Independence Local Schools News Article

Mr. Timothy (T.J.) Ebert Hired as Next IPS Principal



Mr. Ebert and familyAt the May 14, 2019 Independence Board of Education meeting, Timothy (T.J.) Ebert was hired as the next principal of Independence Primary School.  Ebert will be replacing Cynthia Ipsaro who is retiring at the end of this school year.

Ebert comes to Independence from Redwood Elementary in Avon Lake where he has been principal since 2011.  While at Redwood, he was responsible for the daily operation of this elementary school with more than 425 students and 50 staff.  The school has been ranked as a top 20 elementary school in the State of Ohio and also is an Ohio Association of Elementary School Administrators (OAESA) Hall of Fame School.   In 2018, Ebert was the National Association of Elementary School Principals (NAESP) Principal of the Year.  Ebert also was an assistant principal and summer school principal at Avon Lake High School from 2006-2001.  He began his career as a social studies teacher at Bedford High School.

According to the OAESA website, when Redwood Elementary was admitted to the Ohio Association of Elementary School Administrators’ Hall of Fame, the award acknowledged the school’s proud student body, committed staff, and highly involved parents, but underscored that none would be possible without the tireless leadership of Principal T.J. Ebert. According to OAESA, “every stockholder has a story about how his leadership makes the school a better place,” and those stories have been told since he first became principal in 2011.  With a background as a coach, Ebert’s leadership is hands-on and mentorship-oriented. While unafraid to make bold structural changes, his purpose is always to build leadership in others. For example, he spearheaded a redesign of the master schedule to secure common planning time and then immediately took on the role of instructional coach to support teacher-led discussions on how to leverage resources and plan lessons to meet common core standards. The most tenured principal in his district, Ebert has formally mentored five new administrators while also providing sustained counsel to his peers and oversight of the district’s teacher training program. Ebert is active in local athletics and prides himself on balancing a full professional life with an active life as a father of three young children. 

Ebert holds a B.A. in Education from Kent State University, an M.A. in Educational Administration from Cleveland State University, and Superintendent Licensure from Ashland University.  He resides in Sagamore Hills with his wife and three children.

“Mr. Ebert stood out throughout our entire search process as an engaging, dedicated and intelligent leader,” said Superintendent Ben Hegedish.  “We welcome him to the Independence Local Schools’ team and I can’t wait for our primary school staff, students, parents and community to meet him.”  Ebert will be at the District’s Spring Cookout/Town Hall Meeting on Thursday, May 23 from 6-7:15 p.m. at the outdoor pavilion at Independence Primary School.  All are welcome to attend.

“I am very excited to be a part of Independence Local Schools,” said Ebert.  “I have had an opportunity to communicate with numerous leaders in the district, including Mr. Hegedish, and I am impressed with their vision on education and future for the district.  In my short time at Independence Primary School, I have witnessed staff, students and parents working together in the best interest of their students.  This is something that I am looking forward to being a part of in the future.”

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