School District 57
From the Desk of the Superintendent
Friday, February 17, 2023
Dear D57 Families,
At any given point in the school year, countless successes are happening all throughout our district. At last night’s Board Meeting, I had the pleasure of being reminded of this fact. Most of the evening was made up of a collection of reports on various remarkable District 57 projects and initiatives. I wanted to share these successes with you. It’s important to take a moment now and again to reflect on our successes, to see what all of our efforts can lead to - only then can we get back to the important work we do every day with a renewed vigor and clarity of vision.
Katie Kelly - the principal at Lions Park Elementary School - celebrated all of the community-building events at the school, including team-building activities for staff, enhanced student relationship efforts, and wonderful community connection initiatives that deeply underscore the importance of community with our staff and student base. During this presentation, Katie highlighted Lions Park’s annual blanket-making event called Knots of Love. This event honors former D57 student Lauren Graver’s wish to bring some comfort and warmth to children facing serious health issues. Take a few moments to learn more about Knots of Love here. To symbolize our students translating these community-building efforts into their own lives, Katie honored a group of District 57 students who organized an impromptu fundraiser. This past October, these students (pictured) performed mini concerts door-to-door in their neighborhood to raise money to support children’s cancer research. You can read more about these student’s successes here.
Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) announced two District 57 staff members will receive awards in late April at the 49th Annual Those Who Excel & Teacher of the Year Awards Banquet. Danielle Crandall - the principal of Westbrook School for Young Learners since 2021 - will receive an award for Meritorious Service in the Admin professional category. And Steve Shaffer - both the physical education teacher at Lions Park Elementary School and the Lincoln Middle School Cross Country and Track Coach - will receive a Special Recognition award in the Teacher professional category. This program honors educators who have “made significant contributions to our state's public and nonpublic elementary and secondary schools,” according to ISBE’s website. Congratulations, Danielle and Steve!
This January, Shaffer was also awarded the Distinguished Middle School Coach Award from the Illinois Track & Cross Country Coaches Association (ITCCCA). This much-deserved recognition comes after three decades of coaching cross-country in District 57.
Danielle Crandall - principal at Westbrook School for Young Learners - celebrated her school’s Kindness Club, a staff-run initiative that provides young learners with the opportunity to learn and practice kindness. You can see this amazing program in action here.
You can view the updated Superintendent Goals presented at last night’s Board Meeting here. This document is an essential communications tool to report the progress made to date on the established goals set for my role and the district. These goals include ensuring: 1) outstanding student performance, 2) coherent and rigorous programs and services, 3) safe, caring, supportive learning environment, 4) climate and communications, 5) high-qualified staff, and 6) healthy financial position.
Last weekend, a group representing the many stakeholders in our district met for our Strategic Planning Summit, a work session meant to help define the vision for the district and pave a path for the next five years. This incredible group spent countless hours defining, debating, and discussing the strengths of our district, its weaknesses, opportunities, and threats. The work of this group will continue in the months to come, with a goal being that we finalize the 5-Year Strategic Plan by June with the intent on launching it in the 2023-2034 school year.
If you missed last night’s Board Meeting, you can view a recording here. District 57 is in a period of exciting growth and increased connection, and I am so honored to be in the superintendent seat to witness it all. I deeply thank you for your ongoing partnership and commitment to the district and its invaluable children. Have a wonderful long weekend!
In the spirit of education,
Dr. Mary Gorr
Superintendent of Schools
Mount Prospect School District 57
ABOVE: Some of the amazing D57 Stakeholders who participated in the Strategic Planning Summit on February 10-11. We were thrilled to have representatives from many different groups, including former D57 Students, D57 Staff and Families, the D57 Board of Education, Prospect Hight School Administration, and D57 Administration.
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Dr. Mary Gorr
Location: 701 West Gregory Street, Mount Prospect, IL, USA