Longtime District 207 superintendent Wallace to retire in 2024

Maine Township High School District 207's veteran superintendent will retire at the end of the 2023-24 school year.

Ken Wallace has served as superintendent since 2009, longer than anyone else in the Park Ridge-based district's 121-year history.

"It has been the professional privilege of my life to have been blessed to lead this incredible district," he said in a news release.

Wallace said the time is right to retire because he'll be able to oversee the final phase of a nearly $241 million districtwide construction project this summer.

Voters approved funding for the extensive to-do list in 2018, and work began in 2020. Safety and security enhancements, classroom upgrades and other improvements have been made.

"Our buildings are incredible and built to serve our students in innovative ways for decades to come," Wallace said.

Wallace came to District 207 in 2005 as the assistant superintendent for curriculum and instruction. He served in that role for four years before being named superintendent.

"I'm so proud of the work we've been able to do together, all of it focused on serving students," said Wallace, of Wheaton. "That's been our north star."

Before joining District 207, Wallace worked as a teacher, athletic coach and administrator in Indiana.

Wallace and District 207 have received many accolades during his tenure.

In 2021, the district was named to the League of Innovative Schools by Digital Promise, a congressionally authorized nonprofit group.

In 2018, it was named one of the nation's most innovative districts by the School Superintendents Association and the Successful Practices Network.

In 2017, Wallace was named Champion of the Year by the Association for Career and Technical Education for helping students improve ACT scores and find careers.

The District 207 board voted Monday night to accept Wallace's retirement. School board President Carla Owen credited Wallace for improving the district and student opportunities.

"He has been steadfast in his commitment to put student interests at the center of all of our decisions in the district, often in the face of resistance and challenge," Owen said in the district's news release.

The timeline for the search for Wallace's successor hasn't been finalized, but it will begin this fall, District 207 spokesman Brett Clark said.

Wallace said he and his wife intend to travel after retirement.

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