The Clarke Community School District welcomes Dr. Alan Dykens as the incoming Superintendent on July 1st, filling the role vacated by the retirement of Steve Seid. Dr. Dykens comes to Clarke Schools after five successful years as PK-12 Principal of Lamoni Community Schools.
Building pride in education and community is nothing new for Dr. Dykens. Growing up in a family full of educators, he recognized early on that the teaching environment offers a unique experience.
“My father, my aunts and uncles, all showed me the appeal of education as a way to positively influence students,” said Dykens. “Seeing the favorable impact you’ve had on the lives of young people years later is a feeling second to none.”
Dr. Dykens’s career has taken him all over the country and allowed him to make a difference in the lives of students through a variety of roles. As a coach, he led more than one football program out of losing seasons into championship contention, brought in the largest incoming class in Graceland University history as Director of Student Enrollment, and built district-wide self-respect and enthusiasm as Principal of Lamoni Schools. Dr. Dykens believes that the key to success lies in helping students and community members foster a culture of growth and pride.
“If I can come into Clarke Schools with these great educators, infrastructure, and community support and just light a spark, I know we can work to build a roaring flame,” said Dykens. “I’m excited to see the potential here and know that, with the support from the community and the school board, together we can become a true beacon school for south-central Iowa.”
One of the biggest challenges Dr. Dykens sees on the horizon is building community relationships. He plans to start by getting out into the district to meet students, families, staff, and residents of the district, and build an open-door culture for his leadership. He hopes to draw on his record of building successful teams and educational environments by listening and being open to ideas that benefit every member of the district.
“My bottom line is to make sure we are paying attention to what is best for Clarke Schools, for the kids, their education, and their health,” said Dykens. “A lot of people in the district have great ideas, and my job is to facilitate those ideas that best serve the students of Clarke Community Schools.”
Through the end of June, Dykens will be finishing up his service as coach and principal at Lamoni, taking the reins for Clarke on July 1st.