About thirty people attended the community forum at Tongue River High School Tuesday night, where they had an opportunity to get to know about Marty Kobza, one of three candidates in the running for the Sheridan County School District 1 Superintendent position. Currently he is the Superintendent for Thermopolis in Hot Springs County.
Kobza is a Nebraska native, having grown up on a small farm near a community of about 350 on the Platte River. He attended college in Kansas, working his way up through the education system as a teacher, a principal and then superintendent before moving to Thermopolis three years ago. He tells us why he, his wife and their five children made the move to Wyoming.
He discusses the education issues going through the Wyoming legislature, particularly in the area of accountability.
Of the schools in District 1, Kobza has been very impressed, in particular, he says.
Kobza told the audience that when he arrived in Thermopolis, a lot of healing needed to take place from damage caused by the prior administration. He said establishing trusting relationships and open communication was key to rebuilding the district.
When he came on board, the graduation rate at Hot Springs High School was below 80%; last year it was up to 93%.
He also addressed topics such as parent engagement; accountability; his role within the hierarchy of teacher, principal and administration in dealing with complaints; and collaboration among the school district, business and general communities in building a strong education system.