Comings & Goings

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MOVING IN/ON The creation of New Schools for Chicago by the Civic Committee of the Commercial Club of Chicago has prompted several personnel changes. New Schools for Chicago is the organization that will raise private funds for Renaissance 2010 schools and oversee distribution of private funds to Renaissance 2010 schools. Phyllis Lockett Martin, executive director of the Civic Committee’s Financial Research and Advisory Committee (FRAC), has become executive director of New Schools for Chicago. John Ayers, executive director of Leadership for Quality Education, which focused on charter schools, has resigned but will do some consulting for the group. He has been succeeded by Senior Associate Director Pamela Clarke. … Sarah Vanderwicken, director of the children’s health and education project for the Chicago Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law, has resigned. The position, the last remnant of the Lawyers’ School Reform Advisory Project, was eliminated due to funding cuts. The group was first launched in 1995 to provide free legal assistance to local school council members. … Richard Friedman has been named executive director of Art Resources in Teaching (A.R.T.), a non-profit educational arts organization. Friedman, a one-time teacher, was a fundraising consultant and an independent theatre producer. He succeeds Jeanne Becker, who resigned to pursue a writing and consulting career. … Wanda Newell, former education program director at the McCormick Tribune Foundation, has joined the Center for the Study of Social Policy, a think tank in Washington, D.C., as a senior associate. Kathleen Praznowksi, assistant director, will be acting in Newell’s place until a replacement is found. … Mary Nelson, founder and president of Bethel New Life, a community group that has been active in school improvement, will step down in July after 25 years. A successor has not been named. … Andrea Lee, former director of the schools initiative for the Neighborhood Capital Budget Group, has joined the Grand Boulevard Federation as education and community organizer. John Paul Jones, NCBG’s director of community outreach, will take on Lee’s duties until a replacement is hired. … April Ervin has been promoted to executive director of New Leaders for New Schools, an alternative principal certification program. Kathleen Weaver has taken over Ervin’s previous post as deputy director. … Craig Wacker, former program examiner for the education branch of the White House Office of Management and Budget under the Clinton and Bush administrations, has been named program officer for human and community development for the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation.

PRINCIPAL CONTRACTS Interim principals Carlos Azcoitia at Spry and Deborah Edwards at Piccolo have been awarded contracts. …Sonia Caban, previously a New Leaders for New Schools principal intern at Daniel Boone Elementary, is the new principal at Mozart. Caban replaces Louis Lousordo, who retired. … Christina Gonzalez has had her contract at Emilio Zapata renewed.

AT CLARK STREET Phil Hansen, former chief accountability officer at CPS and assistant to the superintendent at the Illinois State Board of Education, has joined Princeton Review as national director for urban schools, a new position. Hansen has also joined Solomon Consulting, Inc., a new educational consulting group, as senior advisor. … Maurice Woods, a project manager in the CPS Office of Technology Services, has been promoted to deputy chief information officer. Woods replaces James Dispensa, who is now director of the CPS School Demographics and Planning department. … Derek Blaida, former assistant to Mayor Richard M. Daley, has been appointed director of intergovernmental affairs in the CPS Office of External Affairs

NEW LOCATION Parents United for Responsible Education (PURE) has moved its office to 100 S. Morgan St. on the Near West Side. PURE has two new telephone numbers: (312) 491-9101 and toll-free (877) 491-PURE. The email address remains PURE will host an open house on Friday, Feb. 18 from 4 to 7 p.m.

EDUCATOR’S AWARD Timuel Black, a veteran Chicago educator, civil rights activist and author, received an award for teaching excellence from the Oppenheimer Family Foundation.

COLLEGE COUNSELING Students seeking information on colleges, scholarships and financial aid can get help through March 10 at a CPS Online College & Financial Aid Center. The centers are located at 19 high schools and Gallery 37, at 66 E. Randolph St. Students can participate in online workshops and discussion groups, and improve their writing through online essay writing. For more information, go to or contact the Office of Postsecondary Education at (773) 553-2108.

