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New director of secondary education, student services appointed for East Aurora

Suzanne Bement-Withrow is East Aurora's new director student services. | Kalyn Belsha~Sun-Times Media

Suzanne Bement-Withrow is East Aurora's new director of student services. | Kalyn Belsha~Sun-Times Media

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Updated: August 19, 2013 2:29PM

AURORA — Winding down its hiring spree, the East Aurora School Board voted Monday to appoint two new administrators to oversee student services and secondary education. One administrator is being promoted from within the district, the other is a new hire.

The two women are part of a slew of administrators recently hired or promoted that Superintendent Jerome Roberts called the “best team we’ve had in a while.”

“We’re going to attack the issues that have plagued the district in the academic realm for a while now,” he said.

Michele Brown, a former Elmhurst and Indian Prairie administrator, was hired as the director of secondary programs. Brown is taking on the role previously filled by Christine Warren, who unexpectedly resigned effective June 30 for a position outside the district.

For the last four years Brown was a middle school principal in Elmhurst School District 205 where she participated in school improvement planning, developed extra help courses for English-language learners and worked on scheduling to improve math and reading interventions for students.

Prior to that, Brown was an assistant principal for five years at Waubonsie Valley High School in Indian Prairie 204 and the director of student activities for four years at Minooka Community High School District 111. She taught math for 11 years and began her career in Florida.

Brown holds a master’s degree in educational administration from Governors State University and a bachelor’s degree in education from Illinois State University.

Suzanne Bement-Withrow is East Aurora’s new director of student services. She is taking on the role previously held by Catherine Lattz, who resigned from her post in May for personal reasons, effective June 30.

For the last year Bement-Withrow has served as the district’s assistant director of student services, a role in which she helped supervise school nurses, health assistants, psychologists, social workers and other special education team members.

For six years she was a special education coordinator in the district. In that role she facilitated special education meetings for three elementary schools and helped train special education teams. She also trained general education teachers about the Individualized Education Plan process.

She began her career in 1998 as a resource teacher for kindergarten to fifth grade in the Southern Will County Cooperative for Special Education, a position she held for seven years.

Bement-Withrow holds a master’s degree in educational leadership from Aurora University and a bachelor’s degree in special education from Eastern Illinois University.

Both administrators will earn a base salary of $120,000 a year.

At Monday’s meeting, School Board President Annette Johnson said it had been a tough four years for the district, but that the new administrators impressed her with their excitement and new ideas.

She praised Assistant Superintendent for Human Resources Joan Glotzbach and Assistant Superintendent for Education Services Beatrice Reyes Childress for working their “fingers to the bone” to fill many simultaneous staff openings.

“New year, new school year, great ideas,” Johnson said. “This district is on the move.”

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