Innovation Team & Methodology


    Empower diverse learners* to collaborate in order to develop equitable and inclusive learning environments, which leads to actions that impact student growth and potential.

    *A Learner is everyone/anyone


    Professional learning is designed to refine and expand knowledge, skills, attitudes, and practices in order to impact student growth through intentional, continuous, and collaborative engagement.


    • High Expectations: Ambitious goals lead to powerful actions and outcomes.
    • Diversity: Diversity and inclusivity strengthen an organization and improve its decisions and outcomes.
    • Impact: Evaluation and reflection strengthen performance and results.
    • Collaboration: An organization’s culture and climate build shared responsibility for learning that encourages student growth.
    • Shared Leadership/ Expertise: As a cooperative wide community we can solve our most complex problems by tapping internal expertise and knowing when to utilize outside resources.
    • Empowerment: Learners develop personalized plans that are relevant and meaningful to support their continuous improvement.


    • Learning Communities: Professional learning that increases educator effectiveness and results for all students occurs within learning communities committed to continuous improvement, collective responsibility, and goal alignment.
    • Leadership: Professional learning that increases educator effectiveness and results for all students requires skillful leaders who develop capacity, advocate, and create support systems for professional learning.
    • Resources: Professional learning that increases educator effectiveness and results for all students requires prioritizing, monitoring, and coordinating resources for educator learning.
    • Data: Professional learning that increases educator effectiveness and results for all students uses a variety of sources and types of student, educator, and system data to plan, assess, and evaluate professional learning.
    • Learning Designs: Professional learning that increases educator effectiveness and results for all students integrates theories, research, and models of human learning to achieve its intended outcomes.
    • Implementation: Professional learning that increases educator effectiveness and results for all students applies research on change and sustains support for implementation of professional learning for long-term change.
    • Outcomes: Professional learning that increases educator effectiveness and results for all students aligns its outcomes with educator performance and student curriculum standards.

    *Adopted from Learning Forward's Standards for Professional Learning


Professional Learning Innovation Team

  • The TrueNorth Professional Learning Innovation Team is hard at work! Their goal is to create a student-centered cooperative-wide professional learning system. Thank you to these dedicated team members from across the cooperative:

    • Amy Holaday, Director of Curriculum and Instruction, District 35
    • Chimille Dillard, Director of Curriculum and Instruction, District 203
    • Denise Matthews, Director of Student Services, Equity, and Inclusion, District 36
    • Jenny Sterpin, Director of Special Education, District 115
    • Jeff McHugh, Director of Teaching and Learning, District 67
    • Becky Mathison, Assistant Superintendent of Curriculum and Instruction, District 31
    • Amy Cohan, District Services Coach, TrueNorth
    • Kristen Ninni, Assistant Superintendent for Instructional Design and Innovation, TrueNorth
    • Lindsay Kiraly, Director of Professional Learning and Coaching, TrueNorth
    • Carol Michels, Director of District Services, TrueNorth
    • Lauren Randazzo, ELS/SLE, TrueNorth
    • Sharon Sheehan, Math Teacher/Instructional Coach, District 225
    • Sami Fahey, Instructional Coach, TrueNorth
    • Tracy Roehrick, Assistant Principal Lake Bluff Elementary School, District 65
    • Lauren Schulman, Director of Student Services, District 30
    • Rachel Pollera, Special Education Teacher, District 30
    • Ivy Sukenik, Principal Sunset Ridge School, District 29
    • Amy Zima, Early Childhood, TrueNorth
    • Tracy Hellner, Parent Facilitator, TrueNorth
    • Vanessa Reakes, Instructional Coach, North Shore District 112
    • Lisa Rand, Teaching Assistant, TrueNorth
    • Erin Karson, Professional Learning Specialist, TrueNorth