Geneseo Middle School principal Matt DeBaene is leaving the school district at the end of the 2013-14 school year.
DeBaene has accepted a position as assistant superintendent for curriculum and instruction in the Moline School District. His new job starts July 1.
Born and raised in Moline, DeBaene graduated from Moline High School and earned a bachelor's degree in English education from Western Illinois University, Macomb. He received a master's degree in educational leadership from Western Illinois' Quad-Cities campus.
"I've learned a great deal during my time in the Geneseo School District. In particular, I learned that when our district says, 'Committed to Excellence,' it is not just a slogan, but something real that our board and staff strives to achieve for the benefit of students," he said. "The staff, students and parents are phenomenal to work with, and I'll miss them greatly."
DeBaene started his career in education as an English teacher at Rock Island High School. From there, he accepted a position as a seventh-grade English teacher at Wood Intermediate School in Davenport, Iowa where he also coached volleyball and basketball before being named athletic director.
In 2006, DeBaene joined the Geneseo School District as an assistant principal at Geneseo High School. He served as an assistant principal for two years before becoming Geneseo Middle School principal in 2008.
"I am looking forward to my new position, opportunities and challenges. I appreciate everything the Geneseo School District has done to support me each year of my career," said DeBaene. "This is a great district that will only get better because of the positive commitment and focus of stakeholders. I am very appreciative of the students and parents I have worked with through the years. So many students have made me proud of their individual efforts and accomplishments."
Though DeBaene will start a new job this summer, he'll continue his role in Geneseo for the remainder of this school year.
"I've always enjoyed the second semester of a school year. Everyone is in a rhythm and spring activities and sports are always enjoyable," he said. "GMS will have the 'On the Same Page' program running again this year and it is fun to see students and staff members working together in support of a reading program."