Posted April 12, 2012 - 1:17pm by Jenise Celestin
Will you be voting for the Local School Council (LSC) representatives on Wednesday, April 18? At first, it might seem pointless for community members to get involved in the governance of their local schools. Unless you're a parent or teacher at that school, why does it matter? Well, it really does matter. These councils control hundreds of thousands of discretionary spending for the schools, and having a strong school in your neighborhood is good for the kids - but also good for real estate values and the overall vibrancy of the community.
Plus, there are a lot of changes happening with CPS this coming school year, including the longer school day and the implementation of a universal Common Core curriculum that will be used to unify all CPS schools. LSCs can truly help shape the impact of these changes to their school and hopefully help make the transition smooth. I was fortunate to attend an Education Forum at North Park University on Tuesday. This forum was hosted by North River Commission and featured CPS Chief Information Officer Jennifer Cheatham and CPS Officer of Portfolio Planning & Strategy Adam Anderson.
Well, a few months ago, I started thinking - "wouldn't it be a logical extension of my personal and professional interests to run for a community seat at one of the local LSCs?" Wouldn't it be a service to the community to leverage all of the work that Swedish Covenant Hospital is doing to help promote wellness throughout our communities? Wouldn't this be a great way to maximize the relationships we have with local businesses, community organizations and ethnic groups - all for the purpose of helping the students and schools achieve greatness?
I'm not the type to self-promote, but it's important to me to tell you that I'm running as a community representative candidate for Edison Regional Gifted Center (4929 N. Sawyer Ave.) in Albany Park. You can read more about my commitment in my candidate statement. This school has some of the best and brightest young people in attendance; they have visited Swedish Covenant Hospital to tour through our state of the art laboratory and advanced radiology departments and we are lucky to have such a high performing school in our local neighborhood. I sincerely hope to be elected - to have the opportunity to help find ways to directly serve these students and enhance the profile of such an exceptional school.
Your vote is important to these schools. I've heard that many of these LSC elections are decided by a margin of just a few votes. So, get out there and vote on Wednesday, April 18 between 6 am and 7 pm at the respective schools. The next generation of your community is counting on you.