New principal hired for Horizons school

MOHAWK – Joel Asiala has been in education for about 12 years, and now he’s moving forward in his career after being named principal at Horizons Alternative High School.

The Public Schools of Calumet, Laurium & Keweenaw Board of Education approved hiring Asiala on June 29. There were five candidates for the position.

Asiala, who is from South Range, said he worked as a special education and history teacher, as well as the discipline officer at Lake Linden-Hubbell Public Schools for 12 years. He applied for the Horizon’s principal position because he thought it was the “next logical step” for him.

Horizons has an average student population of 50-55 students each year, which Asiala said enables the teachers and principal to have one-on-one contacts with the students who need individual attention.

“I truly enjoy working with students,” he said. “It’s more like a family there.”

Chris Davidson, Calumet High School principal and former Horizons principal, said eight applications were received, and five people were interviewed. None of the applicants were C-L-K employees.

Davidson said Horizons opened in the 2005-06 school year. There have been three different principals during that time. The first principal was Marlene Horton. She was replaced by Davidson. He left to become principal/superintendent at Chassell Township Schools, then moved to principal at CHS. Horton replaced Davidson, and now Asiala is principal.

Horizons is not just for students who may be struggling academically. It also offers a different type of learning environment.

“It’s really for students looking for something different,” he said.

Students aren’t assigned to Horizons, Davidson said.

Davidson said the interview committee was very impressed with Asiala.

“He did an fantastic job answering our questions,” Davidson said.

Darryl Pierce, C-L-K superintendent, said he is pleased Asiala is the new Horizons principal.

“We are extremely excited to have Joel join our staff,” he said. “With his educational background and love of children, he will make an excellent principal at Horizons.”