'I'm excited to join the team': Northbrook Dist. 28 introduces next superintendent

  • Dr. Jason Pearson speaks after being introduced as the new District 28 superintendent during Tuesday's school board meeting. He will replace Dr. Larry Hewitt effective July 1.

      Dr. Jason Pearson speaks after being introduced as the new District 28 superintendent during Tuesday's school board meeting. He will replace Dr. Larry Hewitt effective July 1. Joe Lewnard | Staff Photographer

  • Dr. Jason Pearson receives a gift bag from Board President Tracy Katz Muhl after being introduced as the new District 28 superintendent during Tuesday's school board meeting. He will replace Dr. Larry Hewitt effective July 1.

      Dr. Jason Pearson receives a gift bag from Board President Tracy Katz Muhl after being introduced as the new District 28 superintendent during Tuesday's school board meeting. He will replace Dr. Larry Hewitt effective July 1. Joe Lewnard | Staff Photographer

  • Dr. Jason Pearson, left, speaks after being introduced as the new District 28 superintendent during Tuesday's school board meeting. He will replace Dr. Larry Hewitt, right, effective July 1.

      Dr. Jason Pearson, left, speaks after being introduced as the new District 28 superintendent during Tuesday's school board meeting. He will replace Dr. Larry Hewitt, right, effective July 1. Joe Lewnard | Staff Photographer

 
 
Posted12/16/2021 8:30 AM

Northbrook District 28 introduced its new superintendent during a board of education meeting Tuesday evening.

Jason Pearson is coming to the district after spending 11 years in St. Charles District 303, including the last four as superintendent. He will replace Larry Hewitt, who has been superintendent of Dist. 28 for 15 years and is retiring at the end of the school year.

 

"It's clear to me that this is really an outstanding district," Pearson said. "It's great to see that I'm coming to a place that is really well-run, and I'm excited to join the team."

A comprehensive search by the firm School Exec Connect resulted in 36 external candidates applying for the position, according to a statement issued by Dist. 28. Seven candidates were interviewed by the board, which then narrowed the pool to three.

Finalists were then interviewed by three teams, one each of administrators, staff and parents, and after reviewing feedback from these groups the board heard a presentation from each of the three finalists, then conducted an in-depth interview, according the district statement.

According to his contract, he'll be paid $245,000 per year, receive 20 days of vacation each year and be granted a one-time allotment of 30 days sick time for 2022. After that, he'll get 15 sick days per year. His most recent contract in District 303, that ran from 2019-22, started at $226,000.

In addition to having served as an area superintendent, deputy superintendent and superintendent in Dist. 303, Pearson has served as music teacher and principal during his 25 years in education. He earned his doctorate in educational leadership and organizational policy from Vanderbilt University.

Pearson will be making a transition to his new position over the next several months. "It really has been impressive to me, first of all, to understand this is truly a community of learners, that they care about their students, they're very student-centered, but they also care about and take care of each other," Pearson said. "They prioritize both social and emotional learning, as well as academic achievement for students, and I think that finding that balance for the district is critical."

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