George, Iowa — An Orange City man will no longer serve as interim superintendent for the George-Little Rock Schools, and a Sioux Center man has been hired for the job instead.
According to George-Little Rock Business Manager Cathy Bonestroo, on Wednesday night, August 28, 2019, the George-Little Rock Board of Education accepted the resignation of Interim Superintendent Les Douma. Mr. Douma was hired as an interim superintendent on July 2, 2019 but Bonestroo says he is unable to continue his duties due to health issues.
George-Little Rock School Board President Doug Krull says, “Mr. Douma has set a great foundation for our district in implementing new GLR principles which have been shared with staff during the professional development before school started. We appreciate all Mr. Douma has done for the district while he was at GLR. We wish him only the best as he enjoys his retirement.”
The board has decided to employ Patrick O’Donnell to fill the interim superintendent position. O’Donnell currently serves the George-Little Rock District in human resources and is shared with Boyden Hull Schools, Harris-Lake Park Schools, Sheldon Schools, and Sibley-Ocheyedan Schools in that capacity. O’Donnell will serve as a full-time superintendent on a ten-month contract, and will also continue to fulfill his human resources duties.
O’Donnell previously served as the Superintendent of Schools for the Sioux Center Schools from 2002 to 2018. He is also an Adjunct Professor of the graduate education program for Dordt University.
Krull says that the board is excited to have O’Donnell as the new Interim GLR superintendent. According to Krull, O’Donnell has a long history in education and has worked with the GLR district for the last year, so he is familiar with the district. Krull says he believes O’ Donnell will bring a wealth of experience and leadership as the GLR Interim Superintendent, and that the district appreciates him stepping in during this transition period.
O’Donnell will begin his duties on September 2, 2019.
Bonestroo said in a separate conversation with KIWA that George-Little Rock is also looking for a permanent superintendent, but no timeline has been established for that search. She did say that the board is hoping to look at a shared superintendent situation.
Photo caption: Patrick O’Donnell. Photo courtesy George-Little Rock School District