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Little LittleStories Storiesabout aboutBig BigSteps Steps FallFall 2012, Issue 2 2 2012, Issue

These Alain Locke Charter School students will attend college in 2023.



Little Stories about Big Steps Fall 2012, Issue 2

IN THIS ISSUE Greetings from The Alain Locke Initiative Alain Locke Charter School Teaching Hospital and Laboratory Site The Ryan Fellowship Victoria Jackson: Transformational Leader External Relations SWC Advances, Leads, and Inspires Inner-City Teaching Corps ICTC: New Program, Greater Impact

LEADERSHIP TEAM Claire Hartfield

Chief Operating Officer

Elaine Berndes

Managing Director, The Ryan Fellowship

Emily Herrick

Managing Director, Inner-City Teaching Corps

Patrick Love

Principal, Alain Locke Charter School

Eileen Mullin-Gasteier

Vice President, External Relations

BOARD Pat Ryan, Jr.

Founder, The Alain Locke Initiative Chief Executive Officer, INCISENT Technologies

Greg Jones

Chief Operating Officer, The Edgewater Funds

Bryant Keil

Chairman of the Board, Potbelly Sandwich Works

Larry Levy

Founder and Chairman, Levy Restaurants

Jim O’Connor, Jr.

Managing Director, Chicago, MVC Capital

Joe Scoby

Chief Executive Officer, Peak6 Investments

Brad Sullivan

Chief Executive Officer, Group6 Trading

Keep This As Your Daily Reminder: The achievement gap is real. Its existence means that certain students will have the resources to succeed and others will not.

Alain Locke Charter School Students

Alain Locke Charter School students benefit from instruction based on 8.3 hours of lesson planning each week

89% of Alain Locke Charter School students meet or exceed Illinois state standards

Chicago Comparison Students

Alain Locke Charter School comparison students receive instruction based on 4.5 hours of lesson planning each week

59% of Alain Locke Alain Locke Charter School students have 190 academic school days each year

Charter School comparison students in low income areas meet or exceed Illinois state standards

The achievement gap is not about students who are failing - it is about schools that are failing our students. The Alain Locke Initiative works to close the achievement gap by energizing urban schools with the high-impact leaders of today and tomorrow.

Alain Locke Charter School comparison students in low income areas have 170 academic school days each year

Greetings from The Alain Locke Initiative


e are excited to share with you the great strides we have taken over the past year to increase our impact in accelerating achievement for a growing number of students in Chicago and across the nation.

Your investment in our work is instrumental to this growth. Thank you for your continued passion and partnership in closing the achievement gap through the development of leaders in schools. A newsletter cannot report on all of the many achievements that The Alain Locke Initiative principals, teachers, and students have accomplished. In these pages, you will find snapshots that exemplify the power of our strategic focus on leadership to make a sustaine difference. Looking ahead, we are focused on growing our impact. Every leader we develop can accelerate the achievement of 500 students each year. Through The Ryan Fellowship, Inner-City Teaching Corps, and Alain Locke Charter School as a “teaching hospital” and “laboratory” for school leaders, we are making a significant difference. We look forward to continued close communication with you, our valued partners. Together, we can close the achievement gap. Claire Hartfield, Chief Operating Officer The Alain Locke Initiative

Alain Locke Charter School is one of five Illinois Charter Schools highlighted by INCS for Innovative Practices to Challenge how Schools and Systems Operate.

Illinois Network of Charter Schools Summer 2012 Policy Brief: Moving Toward a Longer, Smarter School Day and School Year

Alain Locke Charter School: Teaching Hospital and Laboratory Site Alain Locke Charter School is getting it right. Having moved student achievement from 12% to 89% meeting or exceeding standards in reading and math on the ISAT, Alain Locke Charter School earned the record for #1 test score gains in Illinois history. Our results have received national recognition, including the U.S. Department of Education’s spotlight as 1 of 7 schools nationwide best “Closing the Achievement Gap.” Having cracked the code for success, we are not content to limit our impact to the 580 students of Alain Locke Charter School. Last year, the charter school began opening its doors to share the secrets of success with urban schools from around the globe. A basic tenet of The Alain Locke Initiative is that how you accelerate student achievement is as important, yet more elusive, than what is needed. To better demonstrate the how, Alain Locke Charter School

is implementing “teaching hospital” and “laboratory” models to train urban school leaders. Our Ryan Fellows rotate through the school during their Field Study, using the concept of an expert training a novice in a hands-on experience. Additionally, leveraging the school as a live, interactive case study of success, urban school leadership teams participate in a unique series of workshops that turn theory into practice. These leadership workshops focus on preparation for the Common Core Standards, which is one of the most pressing issues facing schools across Illinois. Since the inception of this combined teaching hospital and laboratory model, over 60 school leaders from Chicago and as far away as the United Kingdom have come through our doors to learn how to emulate Alain Locke Charter School’s unprecedented success.

The Alain Locke Initiative has taken a different approach to replicating the success of its charter school. We believe that unleashing the potential of students and staff goes beyond bricks and mortar. It’s found in transformational leadership.

