Small Town News


Steve Buckingham new Wyandotte HS Principal

The American of Vinita, Oklahoma

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The Wyandotte School Board accepted the resignation of High School Principal Marcia Kruse at their May meeting. Middle School Principal, Steve Buckingham was asked to fill the position. Buckingham who has been in education for 37 years said he is glad to be leading the same group of students from the middle school in the upcoming school year.

Buckingham grew up in Tulsa getting his inspiration in education from his fifth grade teacher Mr. Goode. "He instilled in me a work ethic and that school was important," he says. Buckingham says he always wanted to be a coach. "I knew that to be a coach in the public school system I had to be a teacher so I went to school with that in mind."

He received a baseball scholarship to Crowder College in Neosho, Missouri where he played for two years. He them transferred to the University Of Tulsa (TU) where he continued his education and played for the baseball team for two years.

In June 1974 after leaving TU, Buckingham signed a professional contract to play for the Philadelphia Phillies where he played for parts of two seasons before receiving an injury that stopped his career. He then finished up his degree at Missouri Southern State University in Joplin.

Buckingham began teaching in the 1975/76 school year at Anderson, Missouri in McDonald County. After six years he received a year contract to be the head boys' basketball coach in the Ketchum School. He then went back to teach in the McDonald school district completing 17 years in education before taking an administrative position.

He went on to achieve his Master's degree in Secondary Administration from Missouri State University in 1994. He spent two years as the assistant high school principal before taking the principal position in 2000.

He took a crack at retirement in 2007 for the sum of 23 days before returning to principal at the high school in Picher, OK. As luck would twist things he was the principal at the time of the famous May 10, 2008 deadly tornado.

Fortunately for Buckingham an ad in the paper lead him to Wyandotte School District to principal at the middle school. "I was looking for a little job security so I contacted Mr. Gray, the superintendent and I was lucky enough to get the mid school principal position," says Buckingham.

Now after four years as the middle school principal he has accepted the position vacated by Kruse. "The great thing about this is that this year's senior class was my first eighth grade class." He says he feels it will be a smooth and easy transition due to the fact that he already knows all the students he will be responsible for, including the staff he has worked beside for the last four years.

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Original Publication Date: June 7, 2012

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