Sheppard Sonntag

Communications office intern, Cache County School District

For nearly two decades, Dr. Todd McKee has regularly spent time with his extended family in Cache Valley. Little did he know he would one day have the opportunity to be superintendent of the Cache County School District (CCSD).

Dr. McKee was raised in Utah in a household where education played a central role. As the eldest of five siblings, he grew up observing the dedication of his mother who worked for an elementary school in Salt Lake City, and his father who was involved in mentoring young men. His parents’ involvement in positively influencing children had a profound impact on Dr. McKee’s journey as an educator.

“They left an impression on me,” Dr. McKee said. “There is a positive feeling that you get about having that kind of an influence that I’ve never experienced anywhere else. Thinking that I could have a positive impact on somebody else, like those that I admired had on me, triggered my passion.”

While attending a rivalry football game in high school, Dr. McKee met his wife, Emalie. Hailing from Coalville, Utah, education held a significant role in Emaile’s upbringing. Her mother taught kindergarten, and her father was a high school teacher, fostering a deep connection to education. The McKees have been married for 34 years and are the proud parents of three adult children.

Following the completion of his history degree at the University of Utah, Dr. McKee spent two years teaching in alternative schools before teaching at a high school in Oregon for five years. During his tenure as a high school educator, he helped to manage the district’s magnet program for the International Baccalaureate Diploma.

“Coordinating this magnet program was my first taste of administration,” Dr. McKee said. “I could see how I could have a bigger influence over more kids, and not just those in my classroom. That was important to me because it led me into administration.”

In 2006, Dr. McKee became the principal at Sunset High School in Beaverton School District, located in Beaverton, Oregon. During his time as principal, the school attained an Outstanding rating from the state office of education. His journey led him to be the principal at Timpview High School in the Provo City School District in 2011. In 2015, Timpview High School was distinguished as the top-ranking high school in the state by US News and World Report. Because of his past accomplishments in
education, Dr. McKee was appointed to be the assistant superintendent for secondary education in the Provo City School District in 2016.

Even though he was already comfortably settled with his family in Provo, Dr. McKee’s interest was piqued when the position of superintendent for the CCSD was announced. He applied and was thrilled to be offered the position.

“I look back and feel pretty fortunate for both myself and my family,” Dr. McKee expresses. “A lot of things had to fall into place to make this happen. I feel like there’s a reason I’m here.”

Dr. McKee is excited to introduce his dynamic vision to guide the CCSD toward building on what is already a strong foundation. Embracing a student-centered approach, he recognizes that progress is often limited by the depth of understanding. He has a strong commitment to investing in authentic and meaningful relationships.

“Leading is like teaching. Nobody cares how much you know until they know how much you care,” Dr. McKee said. “And so, the most important step for me, day one, is really starting to develop relationships; getting to know people and, more importantly, letting people get to know me.”

Dr. McKee places emphasis on ensuring each student’s sense of worth and recognition within the educational setting. By prioritizing this as a goal for the district, he believes that metrics like high graduation rates and successful test scores will follow. He believes a student-centered approach is the key to overall academic achievement and growth.

“Metrics are important. Don’t get me wrong. But I want every student to feel seen, heard, and valued,” Dr. McKee conveys, “If we can keep our focus on that, I believe the metrics will take care of themselves.”

Dr. McKee deeply appreciates the Cache County Board of Education’s mission statement, which emphasizes the education of students for success in a changing world. “That, to me, is our North Star,” Dr. McKee said. “Adjusting and making sure the climate is right, where kids trust the adults, and the adults trust each other, and parents trust the system, will help the district move forward.”

Superintendent McKee is thrilled to be a part of the Cache Valley community and looks forward to the upcoming school year.