Becoming the Principal of Liberty High

The Live Wire interviews Justin Colbert about his promotion from Interim Principal to Principal of Liberty.

Justin Colbert was previously the assistant principal from the year Liberty opened in 2017 until the end of the 2019-2020 school year. This school year, 2020-2021, former principal Scott Kibby took on another opportunity in the ICCSD, and Colbert was promoted to Interim Principal of Liberty.

The biggest difference between being an assistant principal and a principal is around the type of work that the jobs require. For example, an assistant principal’s work is extremely task-oriented. On a daily basis, Colbert had a number of different tasks that he had to complete in order to do his job well. Although Colbert still has many daily tasks, the building principal needs to be strategic in the way he does his daily work.

It is important for the principal that they see the big picture and have an understanding of how all the parts of the school worlds together. Another big change for Colbert has been around student discipline. 

“Although I continue to be involved with student discipline issues, these issues are primarily handled by the assistant principals and dean of students,” Colbert said. 

Many people decide to teach or be an educator because they enjoy people, and Colbert loves coming to work, especially for the people, staff, and students.  Colbert enjoys serving students and watching them learn and grow during their time in high school. 

“I enjoy focusing on building and maintaining an environment where students enjoy coming to on a daily basis and can focus on their learning, and building staff also enjoy working here,” Colbert said. Colbert also enjoys serving the staff at Liberty and providing them with the support they need to do their jobs effectively. 

This year, the administration has focused a great amount of time and energy on anything COVID-related. The administration wanted to ensure that students and staff were safe, but they also needed to do everything they could to try and maintain academic rigor despite the various challenges the pandemic brought about.

” Liberty High school has quickly turned into a really special place, and I feel fortunate to be apart of this school community”

— Justin Colbert

 In addition to this, Colbert also wanted to model a positive and resilient attitude in regards to the situation we have been dealt with this year. Many of the things that were occurring are out of our control, but we still needed to move forward and continue to learn, grow, and improve. 

“I also wanted to provide as many ‘normal’ high school experiences as safely possible for our students,” Colbert said.