Maus steps down as principal

Maus steps down as principal

Atreyo Ghosh

Current principal Mark Maus (left) and future principal Dr. Jen Mast (right) stand together by the photos of previous principals of RBHS. Photo by Daphne Yu
Current principal Mark Maus (left) and future principal Dr. Jen Mast (right) stand by the photos of previous principals of RBHS after the announcement after school Friday that Maus will not be principal next year. Photo by Daphne Yu
In a faculty meeting today with superintendent Dr. Chris Belcher, RBHS principal Mark Maus announced he was stepping down as principal of RBHS next year. Athletics Director Dr. Jen Mast is expected to take his position for the 2013-2014 school year.
“We just felt like Dr. Mast has been here,” assistant superintendent for secondary education Jolene Yoakum said.  “We’ve been really pleased with the job she does here with the athletics component and felt like she was a great fit for the students and staff at Rock Bridge, and we’re very excited to have her.”
The board office alerted Mast yesterday at 2:30 p.m. of Maus’ imminent departure and her promotion at the same time. Having attended RBHS as a student and having been on the school faculty for more than 15 years, Mast was surprised at how fast the process went. Although she was shocked at the turn of events, she accepted the job.
“It’s emotional. I went to school here; I started my teaching career here; I coached here; I’ve been the [athletic’s director],” Mast said. “So it’s emotional because it came out of the blue, but it seems like a really natural fit.”
Maus is leaving because of a number of family concerns, he said. He and his wife are expecting a third child, and his father is facing health problems.
“My father has been in pretty good health. He has two [artificial] knees and a new hip. But he’s young; he’s 72. He went into the hospital for a leg infection and went into cardiac arrest. It was very serious — long time in the hospital — and he’s still trying to recover from his leg. It’s a very slow process, and I don’t know what [the recovery] will look like. Some work [was] done on his heart. It’s important for me to be near him right now and be close to him,” Maus said. “It really came down to being close to my dad and then us having a third child. This puts us closer to family. My wife’s brother and his family live in the Kansas City area. My parents live in the KC area, and [my wife’s] parents are only an hour away from there, an hour and a half away.”
Maus came to RBHS in 2010, the first year the current senior class was here at RBHS. This year’s graduating class will be his first and only full one. He will be returning to his former school, Oak Park High School, as a principal but will remember this one forever.
“Rock Bridge will always be in my heart. I do believe that this school is special and unique. It has given me more than I have given it,” Maus said. “I have full trust in Jen — Dr. Mast. She’s going to do a great job, and it actually helps that I know she’s going to be the one sitting here next August. I’ve loved every second I’ve been here. I’ll miss it.”
By Atreyo Ghosh, Daphne Yu, Brett Stover and Laurel Critchfield
What’s your favorite memory of Mr. Maus?