Bloomingdale Dist. 13 names new superintendent

  • John Bartelt

    John Bartelt

Updated 11/30/2011 5:10 PM

In naming John Bartelt as its new superintendent, Bloomingdale Elementary District 13 officials say they found a candidate with the academic, financial and community leader experience they were seeking.

Bartelt comes from River Grove Elementary District 85.5, where he has been superintendent for more than seven years. He will replace retiring Superintendent Kim Perkins in July, just before the start of the 2012-13 school year.


School board President Tamara Peterson said Bartelt was chosen from a strong field of about 50 internal and external candidates. A search firm helped with initial vetting, and District 13 parents, staff and community members shared input throughout the search.

Ultimately, Bartelt had just the right mix of education and experience that made him stand out, Peterson said.

"I think the draws were his education, being a sitting superintendent and having strengths in a number of areas where we are experiencing turnover," said Peterson.

"Those were key thoughts."

The district soon will lose Finance Director Janis Prehn after she retires, and Peterson said Bartelt is well versed in creating successful working relationships with school boards, developing five-year strategic plans and negotiating multiyear bargaining agreements.

In addition, his academic and social strengths include increasing student academic performance, especially in reading, and working closely with community organizations, Peterson added.

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Bartelt's base salary in District 13 will be $161,000, with additional insurance and pensions benefits. He received a base salary of $138,872 in District 85.5.

This week Bartelt told officials he wants to learn the culture of the district and find out what's important students, parents and staff, so District 13 can continue to be successful.

Bartelt earned his bachelor's degree from Valparaiso University in Indiana, a master's degree in education from Harvard University in Cambridge, Ma., and a doctorate in education from Loyola University Chicago. Before his superintendent posts, he previously he has served as a teacher, coach, principal and assistant superintendent for business services.

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