Last week on Anchored in Education, we spoke to Dr. Ken Wallace from Maine Township High School District #207 about Getting it “Right” for Every Student. It was an amazing episode that was well received because of the fascinating and forward-thinking approach they are taking to education.
This week, we are visiting briefly with Ken again to talk about the business partners that Maine Township has to better serve their students and provide meaningful experiences.
Dr. Ken Wallace, Superintendent, Maine Township High School District 207, twice named one of America’s most innovative Districts during Ken’s tenure, leads a District at the forefront of three of the most important advancements in public education: The District’s 3 comprehensive high schools have been recognized by the Washington Post, US News & World, and Newsweek to be among the nation’s best high schools. Under Ken’s leadership District 207 became Google’s first k-12 partner, created annual instructional coaching plans for every teacher, was named one of America’s most innovative Districts by Tech Insider, was named a Google Reference District, and won an International Achievement Award from the Center for Digital Education. Dr. Wallace is the 2017 Illinois Association of Career and Technical Education Champion and the 2018 National Association of Career and Technical Education Champion of the year for the District’s work to improve college and career counseling and outcomes for every student. District 207’s innovative Adult Learning program, centered around teacher leadership, personalized PD with annual instructional coaching plans for every teacher, has helped the district significantly improve student achievement and outcomes despite increasing poverty and diversity among its students. Ken was also named one of EdTech’s top 100 influencers for 2017-2018. District 207 was recently chosen by AASA and the Successful Practices Network as one of the 25 most innovative US Districts for inclusion in a study of Districts for, “innovative practices leading to increased student achievement.” In addition, District 207 has been invited to present the work that the District is doing to improve student outcomes at the 2019 ASCD National Empower Conference as well as the Model Schools Conference in Washington, D.C. in June, 2019.
Ken is part of the ISTE Digital Leadership Cohort, is a Future Ready mentor, and is past President of the Suburban Superintendents Association in Chicago and the President-elect of the Illinois Digital Educators Association (IDEA). Ken also wrote the original draft that became Senate Bill 2838 that unanimously passed the Illinois House and Senate and was signed into law this fall to improve student access to and portability of dual credits. Dr. Wallace also led efforts to successfully pass District 207’s first building referendum in 45 years, culminating in 61% yes votes in the November 6, 2018 election to allow the District to borrow 195 million dollars in bonds to modernize its three high schools. Ken is the founder of the Chicago Coaching Center (http://www.chicagocoachingcenter.org/).