Johnston High School - 6500 NW 100th St, Johnston, IA

The Black & White

Johnston High School - 6500 NW 100th St, Johnston, IA

The Black & White

Johnston High School - 6500 NW 100th St, Johnston, IA

The Black & White

Get to Know Superintendent Dr. Nikki Roorda


On October 25th, 2023, Dr. Nikki Roorda was named the new permanent superintendent of the Johnston Community School District. Dr. Roorda was named Interim Superintendent following the resignation of Laura Kacer at the end of the 2022-2023 school year. 


“It was a lifelong dream, so every day I get to live my dream.” Dr. Roorda said.


Dr. Roorda isn’t new to Johnston. She worked at Heartland AEA as a Regional Administrator, prior to becoming the Executive Director of Teaching and Learning in Johnston, followed by Associate Superintendent. 


“Just having been here now, the passion that teachers have for kids, just the caliber of our students, we have great students, so it makes me really proud, it’s a good community,” Dr. Roorda said.


During her time as Superintendent, Dr. Roorda has a few plans for the district. The first one being a curriculum review for almost all courses. 


“Some of our courses haven’t been looked at in 15 years and times have changed, course offerings may have changed along with the materials that we use, so that’s really important to me.” Dr. Roorda said. 


Continuing to build a positive climate and culture within the district is also at the top of her priority list. 


“ I want to build a good liaison between the schools and the community because the community helps support us by paying taxes, so they know what we are doing and we are listening to feedback from them.” Dr. Roorda said.


Graduates of Johnston have stated that in the past that they felt as if the adults in charge didn’t listen to them. Dr. Roorda plans to change that. 


“… I would like to get a student group going, similar to our ERC (Employee Relations Committee) with our teachers providing us input, it would be students at the high school providing us input about what we can do differently and improve on, for you and by you.” Dr. Roorda said. 


The love for education runs through the family. Her parents and siblings have also spent a long time in the education field.  


“My dad was a coach, a science teacher, and an athletic director. My mom was a school secretary at the high school and then became the superintendent’s secretary, my sister is a teacher in Connecticut, and my brother is an attorney.” Dr. Roorda said. 


However, Dr. Roorda’s path to working in education was little different than most people’s. She spent her life dreaming of becoming a pediatrician. It wasn’t until half way through her first year of medical school that she realized her true passion. 


“… we were in a bio-chem class, I was with my study team, and I was just like ‘I don’t want to do this anymore’. And on my study team, one of my partners was like ‘It’s ok. Let’s just go get some ice cream’. And I’m like ‘This is more than ice cream’.” Dr. Roorda recounts. 


Dr. Roorda’s path to where she is today was not a straight path, but she is excited to serve the district. 


“ I am not a person who needs a lot of accolades, I am a person that puts her nose down, does the work, and tries to do right by people. I think those kinds of actions pay off and people can respect that I am working hard to work for the kids and the community” Dr. Roorda said.

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About the Contributor
Ena Basic
Ena Basic, Staff Writer
Ena Basic is a sophomore who loves to read and write. She is a member of Johnston’s Mock Trial team, TSA, and student council- which prepare her for a possible career in the field of political science, international relations, sports reporting, or marketing. In her free time she likes to spend time with her family, and listen to Taylor Swift.

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