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Columbaro named principal at Algonquin Lakes School

Chris Columbaro was named as new principal AlgonquLakes Elementary School. He will start July 1 2014.

Chris Columbaro was named as the new principal of Algonquin Lakes Elementary School. He will start July 1, 2014.

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Updated: March 18, 2014 6:08AM

ALGONQUIN — Chris Columbaro was named as the new principal of Algonquin Lakes Elementary School. He will start July 1.

He was formally introduced recently to the Community Unit School District 300 Board of Education.

The search for a new principal started in November, according to Kristin Corriveau, assistant superintendent for elementary teaching and learning.

She said she and Superintendent Michael Bregy spent an entire day at Algonquin Lakes gathering information. “We met with staff, we met with parents, we met with students and found out all the qualities they wanted in a principal,” she said. “They made the challenge very difficult because they essentially said they wanted to keep their current principal, who unfortunately is retiring,” Corriveau said.

Principal RuthAnn Ryan, who has been principal since the school opened in 2002, will retire at the end of this school year.

Because Ryan is so beloved by teachers, parents and students, Corriveau said, the district adapted the principal selection process to make it a little more rigorous and ensure they found the right candidate.

Columbaro was formally introduced to the Algonquin Lakes staff on Monday morning as their next leader.

He began his career in District 300 in January 2003, when he was hired as the music teacher at Liberty Elementary School in Carpentersville. “I had the pleasure of working with Chris there for six years, where he was every principal’s dream,” Corriveau said.

Corriveau said during his tenure at Liberty, Columbaro started a mentor program and was active on the school improvement team.

In 2009, Columbaro became the head of the Fine Arts Division at Dundee-Crown High School in Carpentersville and then moved over as associate principal for curriculum and instruction there in 2011.

Columbaro received his bachelor’s degree from Roosevelt University and his master’s in educational administration from the University of Illinois.

He is a lifelong resident of Crystal Lake, where he lives with his wife and three young daughters.

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