A familiar face will return to the Forest City Middle School as principal beginning in the 2023-24 school year. During Monday’s Board of Education meeting, the board approved the appointment of Sarah Leichensring, who has served as middle school principal in Osage since 2019, as Forest City’s Middle School’s new principal. Leichsenring will join the district on July 1, 2023, the same date current Middle School Principal Zach Dillavou will assume his new role in the district as executive director of teaching and learning.
“We are thrilled to welcome Sarah back to the district,” said superintendent Darwin Lehmann. “To Forest City, she brings 14 years of education experience as a teacher, curriculum director, instructional coach, coach and administrator and has absolutely found her passion in working with middle school students and staff.”
Leichsenring began her teaching career in the Central Lee and Mason City school districts after graduating from Waldorf University. She taught middle school social studies and served as an instructional coach in the Forest City district from 2014-2018. While in Forest City, she earned her masters of science degree in education with a focus on teaching, learning and leadership. She left the district to serve as joint curriculum director for the Osage and Riceville districts, earned her principal certificate from University of Northern Iowa and was promoted to principal of the Osage Middle School just one year later in 2019.
“We were fortunate to have excellent candidates apply for this position and I would like to thank our hiring committee comprised of students, staff, teachers and administrators for their feedback throughout the hiring process. Committee members cited Sarah’s passion for middle school-age students, her innovation in educational practices, her contagious enthusiasm and her growth mindset as reasons why she would be a great candidate to continue the long-standing tradition of excellence at the Forest City Middle School,” said Lehmann.
Leichsenring said, “I have had the privilege of serving the students and families of the Osage School District and it is a great honor to return to Forest City as the Middle School principal. I believe the past connections I have already established and the experiences I have had since will continue to propel the district forward. I look forward to working with the students, families and dedicated staff in this wonderful district and community.”