New SHS principal excited to get started


Dylan Lindly

Brent Leibach will be taking over as SHS principal in the 2014/1015 school year when principal Dirlene Wheeler retires.

Next August, Brent Leibach will take over as principal at Sheridan High School. The past 32 years Leibach has dedicated his life to helping students succeed. He started by teaching for five years in Montana and then went on to become a high school principal in Montana. When he came to Sheridan, Leibach started out as an assistant principal at the junior high school and then moved on to become principal at Highland Park Elementary, where he currently presides.

“I’m really excited to be part of the great thing you have going on up there at the high school,” said Leibach, “I want to continue the excellence that’s already in place.” Looking ahead to next year, its obvious that Dirlene Wheeler, the current principal of SHS, has left an excellent system in place. She has practiced an open door policy and as many know, she is rarely found in her office. Leibach wants to continue this practice. He believes the job of a principal is to be on the same team as the students and teachers and wants to maximize the success at SHS.

Already, many rumors about Leibach have been circulating around the high school. Students believe that he plans on instituting new policies that wouldn’t be extremely popular at the school, including taking away cell phones and changing the dress code. Leibach wanted to take advantage of the interview to put these rumors to rest and ease the concerns of some students, “I don’t plan on going into the high school and start taking away people’s cell phones. I don’t have some agenda in place.” He went on to explain that all he wants to do is listen to teachers and students and then minimize any distractions in the classroom.

Of course, anytime there is a change in staff, students should have some concerns about the new individual who can have an immense impact on their life. A few things for students to keep in mind though is that Leibach isn’t planning on coming into the school and changing a bunch of rules. All Leibach wants to do is “listen and watch and figure out how to make this thing better.”

Also, teachers, while not as vocal as students, should have some questions regarding their new boss. Leibach plans on meeting with the staff on Wednesday, March 5th during a staff meeting after school. But Leibach wants teachers to know, “Teaching is one of the most important jobs in our country and we’re all professionals. I want teachers to know that the only way to get this thing done is together and that this all starts and ends with student learning.”

“All my career I’ve loved the next challenge,” said Leibach, “I think I’m ready to take the next step.” Leibach is extremely excited about heading to the high school next year. The 2014-2015 school year at SHS will find a motivated, emotional principal who can’t wait to make a positive impact. He will have the opportunity to take the reins of an established and accomplished school with an excellent record in both activities and academics. Leibach’s natural energy and charisma will help keep SHS on its positive track next year. The hope is, changing principals won’t cause the high school to loss a step.

The final thing to know about Leibach is that he believes in a very structured school with good communication. He plans to enter next year with an open mind and an open door.