On Monday, June 11th, 2018, the Evanston/Skokie School District 65 Board of Education approved school and district leadership appointments as recommended by Superintendent Paul Goren. District 65 is excited to announce its newest team members –Keri Mendez, Bessie Rhodes School of Global Studies Principal and Sharon Sprague, Director of Early Childhood Programs. In addition, Dr. Goren announced the appointment of Dr. LaTarsha Green to the position of Executive Director of Black Student Success. Dr. Green is currently serving as principal at Dawes and will transition into her new role over the summer.

As part of the selection process for these positions, leadership profiles were developed collaboratively with various stakeholders to identify the skills and attributes desired for the person in each role. The information contained within the leadership profile for each position was used to select candidates, who were invited to interview for the position. These interviews included a range of stakeholders, with Superintendent Goren making the final recommendation.

Dr. LaTarsha Green, Executive Director of Black Student Success

Before coming to District 65, Dr. Green served as principal at Marquette School of Excellence in Chicago for five years. She has also served as an assistant principal, International Baccalaureate Coordinator, a curriculum and instruction developer, and a classroom teacher and technology coordinator. Dr. Green is a veteran educator with over 20 years of experience in public school settings. She is an advocate for all children and has worked especially closely with staff and families to support English Learners and students receiving specialized services. Dr. Green holds an Ed.D in Education Policy Studies/Urban Leadership from the University of Illinois at Chicago, a Master of Arts in Educational Administration and Supervision from St. Xavier University, a Master of Science in Curriculum and Instruction from Chicago State University, and a Bachelor of Arts in Elementary Education from University of Illinois at Chicago.

Keri Mendez, Principal Bessie Rhodes School of Global Studies

Ms. Mendez has spent the past 7 years as the Co-Principal of Howe School in Chicago Public Schools. Ms. Mendez has also served as an assessor for the Principal Eligibility Process in Chicago.  Prior to school administration, Ms. Mendez served as an instructional coach for teachers with the Academy for Urban School Leadership (AUSL), supporting teachers in creating strong classroom environments as well as the implementation of rigorous instruction.  Ms. Mendez began her teaching career in Evanston at Pope John and worked as a classroom teacher in Chicago Public Schools as well as for the University of Chicago Charter Schools.

Ms. Mendez earned her B.S. in Elementary Education from Butler University, Masters in Reading from Northeastern Illinois University, and M.Ed in School Administration via New Leaders for New Schools from National Louis University. She grew up in Evanston, attending both Orrington and Haven. Ms. Mendez currently lives in Chicago with her husband and 3 children, one who attends a local preschool and two who attend Chicago Public Schools.

Sharon Sprague, Director of Early Childhood Programs

Ms. Sprague has been an educator for almost 20 years, starting as a teaching-artist in New York City. She has also served as a primary grade teacher in Chicago Public Schools (CPS), an early-childhood intervention specialist and special education teacher for D38 Kenilworth, a teacher mentor, and as an Assistant Principal in CPS.

Ms. Sprague has been nominated for the prestigious Golden Apple award for teaching excellence. She is currently a doctoral student in the Urban Educational Leadership Program at the University of Illinois at Chicago. She holds a MS in Early Childhood Development and Education from the Erickson Institute in Chicago, and special education certification from National Louis University.  Early childhood development and issues of educational equity are her professional passions. Her personal passions are her family and friends; she is the mother of two adult children who graduated from Oakton, Chute and ETHS. She currently resides in Chicago with her husband and their tirelessly enthusiastic dog.