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Mitrovich lands finalist spot for Washington job

Mark Mitrovich

Mark Mitrovich

Naperville Unit District 203 Superintendent Mark Mitrovich may be headed back to his longtime home state of Washington.

The schools chief who announced his resignation in March is one of three finalists for the superintendent job in Bellevue School District just outside Seattle.

“Having lived out there all my life I’m very familiar with the district,” he said. “Bellevue as a community and as a district is very similar (to Naperville) in terms of its demographics and student performance. It’s just an excellent school district. So it would be one that I think would be attractive to many people.”

Bellevue School District has just over 18,000 students in 27 schools, according to its website. District leaders have chosen three superintendent finalists who they will interview over the next three days. The finalists also will be meeting with the community during public forums. Mitrovich’s interview is scheduled for Wednesday.

Mitrovich has worked in numerous Washington school districts throughout his career, which included serving as superintendent for Peninsula School District in Gig Harbor, Wash., about 50 miles from Bellevue. In 1998, he was named Washington State Superintendent of the Year. He also earned both his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in Washington schools.

Mitrovich came to District 203 in 2009 after having led EdGate, a company he co-founded that helps improve student performance via the Internet.The school board showed its approval of his performance last summer, giving him a 5 percent bonus and a $25,000 raise.

In March, following several tumultuous months of boundary change discussions, Mitrovich announced his resignation effective June 30. He reiterated Monday it was a “very personal decision” and said he felt no pressure to resign.

“I was ready for kind of a new challenge,” he said. “I’ve thoroughly enjoyed my time here. I love the people, I love the community, but I think you know when it’s time for a change.”

The school board has chosen Assistant Superintendent for Secondary Education Dan Bridges as interim superintendent beginning July 1.

Mitrovich called Bridges a “highly capable young man” and said when Bridges was hired a year ago there was an expectation he might eventually succeed him, although he conceded it wasn’t expected to happen quite so soon.

If Mitrovich is selected for the Bellevue job, he would begin on July 1. He said he has other job prospects as well, but is not at liberty to discuss the specifics except to say they are not in the Naperville area.

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