A welcome to Willms: Getting to know West Fork’s new high school principal

Bobby Willms is pictured with her family, including husband Jared, and children Jane (16, not picutred), Grace (15), Carter (9) and Reagan (4). The Willms children will be attending West Fork in the fall. SUBMITTED PHOTO

A new face is joining the ranks of West Fork’s leadership—filling the vacancy left by former high school principal Clyde Tarrence—and she brings with her a whole nest of new Warkhawks.

Dreams of being a teacher brought to life

Bobby Willms, a Wisconsin native, is a family-oriented administrator with almost 15 years’ worth of experience in the educational field. She began her career with a degree from Upper Iowa University and one year of teaching mathematics at Mason City High School. Entering the education field was a life-long dream for Willms. She recalled how she has longed to be a teacher since her own elementary school years, and how teachers from her time as a student inspired her.

“My mom still has my 1st grade book, ‘When I Grow Up I Want to be a Teacher,’” she said. “I was very blessed to have amazing educators throughout my time as a student, and each shaped me into the person I am today.

“I wanted to make a difference in students’ lives just as much as some of my teachers made in mine.”

Willms left MCHS after marrying, for a position as a math and language arts teacher in the Center Point-Urbana district (near Cedar Rapids) and, in her near-decade of time there, also coached speech and theater.

Willms’ expertise doesn’t stop with students, however. She has spent the last four years coaching first-year teachers through Grant Wood AEA, and covered the whole spectrum of grade-levels and subjects.

“My overall goal was to build teacher autonomy in order to support the diverse learners who walked through their classroom doors each day,” said Willms in her West Fork biography.

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