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Plano board names new superintendent

Jim Porter, right, president of the Plano Board of Education, presented Hector Garcia with a purple Plano schools shirt to welcome him to the helm of the school district.
Jim Porter, right, president of the Plano Board of Education, presented Hector Garcia with a purple Plano schools shirt to welcome him to the helm of the school district.

PLANO — Plano School District No. 88 has announced the employment of Hector Garcia as the new superintendent of schools. He will replace Laurel Walker, who will retire on June 30 after serving Plano schools for 31 years as teacher, guidance counselor, principal, curriculum director and superintendent.

Hector Garcia, Ph.D., is serving as assistant superintendent of educational services for Glenbard School District 87 in Glen Ellyn. He leads curricular improvement and professional development initiatives throughout the district and aligns these efforts with the district’s progress as a professional learning community.

Garcia has been an educator for nearly 20 years with background as a teacher, high school principal and district administrator in Cicero, Plainfield and Lincolnshire. His educational experiences range from working in a predominantly low-income, minority setting to one of the most affluent and high-performing schools, Adlai E. Stevenson High School in Lincolnshire.

Garcia’s strong belief in developing schools responsive to the needs of students and establishing a culture of high expectations has resulted in marked improvement in various schools he has served. Garcia speaks and provides professional development resources for Solution Tree, presenting at four PLC Work Institutes over the past two years.  He has presented across the country on topics ranging from developing a culture of high expectations to implementing support systems for students who are struggling academically and behaviorally.

Garcia also has worked with educational leaders to make curricula more relevant to minority students. In recent years, he has been asked to testify to the Illinois Education Committee and has taught graduate courses on leadership, organizational behavior and curriculum for three Chicago area universities.

Garcia received a bachelor’s degree in history from the University of Illinois at Chicago, a master’s degree in education from Northern Illinois University, and a doctorate in education leadership and policy studies from Loyola University. He resides in Elmhurst with his wife and four children.

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