After spending 33 years as a staple to education in the Dodge City community, Jacque Feist is retiring as principal of Dodge City High School upon the conclusion of the 2020-2021 school year.
Feist has served Unified School District 443 as a teacher, an administrator, a coach and mentor for many students and staff.
“I think I’m in a point in my family’s and in my extended family’s life, that I want to be able to enjoy their company,” said Feist.
She has family in Nebraska, outside of Seattle and on the east coast that she looks forward to seeing, as well as helping her parents should they need it.
Feist said she is not done working in service, but she does not know what she wants to do yet and plans to take an extended stress-free hiatus to figure out the rest of her life.
Feist began her year tenure as principal of Dodge City High School in 2000, when the facility was still located at 1601 1st Ave., the current location of Comanche Middle School.
When the, then, new high school was built at 2201 W. Ross Blvd in 2001, a decision originally made to accommodate the growing number of students, Feist continued her tenure as principal and has up to now.
“When I was in high school, I wasn’t really sure what I wanted to do, but I thought I was pretty good at accounting,” said Feist. “I liked accounting but then I found out that accountants kind of sit behind a desk, and I don’t sit very well.”
Feist graduated from Claflin High School in 1984 and went on to play college softball and earn her Associate’s degree at Barton County Community College.
Upon transferring to Kansas State University and graduating with a Bachelor’s degree in Education in 1988, Feist moved to Dodge City to begin her career as a social studies teacher, assistant basketball and track coach.
“I liked school when I was in school and I say that in the sense that I liked what school provided for kids,” said Feist. “I really liked chemistry and I thought I could be a chemistry teacher, but then I found out I had to pass calculus in college.”
In 1993, she became the first DCHS head softball coach.
She went on to earn her Master’s degree from Fort Hays State University in 1995 and was named Kansas Master Teacher of the Year in 1995-96.
Feist became assistant principal at DCHS in 1997 and then associate principal in 1999, before going onto her longest serving occupation as head principal.
Principal Jacque Feist’s awards during her tenue include:
Serving on the KSHSAA Board of Directors from 1997-2003.
Kansas Principal of Year in 2010.
Recipient of the KSHSAA Governor’s Award in 2015.
She has overseen expansions to the DCHS that include the Fine Arts department, the indoor physical education facility and the outdoor track facility, among other updates.
“My hope is that what is currently happening at Dodge City High School, which I contribute just a small percent, is that everyone in that building. makes things happens and brings life to teaching kids,” said Feist. “My hope is that continues.”
Feist will continue to call Dodge City home after she retires, out of love for the community.