Walla Walla School District officials today announced two candidates have been identified as contenders for the Edison Elelementary School principal position.

Jason Olson began his career in education as a middle school Spanish teacher, spending six years teaching Spanish at Valor Middle School in Woodburn, Ore. He later served as student services specialist at the middle school for two years and was then promoted to assistant principal, where he served for four years. Olson then worked as an elementary principal at a dual language school in Hillsboro before moving to the West Linn-Wilsonville area south of Portland, where he has since served in various elementary and middle school teaching and coordinator roles.

John Paul, “JP,” Richards is the director of Human Resources in the Three Rivers School District in Grants Pass, Ore. Before that he worked in the Tillamook, Ore., school district as director of English Language Development before becoming elementary principal.

Richards also worked in Tillamook as a high school vice principal and principal. Before entering administration, he taught Spanish for eight years.

Public sessions to meet both candidates are scheduled for Thursday at 3:30 and 4 p.m. in the Edison library.

Attendees are asked to complete candidate feedback cards and be present for both candidate sessions. Interpreting services will be available.

Julie Perron, who leads the school now, will become the district’s director of bilingual education in July.

Sheila Hagar can be reached at sheilahagar@wwub.com or 526-8322.

Sheila Hagar has written for the Walla Walla Union-Bulletin since 1998. Sheila covers education in the Walla Walla Valley. She also writes a column, Home Place, usually highlighting family life and slices of local life.