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Kingsland School has new principal

Kingsland School Principal Jessica Jones

Kingsland School hired Jessica Jones as its new principal on July 7. Staff and courtesy photos

Jessica Jones is the new principal at Kingsland School. She joined the public charter school after six years as a classroom teacher, an instructional coach, and a data fellow at Rapport Academy in Waco. Jones was hired on July 7.

“Ms. Jones was chosen as she was the best match for our culture and vision for Kingsland School,” said Adam Price, director of Community Relations and Development for Orenda Charter School District, which oversees Kingsland School. “She brings several years of experience to us from a small public charter school, so she has a working knowledge of our challenges and benefits.”

Jones grabs the reins following the departure of longtime head Principal Meloni Puishes at the beginning of the 2022-23 school year.

“Meloni Puishes served as our principal for several years; however, most of last year, we had current Orenda staff serving as interim principal,” Price said.

Kingsland School, 2112 RR 1431 West, is an open-enrollment, tuition-free public charter school with grades K-12. It is open to children in Burnet and Llano counties.

“Kingsland School offers a smaller, more intimate setting than larger school districts,” Price said. “As a rural community, we may fit a need for parents who prefer their children not have long bus rides to and from school.”

It opened in 2016 and is gradually growing its enrollment.

“As a public charter school, we are an open-enrollment model, so our numbers can fluctuate on a regular basis,” Price said. “We currently have open slots, K-12 grade. Our enrollment numbers certainly suffered during the pandemic, and we are slowly working to recover.”

Price said the school’s intentionally small class sizes benefit students.

“Smaller class sizes can help ensure more attention for individual students, improve morale, and reduce behavioral issues,” he said.

Over the summer, the school has made several renovations to upgrade its space, including a mold removal project that will be completed by Aug. 4 and a modern playground being installed in front of the property.

“Our previous playground was on property not owned by the school district, and students now have a safe place to get fresh air and outside breaks,” Price said.

Kingsland School starts the 2023-24 academic year on Aug. 14.