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Showing posts from August, 2016

Program Helps Close Summer Learning Gap

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by Liz McChesney, Director of Children and Family Services, Chicago Public LibraryAccording to the National Summer Learning Association, every summer, low-income youth lose two to three months in reading while their higher-income peers make slight gains. Most youth lose about two months of math skills in the summer. This phenomenon contributes to gaps in achievement throughout the child’s life effecting future employment, and college and career success. To help reverse this discouraging trend in Chicago, Chicago Public Library (CPL), launched a 10-week summer learning program, Rahm’s Readers Summer Learning Challenge. This initiative provides opportunities for youth throughout Chicago to grow and learn while out of schools, including STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Math) programs developed in partnership with the Museum of Science and Industry.Youth who enrolled in the Summer Learning Challenge–particularly the youngest and most engaged—showed 15 percent greater readi…

WWII Veterans Receives Legion of Honor Medal

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In July, John Chrenka (age 94), WWII veteran from Berwyn, Illinois, received the Legion of Honor medal—the highest distinction awarded by France. This honor was given to him for his service in Omaha Beach and across northern France.John Chrenka enlisted in the army in 1942 and served until the war ended in 1945. He accepted his medal from French Consul General, Vincent Floreani at the First Division Museum at Cantigny Park in Wheaton. During the ceremony First Division Museum’s Andrew Woods performed a song that Chrenka wrote as a young soldier in England. As Andrew sang, Chrenka remembered every single word of his song and, in a soft voice, began to sing along.This is the latest honor for the already decorated Sergeant Chrenka who also has a Bronze Star and fought in the Battle of the Bulge.