MOVING IN/ON Nick Ciotola, formerly a consultant and accountant in the construction and real estate industries, is the new executive director of the Teachers Academy for Mathematics and Sciences, a nonprofit that helps schools improve math and science instruction. He replaced Lourdes Monteagudo, who now works as a school reform consultant. … Robert J. Vladem, a private investor, has been elected chairman of the board of Project Exploration, a nonprofit that works to get city schoolchildren, especially young girls, interested in science. Vladem replaces Pamela Bozeman-Evans, who resigned as chair but remains an active member at-large. … Mary A. Hicks has been promoted from program director to chief executive officer of the Rochelle Lee Fund, replacing founder Rochelle Lee. Tiana Benway has been promoted from director to chief operating officer. … Allison Jack, former director of Leadership for Quality Education’s charter school resource center, is now education policy advisor for Gov. Rod Blagojevich’s policy team in Chicago. Kathy Lavin replaced her at LQE.

PRINCIPAL CONTRACTS Interim principals who have been awarded contracts: Shelly Cordova, Armour; Shirley Dillard, McNair; Rhonda Larkin, Lathrop; Allen M. Mosley, Bontemps; Darlene Reynolds, West Pullman. Principals whose contracts have been renewed: Haydee Alvarez, Greeley; Jill Besenjak, LeMoyne; Stephen L. Jones Sr., Yale; Lawrence McElherne, Las Casas High School.

GOLDEN APPLES Four Chicago Public Schools teachers are winners of this year’s Golden Apple teaching award. They are: Jelaine Binford, Curie High; Timothy Devine, Northside College Prep; Elena Diadenko-Hunter, Clemente High; Diego Giraldo, Jones College Prep. Winners get a $2,500 cash prize, a new computer, free sabbatical training at Northwestern University in the fall and induction into the Golden Apple Academy. Other winners are from the University of Chicago Lab School and four suburban districts.

ACADEMIC DECATHLON Whitney Young Magnet High School won the Illinois Academic Decathlon this year for the 13th time in 14 years. The contest covers a range of subjects. Whitney Young will now participate in the national competition on April 14-17 in Boise, Idaho.

CTU PRESIDENT HONORED The Chicago Federation of Labor named Chicago Teachers Union President Deborah Lynch “Woman Labor Leader of the Year.” The federation presented Lynch with the award during its 23rd annual “Tribute to Women in the Labor Movement” event on March 2. The event coincided with National Women’s History Week.

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