Promoting from within, Hinsdale South assistant principal will step into top job next school year

Assistant principal for operations at Hinsdale South High School Kari Peronto will become the Hornets’ next principal at the start of the 2024-25 school year, on July 1.

Peronto, a 20-year Hinsdale South school system veteran, will take over for Patrick Hardy following his departure to become principal of Hampshire High School, in the Algonquin-based School District 300.

“Kari’s decades of experience in our brick and mortar speaks to her dedication to our students, employees and community,” District 86 Board President Catherine Greenspon said in a news release Friday. “Kari has established herself as a widely respected administrator and a wonderful ambassador of the Hinsdale South community.”

Entering the District as a special education teacher in 2004, Peronto later became director of student activities and dean of students at Hinsdale South.

“I am truly humbled, honored, and proud to serve in the role of principal at Hinsdale South,” Peronto said in a statement. “I look forward to continuing the strong, steadfast history of excellence that is within Hinsdale South; one that reflects the amazing work our staff and administrators do on a daily basis, in addition to empowering our students to reach their full potential and what it means to have South Pride, as well as work closely with students, staff and the community to continue building a strong school culture.”

Peronto earned her bachelor’s in Special Education from Illinois State University, and her master’s in School Leadership and a doctorate in Educational Leadership from Concordia University Chicago.

“My hope is that this hire provides some stability to the Hinsdale South community,” Interim Superintendent Rebecca Nelson said in Friday’s news release. “We will give Kari time to establish her leadership team and plans for the future, and I have no doubt she will continue to guide Hinsdale South down a successful path.”

Stability has been an issue for a district that has seen more than half a dozen high level school administrators leave over the course of a single year, including a superintendent, an assistant superintendent, the two school board members, the former director of human resources and former director of communications.