That’s because Bowler, who has been in education for 25 years, has spent most of his career – 23 years to be exact – right here in the county.
“After working as an educator at Eagle’s Landing High School, I became the assistant principal in 1995 and then went on to become the first principal of Union Grove High School in 2000,” he said. “I then became director of human resources for the county’s central office.”
Bowler said he is honored to take on the position of superintendent in what he said was a “wonderful school system with great staff members.”
“One nice thing for me is that there is a sense of comfort with this position because I know our county and community and they know me as well,” he said.
However, Bowler said comfort does not equal complacency.
“I want to advance the work this system is already doing to make our schools even more successful,” he said.
Bowler said his vision for the school system is one of “rigor, relevance and relationships” and includes recognizing each student as an individual.
“Our students are given the strongest rigor and high expectations, but in order for them to succeed we, as a school system, must make sure what we’re teaching is relevant to what they’re interested in and focused on,” he said.
“We want to build strong relationships with kids in order to know them, support them and encourage them and then recognize that each child is different. Once what they are learning is relevant to them, it allows us to have high expectations.”
Bowler said he believes schools systems in general are moving “down a road of personalized learning” and it should be OK to expect students to excel and master skills at different rates and levels.
“We need to open our minds and realize that mastery isn’t just about getting test questions correct,” he said.
“Our main focus for the next several years is to make sure each student is highly successful and we’re well-positioned to do that because our financial landscape seems to be improving.”