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Herald Staff Writer

Wednesday was Fulton Elementary School’s first day of school. New principal Elizabeth “Liz” Peterson, 48, of Fulton, Ill., is excited for the new school year.

Liz is originally from Morris, Ill. From an early age, Liz was interested in education. Her mother and other family members were educators. Liz said she always loved school. She would play school with her dolls. Liz also loved working with children, babysitting and volunteering for youth activities.

Liz has a bachelor’s degree in elementary education for kindergarten through ninth grade and a master’s degree in education administration. During most of her teaching career, she worked at the fifth-grade level. While she worked at a couple of schools, almost 20 years were spent at Saratoga Elementary School located in Morris.

After years as a teacher, Liz was at a point in her career where she wanted to get a master’s degree. The superintendent who first hired her encouraged her to go into education administration. She had assumed several leadership roles during the years and felt she had enough experience. Liz said administration was a perfect fit for her. After she received her degree, Liz went to a local Morris district as the athletic director. She said she has always enjoyed exercising, being outdoors and participating in athletic events. After two years in the position, she returned to the Saratoga school as assistant principal and then principal.

Liz has three children: Matt, Ashley and Sara. Her youngest, Sara, graduated from high school this year. Liz said this felt like a turning point for her. She was looking to relocate and considered the Fulton position. Liz said Fulton reminds her of her own hometown. She is comfortable with the small-town atmosphere she finds in this area.

Liz started at the school on July 1. During this time, she has been preparing everything for the school year. She has studied the schedules to understand daily operations. She has also spent her time introducing herself to members of the community and the staff. She has found the people to be warm, friendly and very helpful.

Liz is excited about the start of the new school year. Her favorite part of being an educator is working with the people to provide a good educational atmosphere. She said the building looks wonderful from all of the work the teachers have done the past week. She also said it is great to see all of the students arriving, excited for the first day of school. Liz is looking forward to getting to know the students better.

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