Calling the opportunity a “dream situation,” Belgrade High School alum Tyler Miller has been named BHS’s newest assistant principal.
A 2004 Belgrade High graduate, Miller will fill the job being vacated by Shanna Smith, who is replacing retiring Principal Paul Lamb in July. Smith said Miller was one of three finalists interviewed for the position, and he quickly rose to the top because “he spoke to everything that is dear to us as a team at Belgrade High School” – e.g., his intellect, character and integrity, enthusiasm for the work, and his willingness to make a long-term commitment to the school.
“He really aligned with the visions for our new administrative team,” which also comprises Smith and BHS’s other assistant principal Bert Horsley, Smith said. “His character is what we’re looking for at Belgrade High School. He’ll fit right in.”
Miller will bring a valuable perspective developed during 10 years of teaching social studies in Baltimore city schools, Smith added. Miller said he enjoyed the work in the eastern city, which presented “unique challenges I wouldn’t have gotten anywhere in Montana,” and he is excited to apply that experience in his hometown.
While Miller said he will miss teaching, the opportunity at BHS aligned not only with his personal goals but with his desire to move into school leadership. While on the job in Baltimore, he worked to support the implementation of a Student Learning Objectives (SLO) system, which both set attainable standards for students and helped teachers use data to inform their teaching. That experience prompted him to pursue a master’s certificate in school administration, which he earned in 2019.
His experience as a teacher leader helped him stand out as a candidate, Smith said – especially when his colleagues in Baltimore said how much they were going to miss him when they were contacted during reference checks.
“He’s going to bring another level to Belgrade High School,” Smith predicted. “He will back that up by modeling and leading by example.”
After graduating from BHS, Miller attending Montana State University, where he earned degrees in mathematics and government studies, as well a secondary education degree. He did his student teaching in New Zealand, then took the job in Baltimore. During his tenure there, he earned a master’s degree in international relations, in addition to the school administration certificate.
Miller said he is eager to return to Belgrade, where his parents still live, with his wife and two young sons. As much as he enjoyed Baltimore, he says Montana is where he ultimately hoped to be long term.
“I felt like I had a great high school experience going to school in Belgrade, and now I’m looking forward to developing professional relationships there,” he said. “Professionally and personally, this is a dream situation.”