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Changing Faces, Roles At School District
Two newcomers are becoming familiar faces around the Escalon Unified School District, with one here on a short-term basis and one aiming to be here for the long haul.

After some 20 years in the neighboring Riverbank district, Rick John has made the move to serve as the new MOT - Director of Maintenance, Operations and Transportation for Escalon, the same post he held at Riverbank. The position here was vacant last year, with a couple of employees filling the role in a different way, with a lead mechanic in charge at the bus garage and District Maintenance Supervisor James Teixeira also taking on an expanded role.

Now, John will take over the duties and oversee all areas of school operations, transportation and maintenance.

"It's a new opportunity, I wanted to try something new to challenge myself," John said.

While the position is the same he had in Riverbank, John said he is looking forward to working with a new staff.

"I've done this work my entire life, I've built things, developed policies," he pointed out. "They drive buses everywhere but here, there will be new people, new facilities to learn."

John and Escalon Unified School District Superintendent Ron Costa worked together in Riverbank previously, before Costa came over to serve in Escalon.

Meanwhile, serving in an interim role, taking over as the assistant principal for Escalon High, is Joe Terra, coming in to fill the post while a search is under way for Dave Lattig's successor.

"He's a retired administrator from the Newman-Crows Landing School District," Costa said of Terra. "He's a local resident."

Terra - who has been busy attending a variety of sporting events at EHS and handling much of the day-to-day disciplinary action for students -agreed to fill in until the district finds a replacement for former assistant principal Lattig. Terra said he enjoyed being back amongst the students and was happy to serve as long as EHS needed him.

Lattig was named high school principal at Escalon when Jason Maggard tendered his resignation unexpectedly to pursue a career opportunity in Turlock just prior to the start of the new school year.

Terra is likely to have a short-lived tenure, though, as the Escalon school board members were slated to consider an appointment of a new assistant principal at their meting last night, Tuesday, Sept. 6, scheduled after The Times went to press.

Costa said they planned to post the job in-house first to see what type of response they got from qualified candidates already in the district. It's anticipated that Lattig's replacement will come from the ranks of current school employees.

The item was on the agenda for the Sept. 6 meeting, under 'action items' and was listed as 'Consider appointment of an Assistant Principal for Escalon High School.' While the appointment was due under action items, discussion of the pending appointment was anticipated at a closed session of the board at 6 p.m., prior to the regular meeting session starting at 7 p.m.