RPS 205 assistant principal heads to Harvard

Sometimes leadership is putting people in a position to do their jobs well. That’s especially true when it comes to leading complex organizations like schools. Renee Schott, an assistant principal at Jefferson High School, is heading to a program at Harvard to learn more about leading in her many diverse roles at Jefferson: She’s the Assistant Principal of Curriculum, the principal of the school’s Human & Public Services Academy and the master scheduler. The Golden Apple Foundation of Rockford selected Schott last February as the 2016...

read more

RPS 205 third graders hear about career readiness

If you want to get started on a career, there’s no time like now. That was the message from retired Rockford Public Schools teacher Rich Toppe, who spoke to third-grade students at Welsh Elementary School. His return to the classroom was part of the Golden Apple Foundation of Rockford’s “I Know I Can” college and career readiness event. Toppe joined 30 community volunteers in the weeklong event, which ended today. Toppe is a 2008 Golden Apple winner and 33-year veteran of teaching in RPS 205. He emphasizes with students the importance of...

read more

Acceptance speech from RPS 205 Golden Apple winner shines

Beyer School fifth grade teacher Thomas O’Brien won a 2016 Golden Apple award for excellence in teaching. He found his calling in a classroom, but he could have been a poet. O’Brien’s acceptance speech at the Golden Apple Banquet May 6 was as lyrical as it was inspirational. He began the speech by talking about the history of the neighborhood around Beyer, once home to thriving factories, the Rockford Peaches women’s professional baseball team and several minor league baseball teams. Today, O’Brien said: “Gone are the popular sports teams....

read more

Golden Apple grant feeds students’ appetite for reading

Shortly after Judy Dooley started teaching her fourth-grade class at Washington Academy, it was clear her book collection wouldn’t cut it. These were voracious readers and they liked all kinds of genres. Mrs. Dooley had bought books and beefed up her library, but what she thought were perfectly respectable titles were not OK with the students. So she had an idea: Why not apply for a Golden Apple Foundation classroom grant and make it a class project? Each student wrote a letter. To add value to the teaching moment – beyond the principles of...

read more