News Post

Following the resignation of the Jefferson Elementary school Principal in May, the Elmhurst District 205 administration began searching for a new leader for the school. With a mission to bring in top talent to ensure a continued high quality education for the Jefferson students, the position was posted and the process began.  

The District received 61 applications for the position and ten were selected for initial screening. Following these screenings, a total of three candidates rose to the top and were identified as finalists to attend an in-person interview with a panel that included district administration, leaders from schools throughout the District and other staff from Jefferson Elementary.  Throughout the process, Lori Sweeney consistently stood out as the top candidate. 

Bringing 20-years of experience, including a diverse portfolio which includes positions both locally and nationally, Lori Sweeney’s career emerged with attention to improving students’ outcomes, fostering teamwork, creating a collaborative culture and achieving student-focused goals. Mrs. Sweeney began her career as a kindergarten teacher, quickly rising as a leader, becoming a Master Teacher and then principal in just over a year before then entering into coaching and strategy.  

Most recently Mrs. Sweeney has worked as an Instructional Support Leader for one of Chicago's highest performing network of schools. Prior to this she was an executive director at The Achievement Network (ANet) where she managed a team of coaches. Under her leadership, they saw gains of over 1.5 times in reading attainment and over double the gains in math attainment on the NWEA MAP.  ANet is a nonprofit organization with a mission of being dedicated to the idea that every child deserves an excellent education and the opportunities it provides through an integrated system of tools and training, ANet helps schools and districts boost student learning with great teaching that’s grounded in learning standards, informed by data, and built on the successful practices of educators around the country.

“I was extremely impressed by the level of talent that each of these candidates brought with them. As an Executive Director at ANet, Mrs. Sweeney led a team that coached approximately 50 schools that stretched across Illinois, Minnesota and Missouri where she consistently provided supportive coaching and development of others to achieve collective goals as a collaborative community. That vast experience will prove to be such an important asset to the District,” said Dr. Keisha Campbell, Superintendent. “We are honored that Mrs. Sweeney chose District 205 and I look forward to seeing the positive impact that she will make with our district and the success of our students, teachers and staff.” 

“I am thrilled to be joining the Jefferson community and Elmhurst District 205,” said Mrs. Sweeney. “Throughout the interview process, I've met so many wonderful people, and it's clear that Jefferson is a joyful, dynamic, student-centered environment. I am looking forward to continuing to learn about Jefferson and its traditions, and to working alongside teachers, students and families. I can't wait to get started!” 

Mrs. Sweeney holds a Masters in Teaching, an Education Specialist degree and a Bachelor of Art History and Journalism. She will begin her position on July 2, 2022. The Jefferson community will have an opportunity to meet Mrs. Sweeney prior to the start of the year. The District will share details about the community meet-and-greet at a later date.

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