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New Southwood Elementary principal named

Lenoir County Public Schools named a new elementary school principal and brought back a veteran administrator to fill a district-level directorship in personnel moves recommended by Superintendent Brent Williams and approved by the Lenoir County Board of Education.

Christel Carlyle Christel Carlyle, who served as an assistant principal at Kinston High School last school year, will lead Southwood Elementary School in 2019-2020. Her appointment, announced Monday night by Superintendent Williams, is effective immediately.

The Southwood post came open when Michelle Hill, principal there since 2014, asked to be considered for the position of elementary curriculum specialist in math. Hill, who moves to that job immediately, will be based at Southeast Elementary. Christy Eubanks, who held that position last school year, will be based as a curriculum specialist at Banks Elementary in 2019-2020.

“Mrs. Hill has done a great job at Southwood Elementary School,” Williams said in announcing the changes as the school board meeting ended. “She contacted me and expressed interest in an available curriculum development job. She was selected for that job, so we’re excited for Mrs. Hill and congratulate her.”

Also approved by the school board was the return of Vivian Roach, retired director of the Exceptional Children Department, as Federal Programs director on an interim basis. Roach, who retired in December, led the district’s EC Department for five years. The Federal Programs position came open six months ago when then-director Tina Letchworth accepted a position with the N.C. Department of Public Instruction. Abbott Hunsucker, former Federal Programs director, led the department on an interim basis before returning to retirement in June.

An educator with nearly 20 years’ experience, Carlyle started with LCPS in 2007 as an English teacher at Kinston High School. She has since held positions in the district as principal intern and interim principal at Banks Elementary, curriculum specialist at Kinston High and assistant principal there. She previously worked as an English teacher in Greene County and also served as assistant principal at Lakeforest Elementary School in Pitt County in 2018.

“We feel confident she will transition well with Mrs. Hill and do a great job at Southwood and continue the tradition of excellence there,” Williams said in announcing Carlyle’s promotion.

A native of Lenoir County and a graduate of Kinston High, she earned a bachelor of science degree in secondary English education and a master of school administration degree from East Carolina University. As a teacher, she earned National Board Certification and renewed the distinction in 2018.

“I’m very thankful for the opportunity and am looking forward to serving the students and families and staff of Southwood,” Carlyle told the school board.