LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- The principal of Atherton High School, Thomas Aberli, is leaving the school to take over Highland Middle School for two years.

The decision was made Wednesday, effective immediately, by each schools SBDM council.

The previous principal of Highland Middle, Steve Heckman, resigned yesterday.

Aberli wrote a letter to parents and students of Highland Middle school, which read, in part:

Dr. Hargens and the Highland Middle School SBDM Council have agreed to allow me to be the interim principal at Highland Middle School on temporary reassignment for two years to make progress in building this dual-school relationship and cultivating a shared school culture and common academic experience between the two schools. Through a Memorandum of Agreement, I will officially return exclusively to Atherton upon conclusion of the 2017-2018 school year. 

He goes on to say that he'll return to Atherton full-time after the two years are up.

This is the first time JCPS Superintendent Donna Hargens has used her authority to appoint a principal since a new law took effect July 1 giving her the right to do so. She released a statement Wednesday:

“Dr. Aberli is a highly skilled administrator and educator, and we could not have hoped for a better outcome for this opening. This is exactly the scenario we imagined when we championed this law, and why this legislation is so important – to give our school district the flexibility to help place proven leaders in schools. I’m grateful for the out-of-the-box thinking and bipartisan support in making this possible.” 

Aberli was recently named the Kentucky Administrator of the Year.

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