Going home again
For the last 19 years, Glenn Webb has been a fixture in the St. Croix Central School District: from his five years as a teacher, his 12 years as high school principal and his most recent two years as director of teaching and learning. However, Webb will say goodbye to SCC at the end of July when he takes over full-time as the Elmwood School District 4K-5 principal/Superintendent.
"I wasn't looking for a new job, but I grew up in Elmwood, it is where my family lives now and my wife is a teacher there. My three daughters attend school there as well. We moved back down there four years ago and it was one of those opportunities that just popped up here in mid-May. People came to me to see if I was interested in applying. It was kind of a no-brainer to look at it," Webb said. "It is a great small school, with a lot of great things going on there."
The job, previously held by Dr. Paul Blanford, will take Webb back to the district where he grew up and graduated from in 1993. Although he has spent the last 12 years at Central, Webb and his family have lived in Elmwood the last four years. Webb's wife, Amanda, teaches at Elmwood and their three daughters — Lily, Hailey and Polly — go to school there as well.
"It is definitely tough to leave after 19 years. There are a lot of great people, including kids that are now parents that I've seen through the years, and so many other things I will miss," Webb said. "It is bittersweet and I'll leave a lot of great memories behind, as well as a lot of great people. But, since I'm not going that far, I'll work on keeping some of those connections together through a variety of things."
According to SCC Superintendent Tim Widiker, Webb has made his mark on the district and has been a big part of shaping the identity of SCC and vice versa.
"He has positively influenced thousands of SCC students, staff, parents and community members in those 19 years. We are proud of the work he has done and very happy for his promotion in his hometown," Widiker said. "Personally, I am especially happy that he gets to work in the same school as his wife and daughters, which will allow him to spend even more time with them. I know how much I appreciate that as a husband and father. He is not going far, so we will be able to still visit often and I'm excited to still be able work with him as a fellow superintendent."
Webb feels good about where the district will be when he leaves at the end of July. He feels the district has come a long way from where it was when he started, especially in the reworking of the district standards, finding its essentials and have a good start on standards based grading and reporting.
"I feel things are in good shape and I'm working hard to get everything lined up for the next person to have my position," Webb said. "I think the transition for me should really be smooth since I've had a lot of experience here being in a bigger district than Elmwood. I think all of those things have lended me great experience and have me prepared for my new position."
The one area Webb doesn't have a lot of experience in is the elementary side of things. That being said, even though he hasn't worked directly in that area, he feels his role over the last two years in teaching, learning, curriculum and assessment have positioned him well to take on the new role.
"With that all said, I've got a ton to learn, just like you do any time you move into a new position or a different school," Webb said. "I'm excited about the things I'll learn starting a new position because I've always been a lifelong learner. I'm looking for that new challenge now."
St. Croix Central currently has 19 applicants to fill the director of teaching and learning position, with plans to recommend a candidate to the board of education at it's Aug. 6 meeting. The new candidate would ideally start their new position on Aug. 7.