Leadership Workshop at Alain Locke Charter School

Victoria Jackson: Transformational Leader Victoria Jackson had been preparing her whole career for a chance to make a huge impact in urban education. Knowing she needed the opportunity to step back and crystallize her plan, she sought out The Ryan Fellowship as the pathway to become a transformational urban school principal. An ideal candidate for The Ryan Fellowship, Victoria consistently accelerated student academic achievement in some of Chicago’s most underresourced classrooms. In one year alone, she moved a classroom from 63% to 81% in meeting or exceeding state standards in reading while serving a leadership role to drive growth schoolwide. Chosen as a 2012 Ryan Fellow from among the most highly qualified educators nationwide, Victoria is deeply committed to closing the achievement gap and at the inflection point of her career.

As part of the Fellowship, Victoria completed a Field Study at Noble Street’s Muchin College Prep, where she conducted action research in a real school setting – evolving her roadmap and honing necessary skills to become a transformational school leader. In May, she was hired by Victory Education Partners to lead the turnaround of CICS Basil’s Middle School Campus. Serving a population of 94% low income families, Basil was on probation after a steady decline in academic performance. Victory knew they needed a principal with the ability to transform a school. Victoria’s year-long experience is translating into immediate success at Basil. There is a palpable change in the school’s culture due to Victoria’s ability to create a team and environment that catalyzes achievement accelerating growth.

“Ms. Jackson is incredibly resilient and adaptable amidst change and uncertainty. She absorbs stress and powers through formidable solutions to model for and support her team.” Aimee Omenazu, ICTC Class of 2014 and First Year Teacher at Basil

The Ryan Fellowship, Summer 2012

Victoria Jackson, Ryan Fellow

SWC Advances, Leads, and Inspires Alain Locke Students SWC models the impact corporate philanthropy can have on the lives of students in underresourced communities.

interest in technology and engineering, the partnership continues to develop and align to support the school’s academic priorities.

Last school year, SWC reached out to Alain Locke Charter School with a desire to leverage the company’s passion for technology and community outreach in a way that is having a lasting impact on the school’s 580 students.

One key piece of the partnership involves desktop virtualization rarely used in an elementary school setting - making it faster and easier for student use and simplifying computer maintenance, significantly reducing future technology costs and allowing the school to allocate resources to other important school needs.

SWC Technology Partners is an award-winning provider of IT solutions with a 30-year track record for delivering exceptional customer service. A key player in the technology industry, SWC’s strategic philanthropic model stands as a testament to the company’s commitment to the world of information technology. Beginning with the launch of a Robotics Club to boost students’

This October, SWC honored former team member Andrew Hill, a young and gifted math enthusiast who passed away earlier in the year, by making a memorial gift in Andrew’s name to the school’s math program. Andrew’s earnest dedication to the field of math will have a longstanding legacy at Alain Locke Charter School through a multitude of math supports made possible by this memorial gift.

By promoting children’s interest in engineering, technology, and math, SWC strengthens the foundation for our students’ future careers in these fields, which folds back into the company’s mission of delivering high-impact technology solutions.

Alain Locke Charter School Robotics Club

ICTC: New Program, Greater Impact Inner-City Teaching Corps (ICTC) has been considered Chicago’s premier program for developing highly effective teachers for twenty years.

more opportunities to retain and build the capacity of their talented mid-career teachers to become the next generation of school leaders.

Our unparalleled expertise in coaching, training, and professional development has delivered 400 high-impact teachers to Chicago’s most underresourced classrooms. Now, ICTC stands at a tremendously exciting juncture.

In light of this call to action, The Alain Locke Initiative will train and develop qualified instructional leaders. This evolution of ICTC focuses on engaging our successful and accomplished alumni as well as other talented mid-career teachers to have schoolwide impact.

A successful trait of The Alain Locke Initiative is our entrepreneurial approach in responding to the needs of students and schools combined with an unwavering commitment to our mission of closing the achievement gap.

By equipping schools with such instructional leaders, who set clear schoowide goals, manage curriculum, monitor lesson plans, and coach other teachers, we will increase our reach to the students most impacted by the achievement gap and directly affect their success.

Over the course of the last five years, the need for high-impact, entry-level teachers has shifted. Our program partners are seeking

To follow ICTC during this transition, please visit

Teacher effectiveness is a key lynchpin to closing the achievement gap.

Alain Locke Charter School Classroom


For more event photos, please visit

Impact Dinner: September 19, 2012

Stuart and Karin Larkins, Pat Ryan, Jr.

Al McNally and Amanda McNally

Bryant Keil, Andrea and Charles Young

Shirley and Pat Ryan

Brad Sullivan, Stephanie Ross, and Susan Flynn

Oh, the Places We’ll Go! Fundraiser: June 21, 2012 Nghiem Bui

Tammy Montgomery, Kelly McHugh, Leslie Bartula, and Marissa Kumabe

Carol Lee, Dake Hubbard, and Maia Tekle

Brittany Geary, Audrey Arp, Brandy Simon, and Melissa Moore

328 S. Jefferson Suite 570 Chicago, IL 60661 Inner-City Teaching Corps (ICTC) Alain Locke Charter School The Ryan Fellowship

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To get involved please contact us: 312.216.1700

Photography by: Jackie Jasperson Photography and Dustin Johnston Productions

Fall / Winter 2012 Newsletter  

The Alain Locke Initiative Fall / Winter 2012 Newsletter

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