Hawthorne Elementary School

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D205 Board approves Dr. Podraza as new AP for Hawthorne/Lincoln

At its May 23, 2017 meeting, the Elmhurst School District 205 Board of Education voted unanimously to approve Dr. Christina Podraza as the new assistant principal at Hawthorne and Lincoln elementary schools, effective August 1, 2017 with a salary of $91,573. (See related news item on the District 205 homepage.) She replaces Tim Riordan, who was recently confirmed as the new principal of Hawthorne.

Dr. Podraza comes to Elmhurst from Naperville District 203, where she has served as the Learning Support Coach for Mill Street Elementary School since 2012. There she played an integral role in adoption and implementation of Professional Learning Communities (PLCs). She served on the School Improvement Team and was a member of the District 203 Service Delivery Design Committee and the Science Curriculum Committee.


“I am beyond thrilled to be a part of Elmhurst Community Unit District 205! I am looking forward to getting to know the Hawthorne and Lincoln staff, students and families and can’t wait to start my work as assistant principal. I hope that my passion for student engagement and instructional coaching background will be an asset to both buildings,” said Dr. Podraza.

Prior to her tenure in District 203, she was a fifth grade teacher at Schiesher Elementary School in Lisle for four years. There she developed multiple assessments aligned to Common Core, designed authentic, interactive programs which incorporated technology to motivate student learning. She used both qualitative and quantitative data to make decisions regarding curricular planning.

Dr. Podraza was also a classroom teacher in Bensenville District 2, in East Aurora District 131 and served as a long-term sub and reading improvement assistant at Armstrong School in Hoffman Estates.

She earned her bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from Monmouth College (1999), her master’s in Elementary Education from DePaul University (2003) and her doctorate in Educational Leadership & Organizational Change from Roosevelt University (2014).

"I am excited that Christina is joining District 205. Her instructional knowledge, professional development experience and her ability to facilitate PLCs is timely and will help our staff provide exceptional learning experiences to our students,” said Riordan.

“Having Christina join the Lincoln and Hawthorne teams excites me! I am inspired by her energy, passion, and instructional expertise and look forward to working with her to support students, families, and staff,” said Jennifer Barnabee, who will be the new Lincoln Elementary School principal for 2017-18.

Posted by: Katherine Schroeder, District Admin, Elmhurst Community Unit School District 205 Published:5/26/17
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