Covering the Land of Lincoln

District 128 names Larry Varn its director of Equity and Inclusion

The Community High School District 128 Board of Education recently unanimously approved the hiring of Larry Varn as the district’s first director of Equity and Inclusion. He will begin his new position in D128 on July 1.

“I am extremely proud and excited to welcome Larry Varn to the D128 team,” D128 Superintendent Dr. Denise Herrmann said. “Our students, families, and educators will all benefit from his experience. His expertise will help move our schools on the continued path of excellence and assure that opportunities for success are available to all students”

In this new role, Varn’s priority is to create experiences that lead to success for all students by challenging educators to break down barriers to learning and design classrooms that embrace and integrate norms, beliefs, and behaviors that represent global cultures into daily instruction.

For Varn, this work is about more than just ensuring that District 128 schools are places where diverse people are allowed to exist, but also guaranteeing that the district has evaluated itself and its practices to make the district a place where all people can thrive.

Varn’s entire career has hinged on developing students into innovative thinkers, effective communicators, and visionary leaders empowered to change their own lives, their communities, and the world at large.

He believes that every child dreams of success, and that education is the primary instrument to realize that dream.

His journey in education began 15 years ago as an English teacher at Beaufort High School in Beaufort, South Carolina. While teaching, he also served as a school board member in his hometown of Colleton County. In 2010, Larry relocated to Chicago and taught at Urban Prep Charter Academy for Young Men and then Marine Math and Science Academy.

After completing the New Leaders Aspiring Principals program, he began his administrative tenure in Chicago Public Schools. He is currently the principal of Rich Township High School.

Varn earned his undergraduate degree from Claflin University and his master’s degree in education from the Steinhardt School Culture, Education and Human Development at New York University. He is currently pursuing a doctoral degree in Leadership, Equity, and Inquiry at Illinois State University.

Varn enjoys spending time with his family, which includes his wife, Renee, and daughter Sage. Their entire family is looking forward to becoming a part of the District 128 communities while supporting his efforts to address equity gaps and increase achievement for all of the district’s students.

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