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Prairie Crossing teachers are honored

GRAYSLAKE – The Prairie Crossing Charter School community recently congratulated Heather Jackson and Danielle Venegoni, who were both named to receive Awards of Recognition as early career educator and classroom teacher, respectively, through the Those Who Excel education awards program.

The Illinois State Board of Education’s Those Who Excel program recognizes educators from all areas of the educational spectrum – individuals who have demonstrated exemplary contributions to the students within their schools and communities. 

Venegoni believes “that each child is a unique individual who needs a secure, caring, and stimulating atmosphere in which he or she can grow and mature emotionally, intellectually, physically, and socially.” This sentiment perfectly captures the essence of an educator who believes in creating a safe and open environment for students that is conducive to learning.

Her students agree. One student reports, “She treats all students with respect and is willing to do a lot of extra work to make school a better place for her students.”

One of Jackson’s students shared, “If every student could have a teacher with the passion, energy, and love that Mrs. Jackson displays every day, not only would the world be a better place, but all students would thrive and be able to meet their academic challenges with confidence.”

Jackson’s enthusiasm, compassion and constant desire to improve every day is evident in the relationships she has built with her students.

One of her role models taught her that “a teacher should teach more than his content area, but should also teach ‘life’; hard lessons, what it means to be a contributing member of society, and how to survive in the real world.”

Jackson takes this advice to heart. 

Jackson and Venegoni will be recognized with other honorees on Oct. 20 at the 44th Those Who Excel banquet.

Prairie Crossing Charter School is a free public school serving residents of the Woodland and Fremont school districts.

Admission to Prairie Crossing Charter School is on a nondiscriminatory basis with respect to race, ethnicity and religious preferences. Prairie Crossing Charter School commits to ensuring the transportation needs of all its students are met. Prairie Crossing Charter School provides a full complement of services as may be required for students with disabilities or Limited English Proficiency and provides fee waivers for those families whose income level qualifies based upon federal standards provided by the USDA.

Information on the school can be found at 

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