The Board of Education of Park Ridge-Niles School District 64 at its April 11, 2018 meeting confirmed the appointment of Christa Donnelly as the new full-time Assistant Principal of Franklin School effective July 26, 2018. Earlier this spring, the Board approved a plan to provide separate, full-time assistant principals for both Franklin and Carpenter Schools in lieu of sharing a single assistant.
“We are extremely pleased to welcome Mrs. Donnelly, who is an experienced administrator already well acquainted with the demands of helping lead within a fast-paced school environment focused on meeting the needs of every child,” according to Superintendent Laurie Heinz.
“Her growth mindset as well as her success in working cooperatively with staff and maintaining strong connections with parents will make Mrs. Donnelly an effective, student-centered partner with Principal Claire Kowalczyk to lead Franklin School forward in reaching its continuous improvement goals,” Dr. Heinz noted.
“Further, her special education background is an added benefit and has given her a keen understanding of the importance of using data to guide and plan for instruction to create positive outcomes for general as well as special education students, both academically as well as in their social emotional learning,” Dr. Heinz added.
Mrs. Donnelly has served for four years as Coordinator for Student Services (similar to an assistant principal) in Highland Park District 112, where she also served as an extended school year administrator. Earlier in her career, she was a special education teacher in both Skokie/Morton Grove School District 69 and Evanston School District 65.
A graduate of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Mrs. Donnelly has a master’s degree from the University of Illinois at Chicago and will receive a second master’s from Concordia University this spring.
Mrs. Donnelly was selected following a lengthy review process from an initial pool of 112 applicants. Paper and phone screenings yielded six semi-finalists, who were interviewed by Assistant Superintendent for Human Resources Joel Martin, Dr. Kowalczyk and Carpenter Principal Brett Balduf. These semi-finalists were also interviewed by a committee of District and elementary building administrators. Three finalists then met with a committee of administrators and 10 Carpenter and Franklin staff members. Following an extensive background and reference check, Dr. Heinz selected Mrs. Donnelly for the post.
PHOTO: Mrs. Christa Donnelly