KEITH COUNTRY DAY SCHOOL NAMES DR. DEBRA DIMKE HEAD OF SCHOOL
The Keith Country Day School community is thrilled to announce Dr. Debra Dimke has been named the 16th Head of School. Well-known within District 205, the Peoria School District and District U-46 as an exceptional leader, Dimke brings more than 34 years of experience to Keith as a teacher, administrator and executive director.
As Head of School, Dr. Dimke will oversee the curriculum, faculty, admissions, finances, development program and communications while maintaining the high standards for student achievement and community involvement that Keith Country Day School has proudly displayed for more than 97 years.
“It is quite clear the Keith community passionately cares about high educational standards and strongly desires a college preparatory academic experience for all of its students,” said Dimke. “I am extremely excited about the opportunity to enhance Keith School’s traditions of excellence.”
A graduate of Northern Illinois University with a master’s degree in educational administration/special education and a doctorate in educational leadership from Western Illinois University, Dr. Dimke served as the Executive Director for Human Resources in the Peoria School District prior to joining Keith Country Day School. While in Peoria, she was instrumental in redesigning administrative and faculty accountability systems, introducing a new teacher mentoring program, helping organize professional learning community strategies and assisting with the internal controls for financial expenditures.
A Rockford native, Dr. Dimke graduated from Auburn High School. She began her career in 1978 as an elementary school teacher in District 205 until 1988 when she became an assistant professor at Rockford College, working in the Education Department.
Dr. Dimke rejoined District 205 in 1990 where she spent the next 15 years serving in a variety of positions including staff developer, principal, director of special programs, area superintendent for school support and finally assistant superintendent for human resources from 2003 to 2005. As a 205 executive administrator, she introduced several new initiatives and programs such as developing curricula for bilingual, gifted and special education students, implementing a new instructional management system for principals and teachers, and introducing new formative and summative data and reporting collection systems for monitoring student achievement.
From 2005 to 2009, Dr. Dimke was the Executive Director for Educational Programs and Accountability for the School District U-46. During her tenure, she led the curriculum, assessment and instruction team in the development and implementation of a college readiness program, initiated new professional development opportunities for teachers, and supervised instructional support systems for numerous departments including early childhood education, gifted education and career/technical education.
“For many years, Keith Country Day School students have outperformed their peers on national assessments,” added Dimke.
“I have great confidence in the expertise and creativity of the faculty and staff. In partnership with our parents, we will collaboratively build the Keith School educational experience to become one of the nation’s premier college preparatory schools.”
If the name Dimke sounds familiar, it’s for good reason. Dr. Dimke’s husband (Tim) is the Executive Director of the Rockford Park District. Their son, (Derek), recently finished his collegiate football career with the University of Illinois as the school’s all-time leader in field goal accuracy. This summer, Derek was signed to a free agent contract with the Detroit Lions and will be playing his first NFL preseason game on August 10.