City leaders, then-MRH superintendent drove Maplewood turnaround: St. Louis Magazine

In a little more than 10 years, Maplewood has gone from having many, many vacant storefronts to thriving. St. Louis Magazine reported that Maplewood Community Development Director Rachelle L’Ecuyer and then-Maplewood Richmond Heights superintendent Linda Henke had much to do with the turnaround. 

Community development director, L’Ecuyer, grew the business district by focusing on attracting small businesses rather than chains, and promoted events, like the Schafly’s farmers and brokers’ tours to bring people in.

Linda Henke, who is now retired from the MRH School District

Henke became the MRH superintendent in 2000, when the school district was close to failing.

According to St. Louis Magazine, when Henke became superintendent the district was fulfilling just 57 of the 100 requirements for state accreditation, had cycled through four superintendents in five years and one eighth-grade class had gone through seven math teachers in one year.

Henke fired more than 30 percent of the teaching staff, and began to work against the district’s image as a training ground for teachers to move on from. She also fought to update historic school buildings and insisted on five teachers per grade level. She also brought new pride to the district.

See the full story in St. Louis Magazine.

Henke said on Facebook on Friday, she’s “Enjoying Santa Fe and the work at my center, The Santa Fe Center for Transformational School Leadership.”



2 thoughts on “City leaders, then-MRH superintendent drove Maplewood turnaround: St. Louis Magazine

  1. A lot of events and people drove the Maplewood turnaround.
    But there is no question that Linda Henke. was one of the major forces.