OPRF faculty and staff receive awards

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By Community Editor

COURTESY OF OAK PARK AND RIVER FOREST HIGH SCHOOL

English teacher Jessica Stovall has won the Fulbright Distinguished Award in Teaching. Ms. Stovall will spend first semester next year in New Zealand, where schools have an achievement gap between white and Maori students that mirrors the gap between white students and students of color in the United States. She will be doing intensive work to study successful approaches for closing the gap at schools in New Zealand, then implementing those ideas with a cohort of teachers at OPRF. More information.

School nurse Mary Ellen Sjostrom has been honored with the Fitzsimmons Award for Excellence in Public Health, given by the Oak Park Board of Health and the Oak Park Department of Public Health. Sjostrom received the award because "for nearly 20 years, [she] has been the first responder to the health needs of the thousands of Oak Park residents who attend Oak Park River and Forest High School. Her nomination noted her gracious and compassionate spirit." More information.

Japanese teacher Yoko Schmadeke has won the 2014 Cultural Achievement Award from the Japan America Society of Chicago. Ms. Schmadeke received the award, given annually to someone who has contributed to the knowledge and appreciation of  Japanese culture, for organizing OPRF's exchange program with Japanese students as well as creating the school's annual Japanese Festival.

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