Skip to main content

Davis Journal

New principal hits the ground running

Jan 14, 2021 12:57PM ● By Becky Ginos

BOUNTIFUL—Before the winter break, Doug Hammerschmidt was Assistant Principal at Bountiful High, but when he returned on Jan. 4 – he was the principal at Tolman Elementary. Hammerschmidt took the post after Tolman Principal Vicki Jessen retired.

“The position became available and I applied for it and got it,” said Hammerschmidt. “I feel very fortunate to be here.”

Hammerschmidt has been in education for 16 years. “I taught for nine years at South Davis Junior High then went to Centennial Junior High and opened that school,” he said. “I taught social studies and AP human geography. I love teaching all grades.”

In 2014 he went into administration and was at Millcreek Junior High for a few years. “I had some experience in elementary schools during those years too,” said Hammerschmidt. “I’ve been Assistant Principal at Bountiful High for two and a half years.”

Education is very important to me, he said. “I struggled in school. At one point I wasn’t sure I’d even graduate from high school. But there were some key teachers at Davis High who stepped in and helped me – they changed the trajectory of my life.”

When he first went to college he said he wasn’t planning on becoming a teacher. “But I was in contact with some of my teachers and I felt the call. I felt like this is where I needed to be.”

Hammerschmidt said Vicki Jessen had some great procedures in place that he plans to maintain. “The key goal this year with COVID is to make sure students and families in the community are safe. Also, I want to make sure we’re focusing on the education of students. Because of what’s happened this year some students need help. My mantra is, focus on learning – that's what I’ll put my weight on.”

Fridays as a remote day has been really valuable now, he said. “It’s a day each week where teachers can help students and drill down which standard a specific student needs. That’s where academic intervention comes in. It gives teachers the opportunity to really dig into that.”

“He’s assured me he’s taken the reins,” said Superintendent Reid Newey. “We just have great confidence that  Mr. Hammerschmidt is going to do an outstanding job.”

“I’m excited,” said Hammerschmidt. “The kids have an energy that’s invigorating. I’m proud of the teachers. It’s clear to me that they’ve been working hard to meet the needs of our students. I’m thrilled to be a part of that community.”