The Westby Area School District Board of Education unanimously approved the hiring of Robert “Bob” Bothe as its new high school principal beginning with the 2018-2019 school year. Bothe will replace current Westby Area High Principal Karl Stoker who is retiring at the end of the 2017-2018 school year.
Bothe (pronounced Booty) is currently employed at Clintonville High School, where he has worked since 2016. At Clintonville, Bothe is the Associate Principal for Clintonville High School as well as the Activities/Athletic Director.
Clintonville is located in Waupaca County, with a population of approximately 5,000. Bothe said he is anxious to move back to the Driftless Region of the state after spending 16 years employed in the Hillsboro School District before relocating to Clintonville.
While employed at Hillsboro, Bothe taught social studies and was the Alternative Education Instructor for the Hillsboro School District. As the Alternative Education Instructor he worked with middle and high school students to ensure they received a well-rounded education directing high school students who might have otherwise not graduated towards earning a GED Option #2 diploma.
The GEDO #2 program allows authorized school districts to use the GED test battery to measure proficiency in lieu of high school credit for students enrolled in an alternative education program. A student who passes the GED tests and completes the other requirements for graduation is entitled to the traditional high school diploma.
Bothe also spent years coaching extracurricular activities while in Hillsboro including basketball, baseball, and 15 years as a football referee. He also started a Hillsboro American Legion/Jr. Legion summer baseball teams and coached summer recreation baseball and softball programs.
Bothe is the son of a fifth generation dairy farmer from Eden, Wisconsin. After graduating from Campbellsport High School he attended UW-Fond du Lac earning an Associate’s Degree. He earned his Bachelor’s Degree at UW-Whitewater, with majors in history, broad field social studies, geography, and education. He went on to UW-La Crosse earning he Master’s Degree in Education and Professional Development. Bothe continued his Education at UW-River Falls earning his Alternative Education license and Marian University in Fond du Lac where he received his Principal and Director of Instruction license, with Masters in Educational Leadership.
On Tuesday, May 15, Bothe told the Westby Times his entire family is excited about the vast opportunities the Westby Area School District has to offer them as a whole.
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“We are hoping the transition back to western Wisconsin is a smooth one and we look forward to building new relationships and continuously growing existing ones,” Bothe said.
“I am looking forward to working with newly hired District Administrator Steve Michaels as we both transition our professional and personal lives into new educational leadership roles helping the staff, students, and other stakeholders continue to provide growth in the Westby Area School District communities,” he added
Bothe’s wife, Kara, is employed as a cosmetologist in Hillsboro. The couple have two children, Brooklyn (grade 6) and Breyer (grade 2). The socially active family enjoys the outdoors and volunteering. They are planning to relocate into the Westby Area School District.
Bothe was selected from a field of 43 candidates. A total of five applicants were interviewed by a large committee consisting of administration, staff, parents and public representatives.
Westby Area School District Board of Education President Gerry Roethel said the board is looking forward to having Bothe on board.
“Speaking on behalf of the school board we hope Bob has a long and successful career in the Westby Area School District and we look forward to working with him for years to come,” Roethel said.
Bothe’s contract with Westby begins on July 1. He will earn $90,000 a year, plus benefits. The negotiated salary is $2,000 more than the district is currently paying outgoing Principal Karl Stoker.
*** Dorothy Robson can be reached at email@example.com or (608) 606-0811.