DANVILLE, IA — The Danville Community School District Board of Education has announced three finalists in its search for the school district’s next superintendent. 

The finalists are Mark Taylor, Derek Philips, and Patrick Wallace. Each brings significant experience in recruiting and retaining qualified staff, promoting communities of care for students, and building school and community relations. 

Taylor currently serves as the North Hill Elementary School principal in Burlington, Iowa. He also serves as the Title I Director for the district, Autism Committee chair, as well as a participant on District SIAC, Teacher Leadership, andl Professional Development committee for multiple elementary buildings in Burlington. Taylor is credited by many as a relationship builder through his student-centered approach to instruction and timely and meaningful professional development. Before becoming an administrator, Taylor spent 10 years in vocal and instrumental music education. 

Philips is the current principal of Columbus Elementary School in Chariton, Iowa. There, he leads a staff of 50 and 330 students in pre-kindergarten through second grade, with a focus on creating a collaborative culture through embedded professional development. He has also worked to create a systematic approach to special education across the district. Before that, Philips was associate principal at Liberty Elementary in Ottumwa, Iowa. 

As principal of Wright City West Elementary School, Wallace has created an innovative and systematic approach to educating the “whole” child, using strategies like implementing Trauma Informed Schools, character education, and de-escalation techniques. He also created and implemented a before- and after-school club program. Previously, Wallace served as assistant principal of Mason Ridge Elementary School in St. Louis, Missouri. He began his career as a seventh-grade world history teacher. 

The Board of Education has been working with Grundmeyer Leader Services to conduct the superintendent search. The process has included a community-wide survey, asking district residents to provide their input on the qualities and characteristics they would like to see in the district’s next leader. 

As a next step, the board and stakeholder interview teams will conduct final interviews with each of the three finalists on Wednesday, April 6. The board plans to then discuss the candidates and reach a final decision soon after the formal interviews. 

The next superintendent will officially begin leading the Danville Community School District on July 1, 2022.