Left, Board President Suni Kartha, Joyce Bartz, and Superintendent Paul Goren    RoundTable photo

Joyce Bartz was honored at the District 65 School Board’s June 10 meeting after completing 40 years of service at the District. She started out at Nichols Middle School and finished her tenure as Assistant Superintendent for Special Services. She led special education services in the District for many years, brought restorative justice programs to the District and promoted a safe and supportive climate for students and staff in the schools.

“It’s my great honor and privilege to salute Joyce Bartz,” said Superintendent Paul Goren. “We tease Joyce affectionately that she puts special into special education,” he said. Ms. Bartz does her job “with love for the children that she serves, with love for the families that she serves and love for the School District.

“When you take multiple decades of commitment and focus and attention and care and struggle and pushing forward to do the right thing by children, we have no better colleague than Joyce Bartz.”

Board President Suni Kartha said, “My experience with Joyce has been as a fierce and tireless advocate for students and families in this District.” She said when then they started discussions about equity and Beyond Diversity training, “Joyce was one of the strongest voices from the start that understood and pushed for the work. We’re losing a really dedicated and important voice for our community.”

Board member Candance Chow referred to Ms. Bartz’s efforts “to work toward the environment we want for all of our kids and the success we want for all of our kids. I thank you for that and for your professionalism and your ability to be so creative in the way you look at things and always demand more. I very much appreciate it.”

Sixteen special education supervisors, teachers, paraprofessionals, social workers, and psychologists spoke at the meeting about special education services in the District. They spoke about the many programs Ms. Bartz initiated and her vision, dedication and love for students.  

“This has been my passion,” said Ms. Bartz. “This has been my life’s work. I want to thank you for the opportunity.”

Everyone in the room rose to give Ms. Bartz a standing ovation. 

Larry Gavin was a co-founder of the Evanston RoundTable in 1998 and assisted in its conversion to a non-profit in 2021. He has received many journalism awards for his articles on education, housing and...