Gilbert Public Schools board appoints new Highland High principal

Brian Yee
Greenfield Junior High School Principal Brian Yee addresses the Gilbert Public Schools governing board Feb. 15 after his appointment as Highland High School principal for the 2022-23 school year. (Screen capture from YouTube)

Greenfield Junior High School Principal Brian Yee addresses the Gilbert Public Schools governing board Feb. 15 after his appointment as Highland High School principal for the 2022-23 school year. (Screen capture from YouTube)

Gilbert Public Schools’ governing board appointed a district junior high principal to become Highland High School's next principal on Feb. 15.

Brian Yee, the principal at Greenfield Junior High School, will leave that post after 10 years to take over the Highland job next school year after the board’s 4-0 vote on the appointment. Board Member Bill Parker was absent from the meeting.

Prior to Greenfield, Yee had served as Highland Junior High School's principal.

“I have grown through [students’, parents’ and staff’s] support and through their kindness and care that everyone has given me,” Yee said in reflecting on his time at Greenfield. “And they have prepared me for this next chapter in my career. When I shared with them yesterday the news, I let them know there was only one school in the district, one school in the state, that I would ever consider leaving for, and it was only Highland High School.”

During public comment, two community members asked that the board put a pause on the appointment to get better input from parents. However, those comments inspired a string of community members to speak in support the appointment.


Board Member Jill Humpherys, who moved for the appointment, also endorsed Yee after making her motion.

Yee replaces Melinda Murphy, who was appointed in December to be GPS’ director of professional growth and development beginning in the 2022-23 school year.

Insurance premiums

The board also approved an increase to district employees’ medical and dental insurance premiums. The medical premiums will go up 1%, but dental premiums will go up a little more than 8% due to the dental program being underfunded the past two years, Talent Management Assistant Superintendent Shawn McIntosh said.

That increase equals about $1.67 per pay period for employee-only dental insurance, according to the district’s rate grid.

The district will have one “medical premium” holiday, in which the employee benefit trust will pay one pay day’s worth of medical premiums during the fiscal year. Business Services Assistant Superintendent Bonnie Betz said it was because of the health of the trust that the district was able to offer the holiday.
By Tom Blodgett

Editor, Gilbert

Raised in Arizona, Tom Blodgett has spent more than 30 years in journalism in Arizona and joined Community Impact Newspaper in July 2018 to launch the Gilbert edition. He is a graduate of Arizona State University, where he served as an instructional professional in the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication from 2005-19 and remains editorial adviser to The State Press, the university's independent student media outlet.