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Principal resigns from I.S.D. 166

Aug 24, 2018 08:18AM ● By Editor

By Brian Larsen of The Cook County News Herald - August 24, 2018

Dr. William (Bill) DeWitt resigned from his I.S.D. 166 P.K.-12 principal position at the school board’s August 16 meeting. His wife, Sarah, also resigned from her physical education teaching job.

Dr. DeWitt’s last day is September 1, but he is taking leave he accrued, so his last working day was the day of the school board meeting.

The DeWitts are leaving to be closer to their family. 

School board member Deb White said she woke up at 3:42 a.m. the day of the school board meeting “stressing out” about Dr. DeWitt’s leaving the district. She thanked him for his service and wished him and his wife well.

Fellow school board member Carrie Jansen said, “I’m extremely sad. I have never seen an administrator with more honesty or integrity.” School board members Chris Goettl, Dan Shirley and Sissy Lunde echoed Jansen’s sentiments.

Dr. DeWitt, who was very popular with the kids, parents and staff, said during his three years here he had received, “wonderful teacher, staff, and student support. I don’t know if I said it in my letter, but I wish I could move the school and everyone with me.”

The school district administration is now in the hands of superintendent Dr. William Crandall, who is also the superintendent for Two Harbors and Silver Bay schools, and assistant principal Mitch Dorr, who has been in his position about seven months after leaving a lengthy teaching career.

“Trust Mr. Dorr and Dr. Crandall’s leadership,” said Dr. DeWitt, adding that after a busy summer of planning, much of the coming school year was mapped out by the administration.

The school board agreed to begin searching for a K-12 principal.

On Monday, August 27 the school board will hold a special meeting to discuss the interview process and set the selection criteria for candidates, as well as discuss what the board wants from a new principal.

An interview team will also be selected that includes two school board members as well as time set aside to review applications. Dates will also be set to interview prospective candidates at this meeting. 

Dr. Crandall’s report

Superintendent Crandall told the board that the science and culinary arts building projects are in full swing. 

The interior of the culinary arts is being worked on, and the science wing will be open for the start of school when the staff returns.

The parking lot has been re-lined and sealed along with new fencing installed in place beside the playground to make the play area safer.

Assistant principal Mitch Dorr said 28 students reported for summer school and half of them completed their course credits while many others were now working from home online to make up their credits.

“One thing that has become evident this summer is how much our high school guidance counselor does in the summer months.

“There have been numerous requests for transcripts, schedule changes, enrollment options for PSEO and online classes, etc. Cindy Everson and I have been busy trying to help complete as many of these requests as possible. A special thanks to Cindy Everson for all of her hard work and for past counselor Kris Hoffman who has been a gracious source for help and wisdom.” 

Other school news:

. The school board received letters of resignation from paraprofessionals MaeAnna LaFavor and Amanda Anderson. In her submission letter, MaeAnna thanked the board for her job and said it had inspired her to return to college. 

. Sandra Smith, a school bus driver, resigned from her full-time route but will substitute when needed, said Crandall. 

. Lance Anderson was hired as a full-time bus driver. Lance worked as a driver for the school district last year. 

. Stephanie Lundorff was hired as the school’s new counselor. Last year Stephanie taught English here but before that she was a guidance counselor for over four years at a private school located in the Twin Cities. 

. Kelly Hawsen was hired as an ECSE teacher at a .67 full-time rate.

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