Butler Junior High Principal Amy Read was selected as a 2019 finalist for the distinguished Golden Apple Awards for Excellence in Leadership, it was announced Feb. 7.
She is one of eight principals/heads of school selected as a 2019 Finalist, the only one in DuPage County. The Golden Apple Award for Excellence in Leadership honors exemplary performance in school leadership by a principal or head of school who has had a significant and sustained positive impact on the school, created a culture of inclusivity, and delivered dramatic student growth.
“I am honored, but it is testament to all of the exemplary teachers and staff at Butler Junior High who create exceptional opportunities for our students to not only learn, but to thrive,” said Read.
“The Golden Apple is a tremendous honor,” said Superintendent Dr. Heidi Wennstrom, “and recognizes the servant leadership of Ms. Read and her vision for a school where everyone collectively and continually grows, learns and excels.” In addition, Ms. Read creates a culture of trust and partnership with her staff, which empowers them to take risks, to grow as leaders and educators and to collaborate with one another on what is best for students, Wennstrom said.
In fact, results from the Butler Junior High 2018 5Essentials survey, which seeks feedback from parents, teachers and students, are among the highest in the state. On areas of teacher-principal trust, 92 percent of teachers reported positive leadership of the principal. Similarly, 100 percent of teachers feel the principal has confidence in the expertise of teachers, 100 percent believe administrators provide them with useful feedback for their teaching, 100 percent say the principal makes the instructional expectations clear and 100 percent of teachers say they take responsibility for improving the school.
Student achievement is equally as notable. Butler District 53 students ranked No. 2 of all schools in Illinois for their results on the PARCC test. Students, on average, performed at 2-3 grade levels above the national norm on the MAP assessment.
“School leaders serve a critical role in the success of schools -- from establishing a strong vision and culture of exemplary education to ensuring that any barriers to learning are removed, implementing systems and structures that reliably support teachers, and creating a positive environment that allows the students to focus on their learning and life goals,” said Alicia Winckler, Golden Apple CEO. “Golden Apple is thrilled to showcase leaders who optimize the education environment for students.”
Read and other finalists will be honored on Feb. 23 at the Golden Apple Celebration of Excellence in Tinley Park. Leadership Award recipients are selected by master educators and school leaders who understand and recognize balanced and collaborative leadership and who utilize professional standards to assess the culture, innovation, and outcomes achieved by exemplary school leaders. Members of the selection committee are previous Award recipients, district and university leaders who will conduct on-site observations, interviewing finalists’ colleagues including their direct manager(s), other administrators, and teachers as well as those they serve, including students, parents, and community members. The 2019 Golden Apple Award recipients will be notified in the spring with surprise visits at their schools.
Founded in 1985, Golden Apple innovates teacher preparation and leadership to transform both the careers of teachers as well as the lives of students in Illinois.
More on the award can be found at https://www.goldenapple.org/finalists-for-golden-apple-awards-for-excellence-in-leadership-announced