ARTS ED STUDY A study by the 3D Group of Berkeley, Calif., found that 84 percent of students in schools with the Chicago-based Reading in Motion program were reading at or above grade level, compared to only 27 percent of students in comparable schools. The program, formerly known as Whirlwind, uses music, dance and drama to help teach reading skills.

Comings & Goings

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AT CLARK STREET Peggy Davis, chief of staff to CEO Arne Duncan, has resigned to return to Winston & Strawn, the Chicago law firm where she previously was partner. A replacement has not been named. … Alfred Williams of the Office of Accountability has been named director of a new program to help struggling students make the transition to high school. … Analila Chico, principal of Healy, was named area 12 instructional officer, replacing Emil DeJulio, who is now Area 6 AIO. Mary Jo Nyhan, former principal at the now-closed Arts of Living Alternative School, replaces Chico as acting principal. … Andrea Kerr, an administrator reporting to the Chief Education Officer, has retired after 36 years with CPS. A replacement has not been named.

MOVING IN/ON Reginald Jones, former program officer at The Joyce Foundation, has joined the Steans Family Foundation as executive director, a post that was vacated last spring by Gregory Darneider, who left to head the new CPS office of post-secondary education. … Sylvia S. Gibson, former Chicago director of New Leaders for New Schools, an alternative principal certification program, was hired by School Board President Michael Scott to oversee student test score improvement at Westcott Elementary in West Chatham. New Leaders co-founder Benjamin Fenton is the interim director.

PRINCIPAL CONTRACTS The following interim principals have been awarded contracts: Lucille Denmark, Reed; Zaida Hernandez, Jungman; Linda Langhart, Songhai; Ana Martinez-Estka, Avondale; Henry R. Thompson III, Colemon; Gail D. Ward, Payton College Prep; Zelma Woodson, Jenner. … Cynthia Miller, assistant principal at Curtis, is interim principal at Fiske.

Assistant principals who have been awarded contracts: Coralia Barraza, Orozco; Lee Jackson, Crown; Barbara B. Sims, Haley; Cora J. Suddoth, Field.

Acting principals who have been awarded contracts: Gwendolyn Boyd, Marshall; Jacqueline Buford-Gage, Farren; Pamela G. Dyson, Brooks College Prep; Barbara Kent, Burley; Beverly Ann Martin, Swift; Paula Rossino, Peirce; Linda Sienkiewicz, Audubon; Shelby Taylor, Revere.

Principals whose contracts have been renewed: Alford G. Bridges, Gresham; Frank Candioto, Foreman; Keith P. Foley, Lane Tech; Jerryelyn L. Jones, Curie High; Saundra Jones, West Park; Rebecca McDaniel, Suder; Angelena Smith, Carroll/Rosenwald; Miguel Velazquez, Whitney.

Other new principal contracts include: Ceola Davis-Barnes, formerly principal at now-closed Terrell, is contract principal at Neil; Phyllis M. Hodges, teacher coordinator for CPS human resources, Fenger High; John S. Katzberger, assistant principal at Hamline, Graham; Rudy Lubov, formerly principal at Bateman, Gale; Jarvis Sanford, New Leaders for New Schools intern, Wendell Smith.

PRINCIPAL RETIREMENTS Patricia Mizerka, Irving; Rita Ortiz, assistant principal at Norwood Park, becomes principal. Shirley J. Woodard, William H. King; Assistant Principal Shelton Flowers becomes acting principal. Principal Kent Nolen of Harper High has resigned; Ronn Gibbs, management support director of Region 5, becomes principal.

SERVICE FOR DOLLARS Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich plans to introduce legislation next spring that would require state merit scholarship winners to complete at least 50 hours of community service before receiving a $1,000 cash prize. Blagojevich says he aims to extend the requirement to all students, which would make Illinois the second state in the nation with such a policy.

AWARDS The leadership team of Parents United for Responsible Education (PURE) Chicago—Johnny O. Holmes, Wanda Hopkins, Ismael Vargas and Julie Woestehoff—and Arnold Aprill, director of the Chicago Arts Partnerships in Education, are winners of Ford Foundation leadership awards. The honor recognizes outstanding leaders who successfully tackle tough social problems. Each organization will receive $100,000 to advance their work, and another $15,000 for support activities.