Kremmling " Conversation with … Paul Reece, West Grand interim superintendent
November 10, 2008
Paul Reece, who has more than three decades of experience in education, is happy to step up as interim superintendent of West Grand School District in Kremmling, Colorado.
His objective is to provide support to principals, staff and the West Grand Board of Education.
“I’m not looking to make any huge changes,” he added.
Reece grew up in Southwestern Kansas but has made Colorado his home since 1957. He moved to Kremmling in 1969. Before his move he taught seventh and eighth grades in the San Luis Valley for a year.
His son Jason and wife Karen also live in Kremmling; while another son, Gage, lives in Basalt.
What is your experience in Kremmling?
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I moved to Kremmling in the summer of 1969. I taught fourth and fifth grade here, and in the high school my wife taught socials studies, and was the physical education teacher. She coached all girls sports: volleyball, gymnastics, basketball and track.
I was a teacher and administrator until I retired in 2001. I was the West Grand Elementary principal for 27 years, and a teacher for six years.
What was your first thought when asked to come out of retirement and work as superintendent?
Surprised ” I didn’t realize our superintendent was leaving, and that they were going to try to finish the year with an interim superintendent.
I guess pleased to know that they would have the confidence in me to think that I could do that until the end of the school year. I talked to my wife, and we made the decision together.
Why do you think they chose you?
They probably had confidence in me because I knew all of the people on their board. I knew the community, and a lot of the people in the school district. I think they thought I could help them continue until the end of the school year.
Are you getting used to being back?
I’ve been retired since 2001, so I’m trying to get back on schedule and get caught up with the issues that are going on at school.
How have the first two weeks gone?
I think it’s going well. And I feel I have a lot of support from the school board. A lot of community members have come in to say they are here to help.
Has the transition gone smoothly?
Everyone is working together. Martha Schake, district financial officer, and Linda Haynes, district secretary, have really done a super job, (as well as) our board members, building administrators and staff members to help us get through the end of the year. Everyone has pulled together as a team to say, “We’re going to make it and finish the school year in great shape.”
What is the most challenging part of your job?
One of the big challenges we have right now is looking for a new superintendent … maintaining and continuing to improve programs that we have. Fire restoration will be ongoing for a while (at West Grand High School). We’re trying to get that together so we can get kids back into those rooms (metal shop, wood shop, and computer labs.) Electrical is not back to where we need it yet.
Are you enjoying being back?
It’s great to be back working with a group. When you retire you kind of step out of a group you worked with for a long time. It’s really enjoyable to be around the schools and involved with school issues and part of the school system again. I enjoy being around the kids and staff members.
” Katie Looby covers government and education for the Sky-Hi Daily News. You may reach her at 887-3334 ext. 19601 or firstname.lastname@example.org.