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Helmut Schmidt, Published March 11 2013

West Fargo High School names new principal

WEST FARGO – West Fargo High School has a new principal.

Jennifer Fremstad, an assistant principal at Fargo’s South High School has agreed to take the post, Superintendent of Schools David Flowers said Monday. Fremstad officially starts July 1.

“She just impressed us with her passion for students. And references – everyone seems to believe she is ready for that next step,” Flowers said. “We believe that now is the time for Jennifer Fremstad.”

Much of Fremstad’s work at South High is programming for at-risk students, and she is passionate about alternative education.

“I’m pretty excited. I look forward to hearing about all the great programs and opportunities they provide their students,” Fremstad said.

Details of Fremstad’s contract are still being hammered out and will be brought to the school board for final approval on March 25, Flowers said.

Fremstad replaces Gary Clark, who is serving as West Fargo High School’s interim principal. He will continue to be principal through the end of the school year, Flowers said.

Fremstad has been an assistant principal at South since 2005. She has a Master of Science degree in education leadership from Minnesota State University Moorhead.

The 38-year-old Courtenay, N.D., native graduated from Wimbledon-Courtenay High School.

She graduated from the University of North Dakota in 1997 with a degree in English, and taught English in Hillsboro, N.D., Dilworth-Glyndon-Felton, Minn., and Woodrow Wilson High School in Washington, D.C.

She was then head principal and athletic director at Wyndmere (N.D.) High School before being hired at South.

“(She) really has done a terrific job at South,” said Fargo Superintendent of Schools Jeff Schatz.

Clark took over at the high school from former principal Cory Steiner, who was abruptly released from his 2012-13 contract in June 2012.

Flowers said Steiner resigned for personal and professional reasons.

Clark retired at the end of the 2010-11 school year after 40 years with the West Fargo School District, many of them as the high school principal.

He agreed to lead West Fargo High through this school year as the district sought a new principal, Flowers said.

Readers can reach Forum reporter Helmut Schmidt at (701) 241-5583