Returning to Serve
Former assistant superintendent joins McKay School faculty
After an outstanding career as a teacher, principal, and district administrator, one of our McKay School alumni is returning to support classroom teachers and teacher candidates in maximizing their skills and opportunities.
“Being an educator is an opportunity to change the world through working with such amazing people,” said Gary Seastrand, who is retiring after 36 years of service in Alpine School District. “Plus, if you’re lucky you get recess.”
Seastrand joins the McKay School this month as director of professional development of the Center for the Improvement of Teacher Education and Schooling (CITES). At CITES, Seastrand intends to “build programs that matter to students.” His work will include providing opportunities for teacher development, endorsements, and conferences to encourage best practices among schools in the BYU-Public School Partnership.
As assistant superintendent of Alpine School District for 14 years, Seastrand managed K-12 administration of 79 schools. He also oversaw the construction of 23 schools and remodeling of 29 others. Simultaneously he participated in the Partnership and served as professional development chairperson of the BYU McKay School Alumni Board.
CITES director Dr. Steven Baugh is perhaps the most eager for Seastrand’s arrival. “We are so very fortunate. Gary comes with perspective from a long and exceptional career as well as experience in the Partnership,” said Baugh, who worked closely with Seastrand while serving as superintendent of Alpine District. “He brings out the best in others and will be a key player in moving the Partnership forward.”
Both Seastrand and his wife grew up in Orem. They now have five sons and four grandchildren. Seastrand says raising five sons taught him perseverance, faith, patience, and trust. “Many a life lesson came from raising boys,” he said. Seastrand particularly enjoys golfing in the summer and skiing in the winter. At home he spends spare time gardening or reading.
Speaking from experience, Seastrand considers relationships the best tool an educator can have. “Teachers have to go the extra mile sometimes to connect with students and help them be successful,” he said. “The personal touch matters more than anything.”
July 10, 2012