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Bolingbrook HS Principal Out; RHS Administrator to Take the Helm

Supt. James Mitchem said he's in charge for now, and will oversee RHS Assistant Principal Yolanda Jordan as she temporarily takes over the role.

Michael White. Credit: File photo
Michael White. Credit: File photo
As of Friday, Superintendent James Mitchem said he's in charge — for now— at Bolingbrook High School. 

Mitchem said he is handling operations at BHS following the departure of Principal Michael White earlier this week.

Beginning Tuesday, Romeoville High School Assistant Principal Yolanda Jordan will act as interim principal for the remainder of the school year, Mitchem said. Students are off Monday in observance of President's Day.

"I have set up a satellite office at BHS and will work from the building until such time the interim principal has acclimated herself to the new setting," Mitchem said.

White resigned in January, saying he would leave BHS at the end of the school year to pursue other opportunities. BHS parents, however, reported that White was absent beginning Thursday.

Mitchem said he couldn't comment on what prompted White's early departure.

Last month, White said he resigned after feeling he was limited in his ability to do his job.

“I felt I had reached the limits of what I could do at Bolingbrook High School. So, I submitted my resignation after many, many, many conversation," he said. "Don’t think this was just a one-time deal. I decided it was time for me to move on as a result of the fact I couldn’t get senior leadership to make some decisions that would help me do my job.”

White was popular among parents, who spoke out during a January board meeting in support of the principal. The board ultimately voted 5-2 to accept his resignation.

“The decision to resign did not come easy and has been made with much thought and discussion with people who I believe are honest, and hold credibility and integrity in this district," White said in a statement last month. "It does not come easy because the staff and students at Bolingbrook High School are second to none. They should be commended for what they do each day."

Parents took to Patch to voice their concerns over White's departure and the perceived lack of information coming from the district.

"People have been calling the school to find out what is going on and they keep on getting transferfed around without answer," one mom said in a message to Bolingbrook Patch. "I am so worried for the welfare of my son and the entire student body!"

"This is just outrageous... I'm so pissed off right now," another said via Facebook. "... all I can say is these kids have been completely let down... and BHS is screwed.. wish I could send my kids somewhere else."

Residents held an event Jan. 24 to collect signatures for a petition to support the popular principal. An online petition called "Do What's Right ... Support Principal White!" had 563 signatures as of Friday.

Search for another new principal begins

Mitchem said the BHS principal job has been posted, and the district is accepting applications.

White's departure is the latest administrative turnover at BHS. In 2012, Principal Fabby Williams announced his resignation after just more than six months on the job.

White, a former U.S. Army Ranger, took the helm during the 2012-13 school year after retiring from Ann Arbor Public Schools in Michigan.
Tito Santana February 14, 2014 at 01:57 PM
Mitchem is a joke. How does he have a job? I heard White left because the district is paying him $1 million, yes, $1 million to leave and agree to not sue them in the future. I do not have kids in this district thank god.
mysty February 14, 2014 at 08:28 PM
So sad... For the kids. Mr.Williams was a joke... Ms. Jordan is a wonderful lady... But NOT a Mr. White... All the best BHS.
Pete Simon February 15, 2014 at 06:05 PM
Read some of the comments over on the Bolingbrook Patch. District is messed up. I don't think he is even qualified to be superintendent!

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