New assistant principal settling in at MCHS |

New assistant principal settling in at MCHS

Bridget Manley

David Grabowski was recently named interim assistant principal at Moffat County High School. He is shown above in his new office Monday afternoon at MCHS. Grabowski, a math teacher for 14 years, is temporarily giving up teaching while he fills his new role.

After nearly two months, Moffat County High School now has a full roster of administrators.

David Grabowski, former MCHS math teacher, started as the school's interim assistant principal Jan. 23. He replaces Travis Jensen, a former assistant principal who resigned from the school district in December 2011.

Grabowski, a veteran teacher with more than a decade of classroom experience, was settling into his new role Monday afternoon after his first week on the job.

"The responsibilities are totally different than classroom responsibilities," he said. "I'm making adjustments, and it's a great challenge — a fun challenge.

"After 14 years in the classroom this is … new and exciting."

Grabowski, who is in his sixth year of teaching at MCHS, has never sat in an administrator's chair before, but he has the education necessary for the role. He earned his master's degree of arts and education from Colorado Mesa University in December 2011 and has a principal's license.

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MCHS Principal Thom Schnellinger believes Grabowski brings a strong skill set to the temporary position.

"Mr. Grabowski is extremely well organized," Schnellinger said. "He's interested in the school climate and has been interested in that for a number of years. … And he's always willing to put a good foot forward or to lend a hand in those times when we've needed it."

Grabowski wasn't the sole teacher in the running for the position. A committee of MCHS teachers, staff and administrators selected him from a pool of other internal candidates.

Selecting one person from among a group of "great teacher leaders" was "a difficult decision to come to for the team," Schnellinger said, "but we are … pleased with where we're at and the decision that was made."

Student discipline and supervision, as well as curriculum and teacher evaluation, make up the bulk of Grabowski's responsibilities, Schnellinger said.

His new role as a teacher supervisor prompted Grabowski, 44, to resign his roll as president of the Moffat County Education Association, a local teacher's union.

The association's rules prohibit school administrators from serving as officers in the association "because there (are) conflicts in the roles," Grabowski said.

Moffat County School District administrators plan to open the permanent assistant principal position later, superintendent Joe Petrone said, although he couldn't estimate when the position would be advertised.

"We're hoping that (Grabowski) applies," he said.

In the meantime, Grabowski has traded his math classroom for an office in the administrative hub in the high school's second floor office.

Schnellinger said he hopes to have a long-term replacement in Grabowski's math classroom by the end of the week.

The principal expressed confidence in Grabowski's ability to fill his new role.

"He's a great addition to our team," Schnellinger said. "We're very happy to have him here."

At a glance …

• Moffat County High School math teacher David Grabowski has been named interim assistant principal.

• Grabowski began the new position Jan. 23.

• His duties include student discipline and supervision, as well as curriculum and teacher evaluation.

• MCHS administrators plan to find a long-term replacement to teach Grabowski’s classes by the end of the week.


“I’m making adjustments, and it’s a great challenge — a fun challenge. After 14 years in the classroom this is … new and exciting.”

— David Grabowski, former Moffat County High School math teacher, on his new duties as the school’s interim assistant principal

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