Longtime Scott Valley educator Joy Isbell named principal at Etna and Scott River high schools

Bill Choy
Siskiyou Daily News

Longtime Scott Valley educator Joy Isbell recently took over the reins as principal of Etna and Scott River high schools.

New Etna High School principal Joy Isbell, right. To her left is Director of School Operations Matt Chester.

She was born and raised in the Scott Valley and is a 2002 graduate of EHS. Isbell has worked in the Scott Valley Unified School District for 16 years. She was previously principal at Fort Jones Elementary School for seven years and started the school year as assistant principal at the high schools, with superintendent Micheline G. Mglis, the interim principal.  

"I'm thrilled," Isbell said about her new position. "I'm glad to be able to continue to support the students in the Scott Valley with their endeavors."

She graduated from the University of Colorado Boulder and received her master's degree in education from Simpson University in Redding.  

While earning her teaching credential, she taught summer school at EHS and was the school lunch lady. Isbell started her career at Etna Elementary School as a fourth-grade teacher.  

Her goal is to continue to support students at Scott River, which is the alternative school in the district, and at EHS. Isbell said that she wants to make sure the schools continue offering programs that give students the skills to succeed in their post-secondary endeavors. This includes finding a job or going to technical school or a two- or four-year college.  

"I love being able to give back to the community that helped and supported me growing up," Isbell said. "It's important to do your part in supporting others. I take this duty very seriously."  

Miglis said that Isbell was a great fit to lead EHS.  

"She has a clear understanding of what is "good" and what is "great," she said.

Miglis believes that Isbell will help in the vision of the district for EHS. She said that vision is to help EHS evolve into a flagship school in the county and in the region, with increased pathways and programs for students, including expanded extra-curricular and post-secondary apprenticeship and early college programs.   

Miglis said they have assembled the right team at EHS with Isbell and Director of School Operations Matt Chester, who began his duties this year after a long and distinguished career in the military.    

"We might say, timing is everything, and now Principal Isbell is leading the Lions, a full circle. I couldn't be happier," Miglis said.  

Isbell thanked Chester for all he has brought to the table. She said they make a good team and work well together to ensure the students and staff have the resources needed to succeed. 

Bill Choy covers sports and general news for the Siskiyou Daily News/Mount Shasta Herald/USA Today Network. Follow him on Twitter at@SDNBillChoy. Email Bill at bchoy@siskiyoudaily.com. Support local journalism by subscribing today.