SYCAMORE – It took a yearlong global search, but Cornerstone Christian Academy, 355 N. Cross St., is ready to begin its 2018-19 school year with a new administrator and K-12 principal.
In June 2017, previous administrator Tom Olstead moved out of the state to be closer to extended family. He was replaced in an interim capacity by Kevin White.
New administrator Stacie O'Daniell, wife of Genoa-Kingston School District 424 Superintendent Brent O'Daniell, began May 14 after serving in a number of other educational roles within the public school system, such as a business education teacher, administrator and technology coordinator.
“It’s been a great transition into the Christian workplace,” Stacie O’Daniell said. “I’ve enjoyed meeting my co-workers, and got to meet a lot of students and families during the last two weeks of school.”
With business growth relatively stagnant in Genoa, Stacie O’Daniell said it will be important to perform more outreach and create more community partnerships to help boost enrollment. She hopes to create a rigorous academic program for students, get to know the staff and their functions, and work to align a K-12 curriculum.
Andrew Duininck, the new principal at Cornerstone, moved from San Antonio, Texas, where he served as the assistant headmaster of a public charter school. He said he came to DeKalb County to be closer to his wife’s family, who live in DeKalb and Naperville.
Although he has been in his position for only a few weeks, Duininck said he has been impressed by the openness of the faculty and staff.
“This school has been around for quite a long time, and yet there’s no attitude of doing things the way they’ve always been done,” Duininck said. “Everyone has been appreciative of [O’Daniell’s and my] expertise and leadership.”
Duininck said his goals are to increase academic rigor, develop curriculum and collect academic data to gauge students' progress.