Fours years ago Brownstown High School hired a new principal, Mr. Michael Shackelford. Mr. Shackelford is from Casey, IL and a 1992 graduate from Casey-Westfield High School. He attended Lake Land College as a Marketing/Management Major, but later returned to LLC to complete his AA in History. From there he earned a Bachelor Degree in Social Science, a masters degree in Educational Administration, and a Specialist Degree in Educational Leadership from Eastern Illinois University. After thirteen years of teaching high school social studies and coaching football and baseball, Mr. Shackelford felt he had fulfilled his duties as a teacher and was ready for the challenges of administration. He was hired on at Brownstown High School as principal for the 2012-2013 school year and from day one has continued to put all his effort into making BHS one of the best places for students to learn.
As a child Mr. Shackelford was influenced by his teachers. With his father out of the picture, his mother had her hands full raising four children. He had a couple of jr. high teachers that recognized this and made an effort to reach out to him. They taught him about values like respect, responsibility, reliability, and the value of education. He became a teacher because of the influence those teachers had on his life. Those same teachers also helped him coach football at Casey-Westfield, and they built the same values into their football program that they impressed upon Mr. Shackelford. While at Casey-Westfield he was privileged enough to have coached two state championship squads. Being a part of those state teams is one of his favorite coaching experiences. He now teaches those values to students here at BHS everyday.
He became a principal at Brownstown High School to grow as an educator and take on new responsibilities and challenges that come with leadership. He enjoys watching each student grow and be successful in their educational challenges. He also shares a sense of pride and accomplishment with his faculty and staff when each student walks across the stage to receive their diploma at eighth grade promotion and high school graduation. Mr. Shackelford feels that his biggest challenges as principal are federal and state mandates and new movements in education like Common Core and PERA. While they are good for education, they put additional responsibilities and pressure on students and schools. He exclaimed that he enjoys being a principal because every day is a new day.
A few hobbies of Mr. Shackelford are politics, reading, and sports. Since becoming principal at Brownstown he tries to read all the novels that the English classes are reading. He also loves watching his thirteen year old son, Nathan, play ball, and his seven year old daughter, Kora, participate in gymnastics and music. Mr. Shackelford married his high school sweetheart and they have been together for 15 very happy years. Mr. Shackelford’s passion for history, education, and life make any conversation with him an enjoyable one (if you're in the office for the right reasons of course). Next time you see your principal in the hallway, say hello!
by Courtney Zasada
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