Wayne Shimko – Secondary Principal
Mr. Wayne Shimko grew up in rural Pennsylvania where his parents were involved in a Christian Camping ministry. He graduated in 1967 from Smethport Area High School. It was in his 10th grade history class that he developed a love for history and a desire to be a teacher. He attended Bob Jones University where he earned his teaching credentials and a Bachelor’s degree in history. He married his high school sweetheart in his senior year of college and the newly married couple started their first teaching assignment that fall at Temple Heights Christian School in Tampa. The following years were spent teaching and working in church ministries.
In 1971, Wayne and the family moved to St. Petersburg to teach Bible and Government at Northside Christian School. Serving as a class advisor and later as the school guidance counselor, he was encouraged by the school’s headmaster to pursue graduate work in educational leadership. He earned his Master of Science degree from Nova University in 1990. He began serving as the high school principal in 1989 and had the joy during that time to present his two children with their high school diplomas. In 1997, Dr. Sligh and Mr. Wiechmann convinced him to come to LCS. A unique part of the LCS administrator’s role was to teach at least one class and also be credentialed to drive a school bus. Wayne fit in with both. His teaching assignment started with an 8th grade Bible class but changed to United States History in 2000 when the school started an Advanced Placement program. He would tell you that one of his highlights every day is being in the classroom with students talking about American history.
Wayne’s wife of 40 years, Connie, is a registered nurse and works with Heath Services for Polk County Schools. They have a son, Kirby and his wife Celeste, who live in Boston. Their daughter, Heather, and her husband, Dan, live in Chicago with Wayne’s two grandchildren, Teagan and Avery. Connie and Wayne worship at First Baptist at the Mall in Lakeland where he enjoys teaching the Bible in an adult Sunday School class. He has been at LCS since 1997. Wayne’s desire is to help establish an educational environment where every LCS student can pursue “excellence” which he defines as discovering their God given talents and using those talents to the best of their ability to glorify the Lord.