Greenfield Principal Don Tobe Celebrates 25 Years
At the most, the students entering Greenfield Elementary School this fall were doing so for the sixth time. But Principal Don Tobe has over two decades on the students as he stepped in to Greenfield Elementary School for the 25th year this fall.
“I truly feel blessed to have landed in a community I respect and admire,” Tobe said. “I would never have realized 24 years ago that I’d be here for such a lengthy stay, but I really love the community, the staff, and the kids. It’s been a great match. I truly have the highest regard for the teachers, administrators, school board members and kids. I just do. Collectively they all make Birmingham Public Schools a very special place to work and learn.”
Guided by the support of his parents, two people supportive of education and teachers, Tobe received his Bachelors in Elementary and Special Education as well as his Masters in School Administration, both from Michigan State University. Tobe also holds a Specialist degree in Curriculum and Instruction from MSU.
Tobe began his career in the Mason School District as a Special Education and fifth and sixth grade general education teacher. Before his long tenure at Greenfield, Tobe held principal positions in various districts for nine years.
“Being a principal is a service position and it’s important to remember that first,” said Tobe, who mentored new principals over the course of his career and often offered that advice. “The most important thing is that children learn and achieve. Anything they or the teachers need along the way needs to be provided and supported.”
Tobe lives in Farmington Hills with his wife of nearly 30 years, Mary. They have four grown children - Christian (28) currently in Washington, D.C.; Justin (26) currently in New York City; Heidi (24) just returned from an 11-month Christian mission; and Edie (21), a senior at Michigan State University taking after her father and earning her degree in Special Education.