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School Leadership

Principal's Welcome: Independence Elementary STEM

I am absolutely thrilled to extend a warm welcome to you as the Principal of Independence Elementary STEM. It's an honor to have your family join our vibrant school community, and I'm excited about the enriching journey we're embarking on together.

My passion for education and student success has led me to the role of Principal after years of teaching and leadership experience.  I truly enjoy creating structures and nurturing a school culture where students can thrive and find success not only academically, but in all aspects of their lives. 

I also take immense pride in the kindness and positivity that define our school culture, known as the Hornet Way. Additionally, our achievements in STEM programming and recognition as a PBIS Sustaining Exemplar School in Minnesota showcase our commitment to excellence.

My goal for Indy STEM is that our students truly experience a different education here which prepares our students for careers that don't even exist yet.  Regardless of where life takes our students, my goal is not only to provide rigorous instruction and learning opportunities in all areas, but to lay the foundation for students to know how to effectively collaborate and communicate, and to be creative and critical thinkers so they find success in whatever path they choose.  We are dedicated to preparing students for future careers by instilling essential skills of collaboration, communication, creativity, and critical thinking.

What makes Big Lake truly special is the strong sense of community, dedicated teachers, and the kindness displayed by students and staff. I feel privileged to be part of this community and to be a part of your family’s success and happiness at Indy STEM. We are delighted to have you join us!

—Principal Deavel

Meet Principal Deavel: Professional Experience

  • Indy Principal, Big Lake Schools, since 2019
  • Assistant Principal, 5 years
  • Math Consultant for Serve MN, 7 years
  • Instructional Coach/Gifted and Talented Coordinator, Achievement & Integration Coordinator, 1 year

  • Curriculum Specialist, 7 years

  • Elementary/Middle School Teacher, 9 years

Jona Deavel
Scott Pierce