AT CLARK STREET Tyra Newell, director of the office of principal preparation and development, is now deputy director of the office of management and budget, a new position. A replacement for her previous position has not been selected. …LaVerne Hall, formerly a director for the Women’s Business Development Center, has been named director of business diversity, replacing Rosalinda Castillo, who resigned last year to become a construction manager at the Illinois State Toll Highway Authority.

MOVING IN/ON Creg Williams, who served as chief officer of education-to-careers under former CEO Paul Vallas, has been named superintendent of the St. Louis Public Schools.

GROW OUR OWN TEACHERS While Gov. Rod Blagojevich has put the Golden Apple Teachers Program on the chopping block again, his education funding plan includes $1.5 million for Grow Our Own Teachers, a program to increase the number of teachers in hard-to-staff Chicago schools by recruiting teacher’s aides and others already involved with schools to become certified teachers. Advocates say it could provide 1,000 new teachers by 2016. The bill became law Jan. 1, but without funding.

RENAISSANCE 2010 PROPOSALS In April, CPS will release its official request-for-proposals for institutions and groups seeking to open a new school under Renaissance 2010. The application will be due July 15. The district is offering a series of workshops to assist applicants with the proposals. Winners will be announced in October. To download the RFP, visit

NEW IB SITES Curie High School, Madero Middle School, and Locke Elementary School will begin curriculum development and training next year for the International Baccalaureate Middle Years program, bringing the number of IB schools in CPS to 22, the largest of any big-city district. The Middle Years program serves students in grades 6-10. The IB program, overseen by the Geneva, Switzerland-based International Baccalaureate Organization, provides rigorous coursework toward an internationally recognized IB diploma. Some American colleges and universities offer up to one year of credit for students who earn the diploma. Schools must complete several years of training and must be approved by the IBO, which makes extensive site visits. For more information, see Catalyst Chicago June 2004.

EARLY CHILDHOOD NETWORK The Early Childhood Network, a program which provides mentoring, professional development, training and other resources to providers, is expanding to the Albany Park area. Early childhood and daycare providers will also receive information about free resources, such as health care, that are available to children in their neighborhood, according to Lenore Johnson, a mentor in the program. The first two network communities were Edgewater and Rogers Park. (Catalyst April 2003)

REAL ESTATE PURCHASE The School Board will pay $8 million to purchase the former Lourdes High School at 4034 W. 56th St. from the Sisters of St. Joseph, a Franciscan order. The building will be used to relocate Hancock High and to relieve overcrowding at Pasteur Elementary. The board will lease back part of the grounds to the order for $1 a year through 2007.

PRINCIPAL CONTRACTS Interim principals Beryl Guy at Hay, Clifton Hunt at Oglesby, Aida Munoz at Carpenter and Louisea Storey at Ruggles have been awarded contracts. …Elsa Carmona, previously a management support director at Region 2 Area Office, is the new contract principal at Little Village Academy…. Mary Ann C. Folino, previously assistant principal at Schurz High, has been awarded a principal contract. …Joe L. Easterling-Hood at McDowell, Phylis Hammond at Tilden High, Sabrina Jackson at Turner-Drew, Patricia McCann at Mays, Maureen T. Savas at Nightingale, Karen V. Saffold at Vanderpoel and Susan K. Stoll at Hanson Park have had their contracts renewed.

VIRTUAL KINDERGARTEN Parents and teachers can learn more about their children’s school lessons through CPS’ new Virtual Kindergarten. The program, available in Spanish and English, allows parents to view the classroom lesson via video footage and duplicate the lesson at home. The web site,, is in the works. Virtual Pre-K is a similar program for pre-kindergarten.

GOLDEN APPLE TEACHERS Five Chicago Public Schools teachers are winners of this year’s Golden Apple teaching award. They are: Kim Brasfield, Carver Middle School; Elizabeth Trost, Boone Elementary; Michelle M. Navarre, Harold Washington Elementary; Mathias J. Schergen, Jenner Academy of the Arts; Tracy Kwock, Kipp Ascend Charter. Winners get a $2,500 cash prize, a new Apple computer, free sabbatical training at Northwestern University in the fall and induction into the Golden Apple Academy.

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