Submitted by Community Unit School District 200
At a special meeting today (Thursday), the District 200 Board of Education accepted the resignation of Superintendent Dr. Brian Harris and approved a Separation Agreement with him, which is effective immediately.
This agreement, which can be found on the District 200 website, will ensure a smooth transition of leadership over the next several months.
The District 200 Board of Education also appointed Assistant Superintendent for Educational Services, Faith Dahlquist, as Interim Superintendent while they search for a permanent replacement.
Earlier today, the Barrington CUSD 220 Board of Education hired Dr. Harris as their new Superintendent effective tomorrow, May 30th.
Dr. Harris first informed the Board of his offer and intention to accept the Superintendent position in Barrington CUSD 220 on May 14th.
The Board then worked diligently within a short period of time to develop a separation agreement in order to ensure a stable transition and facilitate the search for a successor.
Dr. Harris’ separation agreement exercises the Board's contractual right to waive a $40,000 payment for Dr. Harris’ early resignation, in exchange for ten defined terms, including significant assistance with the search for a successor.
Because of the structure of Dr. Harris’ separation agreement, his extensive professional connections and the reputation of District 200, the Board does not intend to use an outside search firm, thereby potentially saving District dollars.
Dr. Harris served as Superintendent in District 200 for four years after being hired in 2010. During his tenure, Dr. Harris built a highly effective District Leadership Team that has been responsible for several large scale initiatives and significant accomplishments.
- Educational Services – Improved student learning by implementing Common Core Standards, by instituting Professional Learning Communities (opportunities for teachers to collaborate and focus on student achievement) and by creating a standards-based report card at the elementary level.
- Technology – Prepared District 200 for digital learning by completely overhauling the technology infrastructure in all schools including robust wireless access in all classrooms.
- Finance – Achieved financial stability for District 200 through four consecutive years of balanced budgets and the implementation of a fund balance policy, earning the District Financial Recognition from the Illinois State Board of Education.
- Student Services – Enhanced school climate by creating consistent approaches to Special Education services, the social and emotional well-being of students, and wellness.
- Staff Development – Improved instruction by creating common expectations for staff performance through the implementation of a new administrator and teacher evaluation system.
- Communications – Engaged the community through Engage 200, and improved print and electronic communications such as new websites, newsletters, reports to the community and other materials.
Board President Barbara Intihar states, “The Board of Education is committed to recruiting a highly talented and student-focused leader that will carry on the good work that Dr. Harris has begun. While it is important for us to secure a successor in a timely manner, it is essential to find the right leader for our community. We are proud of our accomplishments under Dr. Harris’ four years of educational leadership. He is leaving us in a good position. We believe that the strong leadership team built by Dr. Harris, in partnership with the Board of Education, will ensure that our strategic focus remains steadfast – to continue inspiring excellence for all students. While we are sad to see him leave, we understand the opportunity he has before him is outstanding as he will have the financial resources to execute a variety of innovative educational programs for students. We wish him much success.” Intihar adds, “We anticipate that Dr. Harris will continue his advocacy for educational issues at the state and federal levels. If he does, we will be benefiting from his leadership for years to come.”
Upon his departure, Dr. Harris adds, “I have been honored to serve the Wheaton and Warrenville communities for the past four years and enhance learning opportunities to ensure college and career readiness for all students. I have often said District 200 is a destination district and I still believe that. District 200 has a long and rich history of educational excellence, a supportive community, highly qualified teachers, talented leadership, and a Board that has allowed me to maximize my professional talents. I am confident that the programs we have implemented will guarantee continued success.”
Faith Dahlquist, Interim Superintendent, states, “I am confident that the District Leadership Team will continue the good work we have in progress. We will continue to support our very dedicated and talented staff members as they help students learn and achieve at a high level.”