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New superintendent announced for Great Falls Public Schools

GFPS Building
Heather Hoyer
Posted at 10:12 PM, Feb 20, 2024
and last updated 2024-02-21 10:24:28-05

GREAT FALLS — The Great Falls Public Schools Board of Trustees met on Tuesday to decide who will be the next superintendent after Tom Moore steps down at the end of the school year.

The Board of Trustees had interviews with Heather Hoyer and Steven Mayhue for the superintendent position. Hoyer has been involved with the Great Falls Public Schools since 1996, whereas Mayhue is the current superintendent of schools in Froid.

“Both fantastic people, and we would have been proud to have either one,” Gordon Johnson, Chairman for the Great Falls Public Schools Board of Trustees said, “I think what people were impressed with in terms of Mrs. Hoyer is her experience with a double a Montana school.”

While it was stressed that both candidates were more than qualified, the board said that Hoyer’s interview was spectacular.

Heather Hoyer

Trustee Marlee Sunchild explained that she makes you want to work with her, not for her.

“We’re projecting out with our long range plans five years and beyond, and it's very important that a person can recognize what needs to be done, have the experience and the know-how, how to make that happen, but also acknowledge when things don't work and then retrofit them to make them work for our community,” Johnson said.

The motion to extend the offer to Hoyer carried unanimously, as did the motion to offer her the maximum three year term with a starting salary of $175,000.

“I think we're very excited about the future of the Great Falls public schools,” Johnson said, “This whole superintendent search process was a learning experience for all of us, and it made us realize how are for what we have, first of all. But also it gives us a very clear indication of what our potential is for the future.”

The board was happy to have the two candidates, as they felt both would have been great for the position, but overall, it was Hoyer’s connections in Great Falls that made her the preferred candidate.

“Both candidates were very strong. One of the things that Mrs. Hoyer brings to the table is her experience in working with our community,” Johnson said, “We have a lot of really strong community partners that have made us what we are…She's very much in the know and she has great experience in dealing with the players in our community partners.”