Joshua Starr, incoming Montgomery County schools superintendent, gets acquainted

Incoming Montgomery County schools superintendent Joshua Starr got an early preview Wednesday of the schools, students, and parents he'll soon be working with closely.

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Starr stopped by Oakland Terrace Elementary in Silver Spring, one of many meet-and-greets this week.

“Just to see where the rubber hits the road and that’s in our classrooms. I just want to get a feel for it,” Starr said.

He will also meet with parents.

Last night Starr was at Richard Montgomery High School in Rockville, and tonight he’s visiting Montgomery Blair High School in Silver Spring.

So far, one issue stands out, Starr said. “Everybody's concerned about the budget. Certainly that's weighing at the top of people's minds,” he said.

Starr comes from a Connecticut school district of 15,000 students to Montgomery County’s district of 144,000. He insists he is prepared to handle all of the top issues, including the financial ones.

“Every school district in America is facing the same problems around budgets. I think the most important thing to do is be honest with people and open and transparent about what the challenges are and how to move past them,” Starr said.

Recently a parents coalition criticized the school system, calling Starr's hiring too secretive and saying that other candidates for superintendent were never made public.

“You know, when I get down here in July and when the school year starts, come out and meet me and we can talk and we talk about what we want for this school district going forward,” Starr said.

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