Parkview Elementary students will be greeted by a new administrator this fall after Wednesday’s announcement that Principal Kelly Sobaski will retire at the end of the current term.
Sobaski, who has been principal at Parkview since 2003 and has worked in the building since its doors opened in 1990, announced her retirement to Sedalia School District 200 officials and Parkview faculty members on Wednesday afternoon.
“There were mixed emotions among staff,” Sobaski told the Democrat on Wednesday evening. “We have been together for a long time. We have worked hard as a staff. They are a wonderful group of students and a wonderful staff. I always say ‘It is a great place to raise a learner.’ I know they will continue to make a difference in education here at Parkview.”
A graduate of Smith-Cotton High School, Sobaski earned an associate’s degree from State Fair Community College in 1984 and a bachelor of science degree in Elementary Education from the University of Central Missouri in 1988. She also holds a master’s degree in Elementary Administration (1999) and an education specialist degree in Administration (2004) from William Woods University. She currently is pursuing a doctorate in Education Administration from William Woods. Prior to becoming principal, she served as a University of Missouri Fellowship Lead Mentor Teacher from 2000 to 2003, and as a fourth-grade teacher at Parkview from 1990 to 2000 and at Whittier Elementary from 1988 to 1990.
Superintendent Harriet Wolfe said in a district press release announcing the retirement: “Kelly brought a strong instructional leadership component to our leadership team. She was a cohesive team player, and her heart was where every administrator’s heart needs to be, and that is with the students. She is all about what is going to help the kids.”
“It just felt like it was time,” Sobaski said of her decision. “We have done so many things in the Sedalia 200 district. The changes in education have been phenomenal and we continue to see great changes. I’ve never really gone to work, I’ve gone to school for 25 years. It’s just time to experience something else in life.”
Among the changes Sobaski has seen is a change in educational philosophy spurred by continuing research into how children learn and how schools can maximize the potential of all students.
“When I started teaching 25 years ago we taught to the middle. Now we look at individual children and how to motivate them and have every child see academic success. That is huge,” she said.
Sobaski said her last day with the district will be June 30. After that she plans to refocus on her education and enjoy time with her family.
“I have been working on my doctoral degree, so this means I will be able to do the much-needed research that goes with that, and I will be teaching some college classes and will get to enjoy time with my grandchildren and my family,” she said.
Sobaski and her husband, Tom, have two children and three grandchildren.