Danville School Board Names Superintendent Thomas Ward’s Replacement

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DANVILLE — The Danville School Board has named Patrick Wallace the new district superintendent.

Wallace is now principal of West Elementary School in Wright City, Missouri, a role he has held for the past five years.

He will take up his new duties on July 1.

“I’m so excited to be your next superintendent,” Wallace said in a video posted to the district’s Facebook post announcing his hiring. “I can’t wait to join the Danville team. I’ve come to really learn and experience so many great things that happen there. I’ve enjoyed my experience already meeting so many members of the community, parents, families, staff and students I just can’t tell you how excited I am to get started.

Danville’s current superintendent, Thomas Ward, announced his resignation from the board in February.

Ward has served as Superintendent for the past five years. He left the district to serve as a superintendent with the Louisiana R-II School District in his hometown of Louisiana, Missouri, and be closer to his family.

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In the announcement of the district’s hiring of Wallace, they credit him with creating an innovative and systematic approach to the education of the child “whole body,” including the use of schools that take into account trauma, character education and de-escalation techniques.

Wallace also created and implemented a before and after school club program that generated 17 programs aimed at increasing student engagement.

He is also credited with designing and implementing Impact Teams as professional learning communities, which helped improve academic achievement for West Elementary students. This led to West Elementary gaining state and national recognition, and Wallace has presented at Yale University and numerous state and national conferences.

Wallace holds a specialist education degree and a master’s degree in educational administration, both from Lindenwood University in St. Charles, Missouri. He also earned a bachelor’s degree in history from Coe College in Cedar Rapids.

Wallace began his career in education as a world history teacher and football coach in seventh grade.

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Prior to his time at West Elementary, Wallace served as vice-principal at Mason Ridge Elementary School in St. Louis. He also has previous experience as an assistant lecturer at Missouri Baptist University.

Wallace already has family ties to southeast Iowa. His wife has family from Oakville and Mediapolis.

“Over the past 11 years, we’ve been back to southeast Iowa quite often,” Wallace said. “We have always loved the area, we were really looking for the right opportunity.

“When I saw Danville’s mission statement talking about creating a safe, nurturing and caring environment, as well as challenging, motivating and educating their students, that, to me, speaks to the child as a whole, that which is really my whole belief structure, which helps kids be successful in their lives,” Wallace said.

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The council worked with Grundmeyer Leader Services to conduct its search for Ward’s replacement, which included a community-wide survey, asking residents of the district for their opinions on the qualities and characteristics they would like to see in the next district chief.

The board conducted interviews with Wallace and the other two finalists on April 6.

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