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Reuben Johnson Principal Michelle Baumann Headed to Walker Elementary, Assistant Principal Kristen Patterson Named RJE Principal

Press Release|
Shane Mauldin|
Monday, May 8, 2023

McKinney, Texas – Longtime Reuben Johnson Elementary Principal Michelle Baumann has been chosen to serve as the new principal of Walker Elementary. With Baumann’s move to Walker, MISD has chosen current Reuben Johnson Assistant Principal Kristen Patterson as the new principal of Reuben Johnson Elementary.

The Walker principal position became available when Principal Melanie Raleeh was announced in April as the district’s Assistant Superintendent of Elementary Leadership.

Baumann and Patterson are both seasoned educators and established campus leaders with experience in a broad range of educational settings over the course of a combined 39 years of serving students and their families.

Michelle Bauman—Principal, Walker Elementary

head shot of Michelle BaumannBaumann brings 24 years of experience to her new role as principal of Walker Elementary. For the past eight years, she has served as the principal of Reuben Johnson Elementary and for four years before that, she served as assistant principal at Reuben Johnson under Suzy Woodard.

“Michelle Baumann is a leader that values relationships and puts students at the center of every decision,” said Assistant Superintendent of Elementary Leadership Melanie Raleeh. “Her proven track record as an instructional leader in McKinney ISD is well known throughout the district. She has made a significant impact at Reuben Johnson Elementary serving as a campus leader for 12 years. Ms. Baumann will lead Walker Elementary in the pursuit of ensuring all students perform at high levels.”

Baumann began her career in 1999 in Bryan ISD as a Pre-K teacher and later worked in Driscoll ISD and Cypress-Fairbanks ISD. Along the way, she served in Pre-K, 1st and 2nd grade as a classroom teacher and as a behavior intervention specialist. She arrived at Reuben Johnson in 2007 as a 4th grade teacher, and for two years, Baumann was the school’s response to intervention specialist before moving into campus leadership as the school’s assistant principal in 2011.

During her time as an administrator at Reuben Johnson, Baumann has played an instrumental role in shaping the school’s positive culture with many initiatives, including a monthly 5th grade leadership day and student recognition for goal setting and goal achievement. Baumann’s tenure as principal at Reuben Johnson has been marked by data-driven strategies, and she has also served as a principal work group leader.

“I am honored to join the amazing team at Walker Elementary,” said Baumann. “I am committed to collaborating with staff, students, families and community partners as we continue the tradition of excellence through prioritizing safety, providing engaging lessons and promoting a positive school culture. As I complete my 24th year as an educator, with 16 years at Reuben Johnson Elementary, I am excited to extend my leadership journey as a Walker Star!”

Baumann earned her bachelor’s degree in interdisciplinary studies with a specialization in early childhood education from Texas A&M University–Kingsville and her master’s degree in educational administration from Stephen F. Austin University.

Kristen Patterson—Principal, Reuben Johnson Elementary

head shot of PattersonPatterson now moves into the principal role at Reuben Johnson after joining Michelle Baumann’s administrative team in 2022 as assistant principal. She brings 15 years in education to the job, with experience at the elementary and middle school levels, including 5 years as an administrator.

“Mrs. Patterson leads with a joyful heart while upholding high expectations,” said Raleeh. “Her diverse experience in educational leadership and close partnership with Ms. Baumann has prepared her to successfully transition into the role of principal. I know her commitment to continuous improvement as well as her collaborative, positive leadership will build on Reuben Johnson’s success and continue to move the school forward.”

Patterson’s career in education launched in Frisco ISD as a 7th grade history teacher. Since then, she’s served in Richardson ISD and Prosper ISD as a teacher, team lead, social studies specialist, instructional coach, and assistant principal. She joined McKinney ISD in 2022 at Reuben Johnson as an assistant principal on Baumann’s campus administrative team. In that role, she has provided instructional leadership, and she guided the campus wide planning and launch of the school’s 2023-2024 House System. In response to school data assessment, Patterson led a math instruction initiative at the school. Now, she takes the next step in her career as an educational leader.

“It is such an honor to be named principal of Reuben Johnson Elementary and to continue to serve the students, staff, and families I hold so dear,” said Patterson. “I am a proud Johnson Jaguar, and I am excited to continue to build upon the traditions, relationships and high expectations we have at RJE.”

Patterson earned her bachelor of arts degree in maritime studies at Texas A&M University and her master’s degree in educational administration from Concordia University.

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