District 54 names six Ensuring Student Success Award winners
District 54 is proud to announce the following recipients of the district’s 2020 Ensuring Student Success Awards.
- Julie Gorvett, principal of the District 54 Early Learning Center, won in the administrator category.
- Eric Jonasson, a District 54 maintenance technician at the Rafferty Administration Center, won in the unlicensed support staff category.
- The District 54 Mentor Team of Tara Cusack, Michelle Felice, Laura Marchant and Dilshad Patel won in the team category.
- Maggie Joyce, an English-Spanish Dual Language teacher at Frost Junior High School, won in the classroom teacher category.
- Ann-Marie Cerny, a social worker at Addams Junior High School, won in the licensed support staff category.
- Julia Bolotin, a fifth-grade teacher at John Muir Literacy Academy, won in the early career educator category.
From positive daily interactions with students and staff to strong relationships with families to support the needs of students, Julie Gorvett’s leadership as principal of District 54’s Early Learning Center has had a tremendous impact on District 54’s youngest learners. Julie maintains high expectations for all students and believes deeply in the mission to ensure their academic, social and emotional success. For example, Julie evaluated the entrance criteria to ensure students with the most significant need are provided the time and opportunity they need and provided staff the support to do this complex work successfully.
Whenever a maintenance, mechanical or building operations issue comes up in District 54, Eric Jonasson is part of the solution. From fixing a leaking pipe to installing new technology in classrooms, Eric does everything he can to make sure students learn in a safe, comfortable environment. Eric is positive and approachable and makes it a priority to mentor and teach those he oversees. Eric emphasizes student safety and well-being as a top priority and always responds when there is an emergency maintenance issue to ensure schools are ready for students the next day.
District 54 Mentor Team
The District 54 Mentor Team – Tara Cusack, Michelle Felice, Laura Marchant and Dilshad Patel – not only serves as champions for our students, but also models that behavior for new teachers. This small team provides support to hundreds of teachers showing them what is taught and how to teach it. They also recently expanded their work to include developing a social-emotional learning curriculum, designing student leadership training to support the Student Ambassador program at all of our elementary and junior high schools, and facilitating positive psychology training for new staff.
As the only dual language teacher at Frost Junior High School, Maggie Joyce has made it her mission to be a champion for the many Spanish-speaking families, both in the classroom and outside of school hours. Maggie’s enthusiasm and professionalism is truly contagious, and she serves as a model for her colleagues. Not only does she collaborate diligently with other departments to best support her students throughout the day, she also attends their extracurricular activities, assists Spanish-speaking families, supports other dual language teachers throughout District 54 and serves as the recording secretary and teacher liaison for the Frost PTA.
At Addams Junior High School, Ann-Marie Cerny supports students that have severe physical limitations and does it in a way that makes them feel joy and care. Outside of the traditional school day, Ann-Marie runs the Addams Ambassador Council and Partners Club, and is an integral part of the District 54 Special Olympics program. She brings students of all abilities together and provides them with rich experiences that last a lifetime. Ann Marie is extremely positive and her attitude is infectious. She inspires others to be better because of who she is and how she supports our District 54 students.
In a mere four years as a part of the fifth-grade team, Julia Bolotin has proven to be the type of teacher everyone wants to be. She works with English Learners and makes sure every student feels honored and respected. She ensures they are able to celebrate their heritage and uses their unique abilities to propel them to achieve at high levels. She makes a point of connecting with families, which sends a powerful message to students that she values them as people. Julia is a collaborative, supportive colleague whose passion and dedication shines through in everything she does. She always strives to learn and grow and inspires others to do the same.