5th grader applies to be principal of Chief Joseph Elementary

GREAT FALLS, Mont. – Ruth Rossmiller can be described as funny, spunky, and a go-getter; which is exactly why she applied to be the principal at Chief Joseph Elementary School. 

“The impossible is possible if you just try for it for sure,” said Rossmiller. 

When she found out her current principal, Brian Miller, was going to be leaving Chief Joseph to go to North Middle School, she filled out the 10-page application with her mom; including a cover letter that could rival any adult resume. 

After she applied, she got a phone call. 

“It was really well done and our HR office and our executive director screened the application and just, you know, we’re just impressed by it,” said Tom Moore “So we’re interviewing for adult candidates today [April 12, 2023] and then we’re also going to interview this fifth grader.” 

The district asked her questions like they would any other principal candidate. 

“You have a fifth grader sitting in front of a bunch of superintendents and other adults who are who are masters at their profession, and she’s holding her own,” said Miller. 

“I thought I would be more nervous, but it was No, I wasn’t nervous at all,” said Rossmiller. 

Questions like how she would resolve conflict between students and teachers, what she would do to problem solve if a substitute teacher didn’t show up, and the very first thing she would do as principal at Chief Joseph Elementary. 

“What is the very first thing you’d do as principal,” asked Moore. 

“Probably the donations for the food bags that they give to students, to add more things., I’d probably change stuff,” answered Rossmiller.

“Change what stuff,” replied Moore. 

“Probably putting more food into the bag. Like, it’s such more help around the school.”

Her teacher and principal had the opportunity to sit in on the interview with Ruth, and say she showed courage and bravery. 

“I’m so thankful that our district embraced this and allowed an opportunity to her to come and take time out of the day to interview a kiddo. And I’m so, so proud of Ruth Rossmiller for coming in and stepping up and and reminding us all what it means to have courage,” said Miller. 

“To have our students thinking about education as a career and a noble endeavor… it’s extremely rewarding,” said Moore. 

A fun thing she also wants to implement is Taco Tuesday every Tuesday as a lunch option for students. 

While the district didn’t offer her the full time position, they are offering her the opportunity to be principal for a day on April 24, 2023.

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