Superintendent of Schools

Phone: 708-225-4000


Degrees and Certifications:

Dr. Nathaniel Cunningham, Jr.

Superintendent, Dr. Nathaniel Cunningham Jr.

My priority and my passion are helping students to receive and seize the educational opportunities that will enable them to excel in school and beyond. After serving as a civil engineer project manager for the United States Air Force Academy for 10 years, I entered the field of education. I have been a teacher, associate principal, and principal.  I also served as the Assistant Superintendent for Human Resources for McLean County Unit 5 Schools and, prior to serving as the Superintendent of District 205, I was the Superintendent of the Crete-Monee School District 201U.  I earned a Doctorate of Philosophy (PhD) from Illinois State University in 2016.   

Currently, I oversee Thornton, Thornridge, and Thornwood high schools, the Outlook Academy, and the PEACE Center. My objective is to ensure that District 205 has the resources to enable our students to earn a quality education in a safe learning environment. The District’s goal is for every student to be enrolled in an institute of higher learning or a vocational program, enlisted in military service, or gainfully employed when they graduate.

District 205 is guided by its core values:

  • Pride
  • Integrity
  • Responsiveness
  • High expectations with high support
  • Commitment to excellence

We had to overcome many unprecedented challenges in the last year and a half due to the COVID-19 pandemic. I am proud to say that we faced and overcame these challenges with strength, determination, perseverance, innovation, and adaptability. I am confident that the District 205 School Board, administration leaders, educators, and staff will demonstrate the same positive qualities and resolve during the 2021-2022 school year. 

The District is prepared and excited to safely return to in-person education and we believe that our students will benefit tremendously from being on campus. Meeting in person will enable us to bring enhanced structure and accountability to the learning process and offer our students the rigorous education that they need to be successful.  

Students’ educational experiences are not limited to the formal instruction that they receive, so we strive to maintain a school community that supports their social, emotional, and academic growth. Our educators and staff members are attentive to our students and willingly offer them assistance when it is requested or needed. We also know that the involvement of parents, caregivers and the community are vital to the village that is needed to educate, engage, and encourage our children. We welcome your input and ideas. 

We look forward to a safe and successful year!

Superintendent's Staff

District 205 Principals

School Name Principal Name Office Number Email
Thornridge High School Principal Dr. Justin Moore (708) 271-4411
Thornwood High School Principal Mr. Don Holmes (708) 339-7800
Thornton High School Principal Mr. Todd Whitaker (708) 225-4150
District 205 Administration Office (708) 225-4000