IVC Superintendent Dr. Nick Polyak is leaving Illinois Valley Central District 321 for a Chicago school district.
“I have accepted another position,” said Polyak Tuesday afternoon by phone.
The IVC District 321 School Board met Nov. 6 in closed session to discuss the matter.
He told the staff Nov. 1 that he would be leaving the district for Leyden Community High School District 212 in Cook County.
With the next IVC school board meeting Nov. 13, and the Leyden school board voting Nov. 8 to make him superintendent, the special meeting was needed.
“This was a very difficult decision. My family and I have made so many wonderful friendships here. I couldn’t ask for a better
group of teachers and staff members, a more supportive Board of Education, or a more wonderful community than what we found at IVC,” Polyak said in a press release.
Not only is the professional development advantageous for Polyak, but he cites a determining factor is the move would bring his family closer to their extended families. He is a Joliet native.
“When my family and I moved to Chillicothe almost four years ago, we didn’t know what to expect from the IVC community,” Polyak emailed to the staff. “As I now tell people every chance I get, this is a truly amazing place. The students, families, support staff, teachers, administrators, and Board of Education are top notch. The community is more supportive than I could have ever imagined.”
His first day at the new job will be July 1.
Polyak replaced Dr. Dave Kinney who retired in July 2009.
Polyak came to Chillicothe after being an administrator at Lincoln-Way Community High School District 210. He also was a teacher and tennis and soccer coach.
During the last four years, Polyak championed the cause started by the South School Parent-Teacher Association to install SMART Boards in all the district’s classrooms. He also initiated the new random drug testing policy at the high school.
He also has overseen facility projects, including work at Chillicothe Elementary Center and South School. A redesigned remodeling project for Mossville School also will be ready for bids soon.
For the district’s future, Polyak was at the helm of the most recent strategic planning session, which gathers both residents and school officials to work on the district’s mission and goals for the next five years.
Polyak is also currently the president of the Chillicothe Chamber of Commerce. His term ends in December. He also has coached numerous youth sports and is involved in other volunteer organizations.
He also emphasized volunteerism for not only district administrators but also students when he came to town.
“Since joining the IVC team, Dr. Polyak has been a strong leader and has brought an inspiring vision to our district. The Board of Education is disappointed to see him leave but we all wish him much success at Leyden,” School Board President Mike Denzer said.
Polyak added, “I am sad to think about leaving, but I am excited about the new challenges that are ahead. I will have nothing but fond memories of my time at IVC, but there is still a lot to be done over the next eight months.”