BROKEN BOW–After interviewing two candidates for the position of superintendent, the Broken Bow School Board made an offer to Darren Tobey on Monday evening.
Board member Pam Holcomb said each candidate was very strong and it was a tough decision to make. Candidates interviewed with breakout groups including students, parents, teachers, administration, members of the community, and classified staff before meeting with the board.
Holcomb said the board met in executive session for about an hour and a half after collecting feedback from each group. A motion passed six to zero to extend the offer to Tobey, which he accepted.
Darren Tobey has worked in the Southern Valley School District (in Oxford, Neb.) for eight years, four as principal and four as superintendent. Tobey and his wife Erica have four children and plan to move to Broken Bow this spring/summer.
“We didn’t take it lightly, it’s an important decision for the school,” Holcomb said.
On December 19, 2017 current Superintendent Tom Bailey resigned effective June 30, saying “It has become apparent that my student centered philosophy is not in-line with the direction that this current board chooses to follow.”
In December, Holcomb told KCNI/KBBN she was saddened but not surprised by Mr. Bailey’s resignation.
“It is very difficult to move our district forward when philosophies clash. I wouldn’t expect him to go against his core educational values. I, personally, believe Mr. Bailey has served our district well and tried to keep things positive and the focus on our students while dealing with a lot of negative situations. I wish him well wherever he goes,” Holcomb said.
Board member J.B. Atkins said Monday was a long day of interviews and a tough decision, but says he is happy with the choice the board made.
“It was like I said, a long, hard process but I think I’m happy with the decision that was made and just ready to move on, so to speak,” Atkins said.
The school board had hired Dr. Virginia Moon to assist with the strategic plan and superintendent search. She presented a list of candidates and the search committee (consisting of board members Tom Osmond, Pam Holcomb, and J.B. Atkins) narrowed down the list to two finalists.
“We had hired Dr. Moon, you know, to help us with our strategic plan and do a lot of other things. And she knows Broken Bow really really well and she knows what we were looking for,” Atkins said.
Atkins said the board’s goal to hire a new superintendent was by early March. He believes the board was fortunate to have strong possibilities in the running and did not think the board could go wrong either way.
A school board work session is scheduled for Monday, March 12.