As part of its inaugural gala event, the Raymore-Peculiar Public School Foundation honored W. Donald Shull, of Raymore, with the first “Partner in Education” award.
The Foundation celebrated growth and achievement at its gala on March 21 at Gregory’s Event Space in Raymore.
President Phil Parke informed the gathering of supporters about the Foundation’s projects and upcoming events.
A highlight of the evening was the presentation of the first “Partner in Education” award to Don Shull, who served as superintendent of the Ray-Pec School District from 1966 to 1984.
Shull, who is well-loved and respected, is the only individual to have one of the district’s schools named after him. The school district more than doubled its enrollment during his time as superintendent, and planning for and managing that growth was a constant issue.
Shull was born in Pettis County in 1928 and moved to Cross Timbers in seventh grade. He graduated from Cross Timbers High School and received his bachelor’s degree from Southwest Missouri State University and his master’s degree from Central Missouri State University.
On April 30, 1950, he married Rose Ann Tull. They have two children, a son, Stanley, and a daughter, Abbe. His daughter and her family attended the dinner event March 21.
Don began his career in education in 1948 at Owsley School, a Hickory County rural school, teaching all eight grades. He then taught at Lookout School in Benton County for two years. His next position was teaching seventh and eighth grades at Preston, where he also coached basketball and softball. He was recruited to Osceola, where for seven years he taught physical education and coached basketball. The following year, he was the principal and counselor. He worked four more years at Osceola as the Superintendent of the district. In 1966, he accepted the position of Superintendent of the Ray-Pec School District, where he served 18 years, guiding the growth of the district from about 1,000 students to more than 2,400.
He is a member of St. Paul’s United Methodist Church, the Lions Club and the Ray-Pec Optimist Club. He was a director of the Community Bank of Raymore. He is a life member of the Raymore Historical Society.
He held executive offices in most educational organizations across the state of Missouri. He was honored as the Outstanding Active Administrator in West Central Missouri in 1981. He was named the Outstanding Administrator for the State of Missouri from the Missouri Interscholastic Press Association and Missouri Journalism Educational Association.
In 1992, the Ray-Pec School District honored him by naming a school after him. His portrait hangs just inside the front entrance.
In 1996, the Missouri Association of School Administrators honored him with the “Outstanding Emeritus Educator Award” for the West Central District. In 1999, at the annual banquet of the Cooperative Conference for School Administrators, he was honored as a Pioneer in Education by then-Commissioner of Education Robert Bartman.