The Six Day notice was published yesterday, can be accessed at the following link and identifies Dr. Hector Garcia as the candidate who will be approved by the BOE at the February 26, 2018 Regular Board Meeting: Six Day Notice.
The notice provides Dr. Garcia's proposed salary and benefits for the next 3 years (which we will comment on below). In addition, Dr. Garcia's Resume can be accessed at the following link: Dr. Garcia's Resume. We found the notice within the Salary/Benefits Tab within the Financial Reports Tab within the Department of Business and Operations tab. Not easily found, but at least it was posted. We assume it must have been posted late Monday night following the Special Board Meeting.
So what is our initial impression of Dr. Garcia's candidacy? We begin by saying BRAVO to the BOE!
In order to write this post, we reviewed Dr. Garcia's resume and conducted some online due diligence. As we conducted our research, our optimism and excitement surrounding Dr. Garcia grew. We are impressed with Dr. Garcia's background, credentials, work experience and reputation in the communities he has worked. It is our hopeful opinion that with his knowledge base Dr. Garcia may be exactly what D181 needs right now to steer the district back on course.
We, the bloggers, have always taken the position that D181 is not a starter district for administrators. We believe that administrators, especially those in the central office, must come to our district with wide-ranging experience and not have to learn how to do their job after arriving here. We hoped the BOE would identify and hire a superintendent with a background and experience in Curriculum, especially after years of curriculum turmoil in our district. We hoped the person would have high school experience, in order to be able to understand the importance of articulation with the high school D181's chidren will attend. We also hoped that the new superintenent would have experience in finance and human resources, in order to be able to jump right in to tackle the fiscal problems D181 is currently facing and assist the BOE in negotiating a fiscally responsible teachers' contract. Finally we hoped that the new superintendent would have work experience in high achieving districts similar to D181.
In Dr. Garcia, the BOE may have hit a home run.
He has over 22 years of educational experience in grades K through Grade 12. He has systematically worked his way to the top job in the central office -- a superintendent -- after working as a teacher. Assistant Dean of Students, Dean of Students, Assistant Principal, Director of Educational Services, Principal, Director of Curriculum and Instruction, Assistant Superintendent for Educational Services (Teaching and Learning), and the last 5 1/2 years as a superintendent.
Dr. Garcia is currently the superintendent of a diverse (both racially and socio-economically) K-12 district -- Plano District 88 in Illinois -- with approximately 2400 students. Dr. Garcia was approved as the Plano Superintendent in 2012 and in 2016 his contract was extended for an additional 5 years. With a much smaller budget that D181's in Plano, it appears Dr. Garcia has worn many hats. Unlike D181 which has many levels of Assistant Superintendents for various departments, Plano, does not have Assistant Superintendent positions, rather only has a Director for Teaching and Learning and a Director of Assessment. Dr. Garcia appears to be in charge of the finance department and human resource department, and he is currently completing a CSBO endorsement (Chief School Business Official). (Sources: Plano District 88 2016 State Report Card, Plano District 88 website, Dr. Garcia's Resume, 3/17/16 Kendall County Now article.
Prior to his hire as Plano's superintendent, Dr. Garcia worked in high achieving districts and schools such as Glen Ellyn District 87 and Adlai E. Stevenson High School, in particular as a curriculum administrator. (Source: Dr. Garcia's Resume.)
As one news article stated: "His educational experiences range from working in a predominantly low-income, minority setting to one of the most affluent and high-performing schools, Adlai E. Stevenson High School in Lincolnshire." (Source: 1/30/12 ValleyLife Press article.)
One gets a sense of who Dr. Garcia is in reading his Superintendent's message on the Plano District 88 website, which states in part: