District 117 Rounds out list of JHS Admins, declares elementary and middle school student Deans

By Anthony Engle on August 15 at 1:15am

The Jacksonville School District Board of Education met Tuesday afternoon for a special Board meeting in the conference room of their newly refurnished offices at 211 West State Street. The meeting was to address finances and other aspects regarding an administrator contract, as well as a closed session – to speak about personnel clarification for all those hired, and the title or titles which each individual will hold in the district.

The newly-minted administrator is Jacksonville High School veteran Ryan Van Aken, who will be assuming the responsibilities as Assistant Principal and Athletic Director vacated when Joey Dion was declared by District Superintendent Steve Ptacek and the Board as Associate Principal at JHS.

Van Aken describes his career with Jacksonville High School and current enthusiasm having now accepted the Athletic Director and Assistant Principal responsibilities.

“I’ve been at JHS for 15 years, 14 as a teacher and one year in the Jobs for Illinois Grads’ Program as the director of that. The last 13 years, I’ve been a member of the Social Studies department, and I’ve also taught a couple P.E. classes for the last 5 years. This will be my first year as an administrator. It’s going to be fun and challenging. I’m excited to help run an athletic program and assist with the day to day operations for the high school that I’ve been a part of for so many years. It’s a very fun opportunity.”

Also announced during the meeting were the names of the two individuals who have been selected to fill the vacant Dean of Students spots. The Dean of Students for South Elementary and Murrayville-Woodson Elementary will be Heather Staats. The Dean of Students at Jacksonville Middle School, who will also serve as JMS’ Athletic Director, will be Tom Parkevich.

The naming of Parkevich as Dean of Students and Athletic Director at Jacksonville Middle School brings into question whether or not he will continue to serve as Defensive Coordinator, or in any capacity, as part of the Illinois College Football Team staff for the 2018 season.

The first day of classes for all District 117 students is Monday, August 20th.