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Jungmann Named 2019 Pearce Recipient

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Springfield Superintendent Honored By School Administrators Association


The Missouri Association of School Administrators (MASA) has selected Dr. John Jungmann, Superintendent of the Springfield Public Schools, as the recipient of the annual Robert L. Pearce Award for 2019.  A committee of his peers selected Jungmann.  Each of the eight MASA districts nominated a superintendent for the award.


Dr. Jungmann received his Bachelor of Science Degree from Missouri Southern State University.  He attained his Master of Science in Secondary Education Degree from Southwest Missouri State University (now Missouri State University). He received his Specialist in Education Degree from Southwest Missouri State University, and his Doctor of Education Degree from the University of Arkansas.


Dr. Jungmann began his administrative career as a principal at Monett Middle School and continued at Monett as the superintendent.  Dr. Jungmann also served as deputy superintendent and later as superintendent at the Liberty Public Schools before taking the superintendent’s position at the Springfield Public Schools (SPS).


Dr. Jungmann shared that his philosophy of education is centered on project-based environments – a mindset that started when he was encouraged to serve on the student newspaper in high school.  Jungmann said, “Experiences are an essential component that helps students make meaning and connect classroom to life.  This idea has resulted in the expansion of the Springfield Public Schools’ EXPLORE program which ensures that students have weekly experiences outside of the traditional classroom.”


Like other school districts, Dr. Jungmann discovered that many students were under-resourced and under-represented in the SPS.  The district made changes and committed to provide all students with equitable access to modern tools.  Part of the push for technology can be seen in the IGNITE program which has equalized technology for all students grades 3-12. SPS is seeing improvement in all grades in the Missouri Assessment Program (MAP) area of English Language Arts versus the state averages in part because of the IGNITE Program.


Communications and community engagement have been a vital part of SPS since Dr. Jungmann arrived.  During his first year he undertook a 90-day listening tour of the district and community.  From that experience he developed the Envisioning Excellence process that further engaged community members.  IN 2018, A community taskforce on facilities began its work, and there are a variety of other engagement practices that Jungmann and his district have implemented to keep the community involved and informed.


Dr. Jungmann believes that the central issue facing Missouri Public Education today is the expansion of choice opportunities for students across the state.  Jungman stated, “Missouri Districts must show they are ready and willing to innovate and successfully compete with those who would like to see public education tax funds flow to charter, private or for-profit virtual schools. The Springfield Public Schools and more than 140 other schools have positioned ourselves to compete with the implementation of the LAUNCH project which provide virtual course access that delivers high quality instruction created and developed by Missouri educators.”



Dr. Jungmann is a Past-President of the Missouri Association of School Administrators (MASA).  Jungmann is a member of the American Association of School Administrators (AASA), where he serves as a Governing Board Member. He has also served on the AASA Superintendent Certification Program and the Education Research Development Institute.


Dr. Jungmann is active in the Springfield Area Chamber of Commerce, the GOCAPS program, Community Partnerships of the Ozarks, the Ozark Regional YMCA and the P-20 Council of the Ozarks.


The Pearce Award includes a monetary award to the recipient and a scholarship for a student in the district of the award winner.


Jungmann is the 33rd recipient of the prestigious Robert L. Pearce Award.


Other 2019 Pearce Award Nominees, including their school districts and MASA District:


Roger Barnes, Chillicothe R-II School District (Northwest)

Robert Brinkley, Odessa R-VII School District  (West Central)

Kenneth Cook , Malden R-I School District  (Southeast)

Jacque Cowherd, Fulton 58 School District  (Northeast)

Eric Knost , Rockwood School District  (Greater St. Louis)

Kari Monsees , Raymore-Peculiar School District  (Greater Kansas City)