Rolling Meadows' Eileen Hart named Illinois High School Principal of the Year

Excitement filled the theater at Rolling Meadows High School. Colleagues and family members watched a surprise announcement Friday as Eileen Hart was named the Illinois High School Principal of the Year by the Illinois Principals Association.

The annual Horace Mann/IPA High School Principal of the Year Award recognizes principals who have demonstrated a positive impact on their students and learning community.

"I'm absolutely stunned, I'm incredibly humbled. I love working with the IPA North Cook Region- the people are incredible, and I've always enjoyed working with the Rolling Meadows High School and D214 staff. It's given me opportunities to build college and career pathways, and work with teachers directly on dreams that they have and work to make happen. This is an absolute reflection on the amazing people I work with at Rolling Meadows High School and District 214," said Hart.

Hart is retiring at the end of this school year after 12 years as principal of the school. She has had an incredible year, highlighted by a November visit by First Lady Jill Biden and three U.S. cabinet secretaries, Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo, U.S. Secretary of Labor Marty Walsh and U.S. Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona.

"It's been an amazing year with Dr. Biden coming in the fall and now to receive this, it's an absolutely incredible way to end my capstone year. All this great work that we've done collectively. This speaks volumes about the work that we've done together," she said. "Thank you to everybody. Thank you IPA, the committee, and really District 214 for giving me an incredible amount of opportunities. I couldn't be more grateful."

The High School Principal of the Year winner was selected from a pool of regional nominees provided by the 21 regions of the Illinois Principals Association. Hart will be recognized at the IPA's Education Leaders Annual Conference in October 2023.

Hart previously won the North Cook Principal of the Year award in 2017. She was also the 2021 recipient of the North Cook Region's Herman Graves Award, which the IPA calls the highest honor it bestows. It recognizes outstanding service to the principals' organization.

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