle School, and he has been an administrator at North Salem High School and Candalaria Elementary School before becoming Schirle’s principal. He has also been a coach at nearly every high school in the district.

Schirle and Sprague are among eight Salem-Keizer schools starting the year with new principals.

READ: Six Salem-Keizer schools to start 2019-20 with new principals

Reporter Rachel Alexander: [email protected] or 503-575-1241.

Rachel Alexander is Salem Reporter’s managing editor. She joined Salem Reporter when it was founded in 2018 and covers city news, education, nonprofits and a little bit of everything else. She’s been a journalist in Oregon and Washington for a decade. Outside of work, she’s a skater and board member with Salem’s Cherry City Roller Derby and can often be found with her nose buried in a book.