New Shabbona Elementary School principal has high hopes for upcoming year


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Thus far in her career in education, Jackie Tingley has worked in the middle and high school arenas. Now she is embarking on a new adventure at the elementary level as she oversees an elementary school — Shabbona, to be exact.

“I could not be more excited to be a part of the Shabbona Elementary team,” Tingley said in a recent interview with the Country Herald. “I am so grateful for the opportunity to serve the community in which I live.”

The Bourbonnais 53 School Board named Tingley to the position of Shabbona’s new principal at a meeting July 28. She assumed the role soon after the vote was taken.

In her first few weeks on the job, Tingley said she is excited to work with a collaborative team of teachers and other faculty members.

“Our staff is dedicated, imaginative and compassionate individuals who work hard to serve the needs of the Shabbona students and families,” she said. “I look forward to learning from and with them for many years to come.”

Tingley’s resume prior to arriving at Shabbona includes stints at schools elsewhere in the area. Most recently, she served as assistant principal at Bradley Central Middle School — a position she held for three years while focusing on curriculum development, instructional coaching and social-emotional education.

Previously, Tingley also served as a math teacher at Bradley-Bourbonnais Community High School, where she assumed such roles as the school’s student council sponsor, dance team coach and teacher dean. 

Of course, Tingley is assuming her principalship at Shabbona at an unprecedented time in life. Regardless of the impact COVID-19 will have on Central Illinois residents’ lives in the months ahead, Tingley said there is one overarching concept she plans to adhere to so everyone — staff, students and parents — are on the same page.

“Communication is essential as we navigate through these unprecedented times,” Tinley said. “I want parents to feel informed, understood and supported throughout this year and years to come.”

She added, “Safety is so important, especially during this pandemic, and we must make sure that all school community members feel safe.”

Tingley holds a bachelor’s degree in mathematics from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and a master’s degree in educational leadership. She and her husband reside in Bourbonnais with their two children and dog Boomer.

Dave Fidlin
Dave Fidlin
Dave Fidlin is a veteran journalist, with 20 years experience, who has a passion for community news because no two communities are alike! Follow him on Twitter at @dfidlin_writer.


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