The student-run online newspaper for Starr's Mill High School

The Prowler

The student-run online newspaper for Starr's Mill High School

The Prowler

The student-run online newspaper for Starr's Mill High School

The Prowler

Leonard accepts transportation position

Crista Alarcon
Principal Allen Leonard stands by a collection of some of his achievements and memorabilia during his time at Starr’s Mill. He will be moving on to a position in the county as Head of Transportation after finishing this school year.

After 13 years of working at Starr’s Mill, Principal Allen Leonard has decided to change paths and move to a county position in transportation.

Leonard has deep roots in Fayette County as he grew up here since age four. He attended Fayette County High School and later went on to teach economics. He started his work at Starr’s Mill 13 years ago, four of which he was assistant principal and the last nine have been as principal.

“I’ve spent my entire life, outside of four years in college, in the Fayette County school system, and it’s been very good to me in both preparation but also employment,” Leonard said. “It’s always good to continue to give back to the places that helped support you.” 

Leonard will now take over the position of Director of Transportation for Steve Green who worked there for four years and is now retiring. Leonard will be supervising the transportation department made up of the bus drivers and buses, the maintenance vans that maintain all of the schools and buses, and an office of about 10 people that do all of the routing, assigning of trips, and paperwork. 

In his time at Starr’s Mill, he has learned the importance of the relationships he has with the people he works with, not only his staff but also people who are in the same position as him at different levels.

“Ultimately the biggest thing that I’ve learned and if I could give advice to whoever comes and in the seat after me is to always listen first,” Leonard said. “And try to take in as many points of view and try to see things from the perspective of who you’re dealing with before you just assume you’ve got all the right answers, because there are a lot of people whose lives are impacted by the decisions I make.”

Leonard was principal through some monumental events starting with his first year having an indoor graduation for the first time in Fayette County history. Other key moments included a renovation, where the school was refurbished, COVID-19 and shutting down the school, and most recently the burst pipe in the parking lot

“Definitely there’s a lot of events that are memorable but those events also happened in all those other schools, too,” Leonard said. “As the superintendent who hired me, Dr Barrow, used to talk about your time in the barrel right? Well, the longer you are in the job, the longer and the more often you’ll have your time in the barrel.”

His biggest memory at Starr’s Mill is not an exact moment but instead graduation which is something that he holds dear every year. Graduation is extremely important to him because getting to shake the hand of all the students of that class is the reason he does this work.

He hopes his legacy is that he built on the foundation of the previous principal and the foundations of what Starr’s Mill is really about.

“I hope that when people start thinking about my legacy, and I get weird about that word, is that I left it better than I found it,” Leonard said. “And that we’re in a better place, not that we were in a bad place but that we consistently and continuously get better and provide more opportunities and better opportunities and better experiences for our students.”

He will finish out this school year before fully transitioning to his new position over the summer.

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