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District 87 Names 4 New Principals, New Post For Crisis Intervention

District 87 headquarters
Eric Stock
Nearly half of the schools in District 87 will be getting new principals next school year. Several retirements prompted a major reshuffling.

District 87 is adding a new administrative position to help students with crisis prevention and intervention as part of a major district reshuffling.

Superintendent Barry Reilly said teachers have made clear they need help for students with social and emotional needs.

“We are having to train them on mental health issues, on trauma, because they are experiencing that in classrooms,” Reilly said. “Kids are coming to our schools and having challenges based on what they are facing outside of school.”

“We’re not alone. This is stuff that many (schools) are facing across the country, let alone our state.”

Katy Hansen
Credit District 87
Stevenson Elementary principal Katy Hansen is set to become District 87's assistant director of special education.

Katy Hansen, the current Stevenson Elementary principal, will fill the role of assistant director of special education, pending approval by the District 87 school board at its Feb. 12 meeting. Lynn Shook, the assistant principal at Bloomington Junior High School, would replace Hansen as principal at Stevenson.

Sheridan Elementary Principal Jen McGowan is set to replace Shook at BJHS.

Danel Behrends-Harr, the principal at Sarah E. Raymond School of Early Childhood Education since 2007, will become Sheridan’s principal.

Current BJHS principal Sherry Thomas is set to become District 87s new assistant superintendent of human resources, replacing Herschel Hannah who is retiring.

Sherri Thomas
Credit District 87
Sherri Thomas is set to become District 87's assistant superintendent of human resources.

Amanda Jarvis, the associate principal at Bloomington High School since 2012, would replace Thomas as BJHS principal.

Bent Elementary School Principal Jeff Geringer is also retiring. The district is tabbing Guillermina Delgado to replace him. She’s been a bilingual teacher at Bent since 2006.

“There are people who bring a large amount of experience. They are not new to being in leadership roles," Reilly said. “So even through you are kind of seeing those domino effects, these are seasoned people moving into these positions.”

Reilly said he's not concerned about continuity during the transition as each of the four new school principals and three administrators were internal candidates.

“It doesn’t mean that we’re not interested in looking at outside candidates,” Reilly said. “We are, in fact, we did for several of these, but in the end those that rose to the top were our own people.”

Amanda Jarvis
Credit District 87
Amanda Jarvis is set to become the new principal at Bloomington Junior High School.

Reilly said the district plans to cover the additional administrative salary in partly through grants and state funding. He said the school’s Evidence-Based Funding Model should provide an additional $300,000 annually to help cover those and other costs. Reilly added the district will likely see some salary savings due to retirements.

The district plans to soon begin the search for candidates for associate principal of Bloomington High School and principal of Raymond School of Early Childhood Education.

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Eric Stock is the News Director at WGLT. You can contact Eric at ejstoc1@ilstu.edu.
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