According to David Pollard of the Proviso Herald, Bellwood SD88 has a new superintendent. Bellwood School District 88 named an interim superintendent Monday after accepting Superintendent Rosemary Hendricks' resignation.
The school board voted unanimously in accepting Hendricks' resignation. School board member Daphne Walker was absent.
Kyle R. Hastings, acting superintendent was named interim superintendent Monday. He will serve as interim superintendent until the search for a new superintendent is completed.
Hastings has served as acting superintendent since mid-August. Hendricks was on family medical leave since June.
Hendricks was supposed to return to work Sept. 22, but the School Board called a special meeting Sept. 19, the weekend before she was to return to work, and voted to put her on paid administrative leave.
Hendricks said she wishes the district well. She said her goal as superintendent was to do what was in the best interest of the children.
"Hopefully the board can come together and do what's best for the children," she said. "I wish them (the board) good luck and much success and I hope they find a superintendent who will meet their needs."
Prior to her resignation an investigation into Hendricks performance was being conducted by Arlington Heights-based law firm Hodges, Loizzi, Eisenhammer Rodick and Kohn. She was placed on paid administrative leave during the investigation.
When asked if the law firm's findings were the result of Hendricks' resignation School Board President Tommy Miller said the board accepted her resignation Oct. 6 and there is no longer an investigation. He would not elaborate as to what the firm was investigating, saying it was a personnel matter.
The school district has paid the law firm $18,000 since July when the investigation began.
Prior to the board's vote, Hastings was paid $744 a day to come into the office a few times a week to sign off on district materials. Now he will work full time and receive the equivalent of Hendricks' annual salary of $140,000, until the search for a new superintendent is completed. Hastings will be responsible for organizing the search of a new superintendent.
The board voted 4-2 in favor of making Hastings interim superintendent. Board members Althea Busby and Ronald Anderson voted against it. Board President Tommy Miller, Maria Casterjon, Yvette Ramirez and Marilyn Thurman voted in favor.
Busby said she voted against making Hastings interim superintendent because there are employees currently working in the school district with a superintendent certification who could step in. "We have people in the district who know the district and are not learning it," she said.
Hastings said he plans to bring the district into compliance with the Regional Office of Education in the areas of technology, finance and district policy and procedures.
Miller said the regional office did their audit of the district in 2007. "They found that there were things in the district that were in compliance and there were things that were not in compliance and we had to correct them," he said.
He said there policies and procedures in the district that were either outdated or needed to be revised. Miller said there are various deadlines to bring things into compliance, but he wants the superintendent to work toward compliance.
"All we have to do is show them that we are moving in the right direction to bring these things up to date," he said.
Hastings said as interim superintendent he hopes make improvements in the district.
"We're going to do a lot of great things this school year," he said. "We're going to bring the district into the new century. A lot of things will be new and improved."