Mount Prospect School District 57 has named Dr. Kristin Vonder Haar, principal of Westbrook School for Young Learners, as the District's new assistant superintendent of teaching and learning, replacing Dr. Mary Gorr. Gorr will become superintendent when Dr. Elaine Aumiller retires on July 1.
"Dr. Vonder Haar has been a respected leader at Westbrook for the past two years, and assistant principal before that, and we're thankful for her many contributions there," Aumiller says. "We feel she is the best candidate and well-equipped for this important district-wide position."
Vonder Haar also served District 57 as Extended School Year principal for two years. Before joining the District, she was an advanced learning facilitator in Arlington Heights School District 25, where she led many educational and staff development initiatives. She also has middle school experience, having started her career as a sixth-grade math, science and 21st century skills teacher in Deerfield.
Vonder Haar received her bachelor's, two master's and a doctorate from the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. She also has a master's from Northwestern University. Gorr says that at Westbrook, Vonder Haar has worked to improve student achievement, has been a valued coach and mentor to staff, has helped cultivate a collaborative school community, and is well loved by the students. "Dr. Vonder Haar will be missed at Westbrook, but we're grateful that her experience and skills will now benefit all of our schools. She is a great fit for this leadership role," Gorr says.
Vonder Haar says it has been an honor to be part of the Westbrook community and that she looks forward to this new opportunity. "Westbrook is a special place, and it has been rewarding to partner with staff to foster a nurturing environment and help students develop a love for learning," she says. "In my new role, I look forward to continuing the District's great work in advancing educational opportunities and staff development for all levels of learning."
The District is committed to finding an excellent replacement for Vonder Haar at Westbrook, according to Aumiller and Gorr. The principal position will be posted after the School Board approves the new contract at its next meeting on April 15.
Aumiller says she and Gorr are working together to prepare for the superintendent transition in a few months and that they collaborated on the decision to hire Vonder Haar as assistant superintendent of teaching and learning.
On Monday, April 12, District 57 students transitioned to the new spring learning model, with many students returning to their schools for full-time in-person learning and some taking part in remote learning.
District 57 serves approximately 2,230 pre-kindergarten through eighth-grade students in the community of Mount Prospect, Ill., preparing them to learn and succeed in a changing world.