Award Year: 2018

Willard Central Elementary School

2625 North Farm Road 101
Springfield, MO, 65802-6457

(471) 831-4440

Dr. Shane Medlin, Principal at time of Nomination

Title I School

Willard R-II School District

School Website

School FaceBook


Together we are Learning, Leading, Leaving a Legacy.

Student Demographics
  • Black/African American: 1%
  • White: 92%
  • Hispanic: 4%
  • Two or more races: 3%
  • ELL: 5%
  • Economically Disadvantaged: 52%
Our Willard Central Family...Learning, Leading, Leaving a Legacy

Our Willard Central Family...Learning, Leading, Leaving a Legacy

Located just outside Springfield, Missouri, Willard Central Elementary serves the unique combination of a small town and mid-sized city creating a family feel that sets them apart from others. The Willard Central family philosophy is evident at the start of each day with Community Time. For 15 years, this student-led assembly has celebrated student and teacher successes while offering a shared experience for all-school learning while connecting as a school family.

Building upon the focal point of culture, Central embarked on the Leader in Me process in 2015. True to their focus on leadership, ALL Willard Central students and staff members serve in a leadership role. From public speaking to grounds and landscaping teams, students apply for leadership roles to grow and serve in areas of interest. Students also take ownership over their learning through the goal setting process tracking individual, class, grade level and school wide goals. From academic goals to personal goals around fitness or learning to tie their shoes, all students identify strategies and monitor their progress toward reaching their goals. This ownership of learning and leading in their own school has created a unique culture of respect and trust focused on growing the whole child. Recently designated as a Leader in Me Lighthouse School, Willard Central's leadership impact is growing beyond the school walls as students are becoming leaders in their families and community while serving as a model for other schools across southwest Missouri.