Lakewood names new school superintendent

LAKEWOOD — When Lakewood School Superintendent Larry Francois accepted a job with the Northshore School District earlier this month, the Lakewood School Board didn’t feel a need to launch a long national search.

It looked from within its ranks and hired Assistant Superintendent Dennis Haddock to take the reins of the 2,300-student district.

The board voted unanimously earlier this week to make Haddock the leader of the district south of Stanwood. Details of a contract are still being negotiated, but the board expects to vote on the package March 26. Haddock will begin July 1.

Haddock, 51, has been an assistant superintendent in the district for the past three years. His primary responsibilities included human resources, special programs and student services.

During that time, he said he has been impressed with the close relationship he has seen between teachers and their students along with parent participation in the schools. Lakewood has also posted some of the highest test scores on state exams in the area.

“It’s a very student-oriented, student-centered atmosphere,” he said. “We have got just an incredible core group of dedicated educators.”

Before his stint in Lakewood, Haddock spent three years as executive director of human resources in the Lake Stevens School District. He also has served as director of special services in the Mukilteo School District, director of student services in the Anacortes School District, and as a school psychologist in the Mount Vernon, Mukilteo and Olympia school districts.

Haddock, who lives in Burlington, earned his bachelor’s degree in psychology at Washington State University and his doctorate degree in educational leadership and policy studies at the University of Washington. He graduated from Oak Harbor High School in 1974.

Haddock said his leadership style emphasizes collaboration with colleagues and an “open door” to discuss concerns.

He has several goals, including making sure training for teachers is worthwhile and that taxpayers get a good return on their investment.

Reporter Eric Stevick: 425-339-3446 or e-mail

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