The Gahanna-Jefferson Board of Education on Monday made several administrative changes for the 2008-09 school year.

The Gahanna-Jefferson Board of Education on Monday made several administrative changes for the 2008-09 school year.

Middle School West principal John Rathburn was named Gahanna Lincoln High School assistant principal. Middle School South assistant principal Brett Harmon was assigned as Rathburn's replacement at MSW, and LHS dean of students Jock Harris went to MSS as assistant principal.

Superintendent Gregg Morris said Rathburn wanted to return to the high school and Harmon was excited to be named principal at MSW.

Morris said Harmon has a good background in instructional development.

"He has good experience at South working under Angie Adrean," Morris said. "Jock is excited to go to South. This is late, but it is a good move."

Harmon told ThisWeek he has been an assistant principal at MSS for four years.

"My next obvious ambition was to be principal, specifically at Middle School West," he said. "That is a special place for me."

Harmon attended Middle School West as a sixth- and seventh-grader. He said a lot of teachers there made a big difference in his life as a student. MSW has great staff, great families and great kids, he said.

One of the best things about working at MSS was to work with Angie Adrean, Harmon said, calling her a collaborative leader. He said staff has done an incredible job of undertaking new initiatives.

"We have done a lot in the building, built some important relationships with families, children and parents," Harmon said.

His primary goal as MSW principal is student achievement, teaching and learning. He said the general goal will be to move the school forward and determine how to help students improve on a daily basis. Harmon said he will develop those goals with MSW staff.

"I don't have mandates I'm coming in with at this juncture in the year," he said. "It is important for us to develop those things together."

A second goal is to get to know staff, students and families and to work with the school's continuous improvement plan to improve outstanding programs that are already in place.

Prior to being named assistant principal at MSS, Harmon was an assistant principal at Hamilton Township High School. He also was an English teacher at Hamilton Township.

Rathburn was principal at Hamilton Township High School when he accepted an assistant principal position at Gahanna Lincoln High School. In 2006 he was named MSW principal.

Rathburn said he was excited about returning to LHS.

"It is an exciting time with a new principal coming in," he said, adding that he has gotten to know Principal Dwight Carter well over the last several years when Carter was principal at Middle School East.

Rathburn said he enjoys high school more than middle school. He has been in education for 21 years, 19 of them at the high school level.

"I enjoy that age group," he said. "One of the nice things about going back is I have already built relationships with staff members. I can hit the ground running because of my familiarity with Lincoln High School and the people there."

Harris said he decided to accept the position because he had previous experience as a high school principal and middle school principal for Columbus City Schools.

"I was particularly excited about returning to that age group," he said.

His main objective at MSS is to get to know the students, staff, administration and parents as soon as possible, he said.

"I do have one advantage: Two of my children did attend Middle School South and received a great education there," Harris said.