AT CLARK STREET Elaine L. Williams, an associate CPS attorney, has been appointed chief technology officer for the Department of Information Technology Services. She has been acting director since Richard Koeller was fired earlier this year after an unsatisfactory audit of his performance. Salary: $115,000. … CPS awarded a $65,800 security consulting contract to its retired human resources director, Thomas J. Doyle. Doyle will oversee budget and training for the Bureau of Safety and Security on a part-time basis. He also will serve as CPS liaison to the Chicago and Illinois police departments.
MOVING IN/ON New York University education professor Ellen Condliffe Lagemann succeeds Patricia Albjerg Graham, who is retiring, as president of The Spencer Foundation. Graham, a professor of education history at Harvard, has been president since 1991. … Louise Sloan, director of market development at Navy Pier, has been named executive director of Project Exploration, a non-profit science-based organization founded by University of Chicago paleontologist Dr. Paul Sereno and his wife, educator Gabrielle Lyon. …Wendy M. Stack, who oversaw school-community partnerships for the Chicago Teachers Center, has been appointed partnership director of GEAR UP (Gaining Early Awareness and Readiness Undergraduate Programs), a five-year, $31 million grant the U.S. Department of Education awarded to the Chicago Education Alliance last August. Teryl Ann Rosch, director of the Alliance, oversees grant administration. … Kenneth L. Hunter, on loan from the CPS Office of Accountability to the Illinois State of Board of Education, is serving as educator-in-residence for a year at East St. Louis High School. Hunter is a former assistant principal at Amundsen High.
PRINCIPAL REMOVALS The School Board has formally removed the following principals from schools that have not made sufficient academic progress since being placed on probation: Wesley Smith, Corliss; Frank M. Lacey, Gage Park; Daisy Bell, Hirsch Metro; and Robert Gutter, Wright. They will serve out the remainder of their principal contracts at central office, receiving the same salary and benefits.
NEW SCHOOLS In March, the School Board approved spending nearly $400,000 to buy land to build two new schools, an elementary school at 6925 N. Clark to relieve overcrowding at Field Elementary, and a middle school at 3727 W. Leland to relieve overcrowding at Haugan Elementary.
COURT WATCH Twenty-three former CPS bilingual teachers received $5,000 each to settle a dispute with the School Board over their employment. The teachers held temporary teaching certificates, but most had sued the state and won letters of eligibility for permanent certification. CPS, however, declined to honor the documents. Meanwhile, an eight-year window had closed for the teachers to pass a state certification test. Since none had passed within that time, they were honorably terminated. As a result of the settlement, the board, which needs more bilingual instructors, will provide and pay for an eight-week test-prep course for the teachers. The next state certification test is scheduled for July 8.
Conference The Neighborhood Capital Budget Group (NCBG) will host its first national conference on May 23-24 in Washington, D.C. The watchdog group, which monitors spending on Chicago school repair, construction and overcrowding, expects to convene a group of 60 activists from across the country to attend the event. The conference offers participants the opportunity to network and share ideas on raising money for school facilities projects. “People feel isolated working on these problems and yet they’re the same problems,” says Fran Gamwell, the director of NCBG’s Rebuilding America’s Schools project. Gamwell has been visiting other school districts to spread the news about successful school repair initiatives in Chicago. “Chicago has done extraordinarily well, but we can’t catch up without federal funds,” she says.
SUMMER JOBS CPS plans to use surplus funds from this year’s budget to provide summer jobs for an additional 10,000 low-income youth. The move comes in response to a change in federal policy that threatened to cut nearly in half the number of federally funded summer jobs.