The West Valley School District has a new assistant superintendent; one who is no stranger to schools in Spokane Valley.
Jean Marczynski, 56, took over the position left vacant by Gene Sementi, now the district’s superintendent, as of July 1. She comes to West Valley from the Central Valley School District where she was the executive director for secondary learning and teaching.
Marczynski started in education more than 30 years ago, inspired by her grandmother who taught physically disabled students.
She remembers visiting her grandmother’s classroom and helping the students during a field trip to a swimming pool.
Marczynski did her student teaching at the Spokane Guilds’ School and Neuromuscular Center. She substituted in West Valley before moving into Central Valley. She taught special education, was a reading specialist, worked as a general education teacher and taught behaviorally disabled children, as well.
She’s been an administrator for a number of years, and while she hasn’t been teaching in the classroom, she visits often enough to watch students grow from children into adults.
“To me, a really important piece of being an administrator is being in the schools,” she said.
Marczynski recently earned her doctorate in administration and said she is looking forward to working in West Valley.
She was attracted to the district for programs such as Spokane Valley High School, the West Valley Outdoor Learning Center, Contract Based Education and West Valley City School.
“For a district this size, there is a real variety of opportunities for students,” she said.
During her last few months at Central Valley, Marczynski has been working with representatives from West Valley in discussions about the curriculum for the new Spokane Valley Tech, a branch of the Spokane Skills Center set to open next door to CBE in January. She said she’s looking forward to working with West Valley’s staff full time.
“The people have been so welcoming and wonderful,” she said of her first week.
She said she has been screening teachers’ applications and has noticed many who apply are former West Valley students.
“It’s quite a strong sense of community,” she said.
In her free time, she likes to snow ski, water ski, travel and read. She’s been running four days a week with the same group of friends for 25 years.
Gary Sigler, her husband of 30 years, is a retired Eastern Washington University applied psychology professor. Her older daughter, Summerlynn Sigler, 27, recently earned her master’s degree in administration from University of California, Berkeley, and is a vice principal. Her younger daughter, McKenze Sigler, 25, is finishing her master’s in public health in Limassol, Cyprus.
Marczynski is looking forward to her new job at West Valley.
“(I want to) continue the great programs they have and build from there,” she said.