BY RICK WRIGHT –
From a career in coaching to progressing to administrative roles, Dewayne Taylor, the new Principal and Athletic Director at Cossatot River High School, is a man devoted to helping students reach their full potential. “I’m excited to be here,” said Taylor. “We had a good opening morning. Most of these kids I’ve known since being the Wickes Elementary Principal for the past six years.”
Taylor is entering his 23rd year overall in this school system and 12th year as an administrator. “I was the principal at Umpire, prior to being the Wickes Elementary Principal,” said Taylor. “I’ve been in the Cossatot River system for 21 years.”
Taylor received his Bachelor Degree at the University of Ozark at Clarksville and his Masters Degree at Texas A&M. Taylor is originally from Scranton, Arkansas but was born in Longbeach California, living there until he was about seven years old when the family moved back to Arkansas, which is where his dad’s family is from.
“I coached at Lamar and at Ashdown, at Wickes and at Cossatot River as the baseball coach. I think I’ve coached all 23 years of my career,” said Taylor.
Taylor has coached all these years up to this current position as Principal of CRHS. “It will be different, but I’ll still be at all the games.” said Taylor. “We think we have around 420 students this year at Cossatot River High School. We won’t know exactly until we see how many don’t come back and how many new ones show up. Close to the number of students the system had last year.”
“The main thing of any goal is to make sure when your students come to school they feel safe and secure and that we offer them as much as we can,” said Taylor. “My goal is to, in general, make our students well rounded people when they leave. You just want to play a part in that, kind of shaping kids. Hopefully, we can do that and be a positive in their lives.”
Taylor has been married to Amber who is a nurse at Mena Regional Health System, in the ICU unit, for 19 years. The Taylors have two children, Abby a senior at Cossatot River High School and Pate who is a seventh grader this year. Abby is involved in FFA, and is a state delegate in FFA for this year. She enjoys showing animals, showing lambs, goats and pigs and she has a little bit of each. Abby hopes to earn a degree in Agriculture when she goes to college. Pate also shows animals but is mainly into sports, baseball, basketball and soccer.
“The seniors now were sixth graders when I came to Wickes Elementary,” said Taylor. “If you go all the way back from seniors to first graders, I’ll have had all of those kids at one point and time.”
“I taught mainly science classes and some P.E. classes over the years,” said Taylor. “I taught life science, earth science, biology, AP biology and physical science.”
This is the fourth year of the existence of Cossatot River High School and under the leadership of Principal Dewayne Taylor and his staff the future is bright for the kids of south Polk County.