Lyle Announces End of Tenure as Head of School

Lisa Lyle recently announced her plans to end her tenure as head of school at the end of the 2018-2019 academic year, which is also the conclusion of her third contract and coincides with her husband and beloved MICDS Upper School Spanish Teacher David Sanders’ retirement.

“David and I have been together now nearly 38 years—and at each career decision point he has made it possible for me to choose the very best fit. So when he asked that we think about going someplace new for his retirement years, I couldn’t but say yes,” said Ms. Lyle in her announcement to the MICDS community.

“I am announcing my decision now because I wanted to give the School the necessary time to search for the next head of school. The timing is especially important because it affords the Board and the community the opportunity to search for a new head before the ISACS year-long Accreditation Self-Study, which will help shape the next strategic plan.”

Board Chair Bill Polk ‘74 shared, “The MICDS community will miss her bold, principled, and transformational leadership. On behalf of the Board of Trustees, I want to thank Lisa for her outstanding leadership and express our deep admiration and gratitude for her devotion to our School.”

In her role as Head of School, Ms. Lyle has enhanced MICDS’ position as a national leader in independent school pedagogy, curriculum and academic engagement. She has recruited an accomplished faculty committed to great teaching and learning and built a deep and talented senior leadership team. In combination, these efforts have translated into extraordinary success in the academic performance of our students and the college placement outcomes of our graduates. She actively committed to attracting a broad spectrum of exceptional students, bringing ever increasing talent and diversity to MICDS.

“The Board, school leadership, faculty and staff, and the MICDS community remain steadfast in our commitment to ensuring a collaborative and inclusive school community where every student and family is known and valued,” said Polk.

During her tenure, Ms. Lyle has also played an integral role in the success of the $90-million Bold Action Campaign, the largest capital campaign in the School’s history. As a result, the School has completed an ambitious new building program featuring remarkable new facilities, including McDonnell Hall and Brauer Hall STEM Building, Steward Family Aquatic Center and William R. Orthwein Sr. Pool, Ron Holtman Stadium and Holekamp Stadium.

“With her eyes firmly fixed on the School’s Mission and Strategic Plan, Lisa has tackled ambitious, challenging goals, collaborated with key constituencies, adapted in the face of challenges, held standards high, and achieved evident success across key school performance measures,” said Polk.

The School has formed a committee, headed by immediate past MICDS Board Chair and parent Julie Lilly ’86, to undergo a formal search for Ms. Lyle’s replacement. The committee will look to find a leader who will advance the work Ms. Lyle has already done to ensure the School lives out its bold Mission. In addition, the search process will be inclusive and robust. There will be multiple opportunities for parents, faculty, staff, alumni and students to provide input on the priorities for our School and ideal qualities for the next head of school through confidential online surveys and in-person meetings conducted by our independent search firm.

Visit for up to date information on the search process and related communications.