An anonymous survey of District 113 staff shows that they feel a very low level of trust and respect from the district’s leadership, though they report a much better rapport with school leaders, according to an article in the Deerfield Review.
Eighty-five percent of respondents said they disagreed with the statement that the district has an “atmosphere of trust and mutual respect,” the article states. And 79 percent disagreed with a question asking if faculty and district leadership have a shared vision. In better news, well over half the respondents said they felt supported by both school and department leaders.
The question of distrust between staff and leadership came to a head this spring when Highland Park High School Principal Brad Swanson resigned. Students and parents complained that he did not want to leave and said they were uneasy with the district’s plans to replace him. The board decided to appoint an interim principal and wait a year to install a permanent replacement. Assistant Principal Tom Koulentes will fill that spot for the coming school year.
The District Education Association administered the survey, which was answered by 63 percent of school staff distributed fairly evenly between Highland Park High School and Deerfield High School.