KALISPELL — A longtime educator and principal in the Kalispell School District started his new role Wednesday as superintendent.
This marks Hill's 20th year working in the school district.
“At one point in my life I was a custodian in a school, so I can actually say I’ve been everything from the custodian to the superintendent,” said Hill.
Hill replaces outgoing superintendent Mark Flatau, who officially retired on Tuesday.
Hill said his first priority is coming up with a plan to keep students and staff safe this upcoming school year.
As of now, Hill says the plan is to have in-person learning when classes start on August 26th.
“The priority for the board is to be back with in-person instruction in the fall, we think that’s very doable, but it will look a little different than what we’ve had in the past,” said Hill.
Hill says he has been in contact with superintendents across the Flathead Valley coming up with similar plans for the upcoming school year.
He said Kalispell schools are set to open for in-person learning if Montana remains in phase 2 of Governor Bullock's reopening.
Hill says the school district has plans in place if Governor Bullock enforces stricter guidelines down the road.
“Things can change on a minute’s notice, the Governor can reorder the schools close again and we would be back to remote instruction, but that is not the plan at this point to start that way,” said Hill.
Outgoing Superintendent Mark Flatau thinks Hill is the perfect fit for Kalispell schools.
“He knows the culture, he knows the community; he will do great, I’ve said that he’s much smarter than I, he will take Kalispell to the next level,” said Flatau.
Hill is a graduate of Polson High school and received his Masters in Educational Leadership from the University of Montana.