Former TMS principal named operations coordinator
By NEAL WAGNER / City Editor
The former principal of Alabaster’s Thompson Middle School will oversee the facilities and some day-to-day operations of the city’s schools after he was named to an Alabaster City Schools central office position.
Jeff Atkins recently was named Alabaster City Schools’ coordinator of operations, and will be in charge of items ranging from building maintenance and construction to daily transportation operations.
Katie Zielinski, the former TMS assistant principal, was named the school’s new principal.
“(Atkins) has an extensive knowledge of how a transportation system works,” said Alabaster School Board member Linda Church. “Having been a building principal for so long, he understands the needs of the principals.”
During a June 17 Alabaster Board of Education meeting, Zielinski said she was excited to take over at TMS, and said this is an “exciting time for Alabaster schools.”
“I am thrilled and excited to have this opportunity,” Zielinski said, noting she has been an assistant principal at TMS for the past five years.
Before coming to Thompson Middle, Zielinski was an administrator at Oak Mountain Middle and Riverchase Middle.
“She is wonderful,” Church said of Zielinski. “We are very fortunate and very blessed to have quality people already in place who can step in and fill these roles.”
Church said Atkins will work closely with the Volkert company, which is conducting several school building renovation projects throughout the city.
Atkins and incoming Alabaster School Superintendent Dr. Wayne Vickers have also “gone through the buildings with a fine-toothed comb” to identify areas in need of repair for the upcoming school year, Church said.
“By having a smaller school district, he will have a higher level of contact with the custodial staff, and can get things addressed more quickly,” Church said.