OPRF High School reorganizes administrator roles: New structure remains cost neutral by not replacing principal while adding executive director of equity and student success

March 22, 2019

(March 22, 2019) — At last night’s regular Board meeting, Superintendent Dr. Joylynn Pruitt-Adams shared a new organizational chart for administration that will be put into place for the 2019-2020 school year. Earlier this week, Principal Nate Rouse announced his resignation, effective June 30. The new structure does not include the role of principal.

Greg Johnson will be promoted from the role of assistant superintendent to associate superintendent. Some of his current duties will be reassigned, because he will be assuming many of the responsibilities traditionally held by the principal. Additionally, the titles of assistant principals are being changed to director positions, and these positions also will take on some of the principal responsibilities.

The district is focused on infusing racial equity at all levels of the school  and district, and has launched a number of initiatives this year, including a racial equity policy, training in restorative justice practices, and creation of racial equity coaches for teachers. Restructuring administrative roles allows creation of the new position executive director of equity and student learning that will further equity work while remaining cost neutral and keeping the number of administrators the same.

Along with the new structure, the superintendent is assigning each of the strategic plan goals to a specific administrator. Previously, oversight of the goals has been more diffuse, with various implementation committees working on different pieces of the plan.

“This structure is, admittedly, somewhat unconventional,” said Dr. Pruitt-Adams, who shared the proposed restructuring at an all-staff meeting on Wednesday. “But OPRF is not a conventional district. This is a forward-thinking structure that will allow us to transform the way we do teaching and learning in this school.”

She went on to add that the changes will help ease the boundaries between building and district, and move the school toward being a single, more integrated team all focused on its core mission: serving students. Board members praised the new structure as “creative” and even “brilliant.”

Recognizing that the new structure will give rise to many questions, including to whom parents and students should go for various concerns, the district is working on a developing an FAQ that will be shared widely with staff, students, parents, and the community.

“We have an opportunity for transformation, and I wholeheartedly believe that this new structure will take us where we want to go,” Dr. Pruitt-Adams said. “Change is difficult, even when it’s positive change, and I ask our school community to stay open to the possibilities. I see nothing but great things ahead for Oak Park and River Forest High School, and I look forward to doing this work together.”

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