Community Involvement: 2017
I officially joined the Board of Directors at the North River Commission (NRC) as the Vice President of Education in December 2017.
The North River Commission is the nonprofit community and economic development corporation for the northwest side of Chicago, from the Chicago River to Cicero and Addison to Devon. Founded in 1962 by concerned residents and neighborhood institutions, NRC unites over 100 civic associations, businesses, schools, institutions and places of worship to improve the quality of life in our community by creating affordable housing, quality education, arts & cultural endeavors, open spaces, and thriving neighborhood businesses.
FIVE FAST FACTS
Great meeting last night!
I spent a lot of last night thinking about the image of Roosevelt, Hibbard, and other schools in the neighborhood. (I have been thinking about it since meeting with Ruby during the interviews.) It got me thinking about what press relations look like for schools and how press can change the image of a school. Then, I thought about the following campaign:
5 fast facts that you didn't know about ___________.
For Roosevelt, it could be things like the ROTC program or the Culinary Program. For APMA it could be the after school program. For Hibbard, the engaged Friends of Group.
Perhaps this is a pie in the sky idea, but maybe it is one we can brainstorm further? I am also not suggesting you take this on by any means!
I officially joined the Local School Council at Albany Park Multicultural Academy.
I officially joined the North River Commission Education Committee.
I attended my first Local School Council meeting at Albany Park Multicultural Academy in May 2017. Local School Councils are responsible for the following:
Approving the school based academic plan (CIWP)
Approving the alignment of budgetary resources to the CIWP
Engaging in the annual evaluation of contract principal’s professional practices
Selecting or renewing contract principals
I continued attending Local School Council meetings at Albany Park Multicultural Academy throughout the rest of the school year.
NRC & CMAP
Hosted by the North River Commission, I attended a Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning (CMAP) meeting to discuss the development of a strategic neighborhood plan. Attendance at such meetings is essential. Neighbors, business owners, and local stakeholders gather to share their vision for Albany Park, North Park, North Mayfair, Mayfair, and Ravenswood Manor, and to express concerns and ask questions that relate to diversity, affordable housing, transportation, economic development, and the environment. A big question on many participants' minds was how do we best preserve and promote the diversity in our community.
My passion for education started at an earlier age. I can still hear my grandmother saying to me, "Remember Lauren, the only thing a person can't take away from you is your education."
I attended my first North River Commission Education Committee workshop in January 2017. This workshop focused on how to create Friends Of groups. The information I gathered that night would be essential a year and a half later during the formation of the Friends of Roosevelt High School.
Women's March 2017
I attended the Women's March on January 21, 2017, in Chicago, IL. At the march, I asked a nearby protester, who was adorned with protest pins and buttons from the 1970s and 1980s, how can we sustain this level of activism. She looked at me and said, "We have to love, we have to show up, and we have to write checks."
I attended my very first Albany Park Neighbors meeting, and the turnout was incredible. It appeared that many neighbors, quite like myself, felt the urge to become more connected to their community. I am so thankful for the space that Albany Park Neighbors creates and for their efforts to bring together Albany Park residents of the 33rd, 35th, and 39th Wards.