D211 Post: New principals named at Hoffman Estates and Schaumburg High Schools


           Palatine, Ill. — At its January 16, 2020 meeting, the Board of Education approved the appointment of Michael Alther as principal at Hoffman Estates High School, and the appointment of Brian Harlan at Schaumburg High School.  Both appointments will be effective July 1, 2020.  Mr. Alther, currently an assistant principal at Palatine High School, assumes the principalship from Josh Schumacher, who was recently named District 211 assistant superintendent for instruction.  Mr. Harlan, currently an assistant principal at Hoffman Estates High School, will take over the principalship from Tim Little, who will retire after serving District 211 for 33 years, including the past 13 as principal at Schaumburg High School.

Mr. Michael Alther has been selected as the new principal for Hoffman Estates High School.

         Mr. Alther has been an assistant principal at Palatine High School since 2004, serving first as 10-month assistant principal for two years and then in 2006 as 12-month assistant principal lead disciplinarian, before being promoted in 2008 to the position he currently holds as 12-month assistant principal for staff development, building and grounds, and student activities.  Mr. Alther came to District 211 in 2002 as a business education teacher at Palatine High School.  He began his teaching career as a high school business education teacher in Community Unit School District 303 in St. Charles where he taught for seven years before coming to District 211.  Mr. Alther earned his bachelor’s degree in business education from Illinois State University in 1995, and in 2000, he received his cooperative education certification from Southern Illinois University.  Mr. Alther earned his master’s degree in educational leadership from Aurora University in 2002 and has since taken coursework towards a doctorate in curriculum and instruction through Aurora University.

        “Mike Alther is a dedicated and reflective leader,” said Superintendent-Elect Lisa Small.  “During his 16 years as an administrator in District 211, I have watched him partner with students, staff, and parents to positively impact students – enhancing their experiences in the classroom, increasing career exploration opportunities, creating diverse afterschool connections, and preparing them for success.  Mike is the perfect fit as principal at Hoffman Estates High School, and I know that his enthusiasm will add to the unwavering Hawk pride found throughout the school community.”

Mr. Brian Harlan has been selected as the new principal for Schaumburg High School.

        Mr. Harlan began his career in education as a science teacher at Hoffman Estates High School in 2007.  He served as the school’s dean of students during the 2012-2013 school year, before being named a 10-month assistant principal at Fremd High School in 2013.  In 2015, Mr. Harlan returned to Hoffman Estates High School, accepting a 12-month assistant principal position at the school, responsible for student intervention and discipline.  The following year, he was appointed to his current position as 12-month assistant principal, overseeing staff development, building and grounds, and student activities.  Mr. Harlan earned his bachelor’s degree in geology from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 2004, and his master’s degree in geology from Northern Illinois University in 2007.  He earned a second master’s degree in school leadership from Concordia University in Chicago in 2012.  In 2015, he earned a master’s degree in school business from Northern Illinois University and a chief school business official endorsement.

        “For many years, Tim Little has been an important member of our administrative team, not only at Schaumburg High School, but throughout District 211, and he will be missed,” said Dr. Small.  “I am excited about Brian Harlan taking over the principalship at Schaumburg High School.  He is leader who embraces a culture of continual improvement and will provide dynamic support to help all students succeed.  He believes in high expectations for every student and will work diligently to implement successful approaches to help guide students toward their post-high school choices.  He truly values direct connections with all school community stakeholders, and this will make his student-centered focus rewarding for all within the Schaumburg High School community.