SUMMERVILLE, S.C. (WCBD) — Dorchester County School District Two’s (DD2) new superintendent, Dr. Shane Robbins, hosted a workshop Friday with the district’s board of trustees to set goals for the upcoming school year.

The workshop agenda included reviewing the expectations of the school board and setting goals for the upcoming year.

“This is the first time they’ve ever gone through a superintendent search process in 22 years, and so it’s important for us to start off on the right foot,” Robbins said.

Robbins is replacing former DD2 superintendent Joseph Pye — who spent 52 years serving the district — after a strenuous search for a new superintendent.

School board leaders said Robbins has been meeting local stakeholders and making positive change in the community since before he began the role on July 1.

“It’s a great thing to see the new development of what things are to come,” said Gail Hughes, the board chairman for DD2.

Robbins said he is happy to see the district’s teacher vacancies dip down to double digits, but the district is still finding creative ways to improve the retention of their 1,500 teachers.

Hughes said this includes creating incentives and working with town leaders to recruit educators to work in the district.

“It’s my responsibility, it’s the board’s responsibility, to keep and retain the best and the brightest, and also to demonstrate we are the best option in the community for kids to receive their education,” Robbins said.

In his new role, some of Robbins’ goals include implementing new technology in the classroom and boosting student engagement, he said.

“Having that unified vision, in practice, not just in words, is really important,” Robbins said.

Robbins said the most common feedback he hears from parents in the district is the need for consistency and normalcy after the pandemic.

“We’re still on the hills of COVID, and trying to get kids back re-engaged at the highest level, and support our teachers the best we can,” Robbins said.

Regardless of the changes Robbins plans to implement, he said he plans to keep the district’s “students first” mindset at the core of his work.

“It’s a wonderful school district, they have great achievement levels. But there’s opportunities for us to get better,” Robbins said.