Fort Mill Times

Orchard Park Elementary in Baxter gets new principal July 1

The Fort Mill School District has hired Matthew Johnson of Hendersonville, N.C., as the new principal of Orchard Park Elementary School, the district announced.

Johnson takes over July 1 for retiring OPES Principal Linda Locklier.

This is a return to the Fort Mill School District for Johnson, who taught at Gold Hill Elementary School from 1998 to 2002 and 2003-2004. He also served as the assistant cross-country and track coach at Fort Mill High School from 1999 to 2004.

“We are excited to have Matthew Johnson join the district family as the principal of Orchard Park Elementary School,” Superintendent Chuck Epps said. “His passion for public education and his leadership abilities will be an asset to both the school and the community.”

Johnson is a graduate of Rock Hill’s Winthrop University, where he received a bachelor’s degree in elementary education in 1998, and Western Carolina University, where he earned a master’s in school administration in 2009.

Johnson brings with him seven years of elementary principal experience, where he served as principal at Glenn C Marlow Elementary School and most recently as principal at Atkinson Elementary School, both part of the Henderson County Public School District in North Carolina. Prior to that, he taught elementary school in Henderson and Buncombe County Schools for five years.

“I am thrilled to be joining the Fort Mill community again,” Johnson said.

“I am humbled and blessed to be soon working with the teachers and staff at Orchard Park Elementary School to provide a quality education for the children at that school. I look forward to meeting everyone and working together in the very near future.”