Serena Peterson-Klosa came to Chicago Public Schools (CPS) in 1991. She began teaching as an 8th Grade Math and Science teacher at Pulaski Fine Arts Academy (now named Pulaski International School of Chicago). Before she left to become the assistant principal at McAuliffe Elementary School, she was named a Golden Apple Award Finalist.
Serena is the principal of Ebinger Elementary School. Ebinger is a high-achieving school that meets the needs of all students, including a significant number of diverse learners. The school offers a fine and performing arts program, which is integrated into various academic areas. Two years ago, Ebinger launched an International Baccalaureate (IB) program, which features a challenging and academically advanced curriculum that stresses global citizenship. Ebinger anticipates becoming an authorized IB school the spring of 2017. Serena earned her Bachelors in Elementary Education from Western Illinois University and her Masters in Leadership and Policy Studies from Loyola University Chicago.
Serena applied for the 2016-17 Cahn Fellows Program to expand her network of principal peers and to push her own professional learning. Working with her assistant principal as her Cahn Ally, Serena has developed a theory of action this year to increase teacher-to-teacher trust through constructive feedback during peer observations. The instructional focus for those peer observations is centered on culturally relevant instruction using literacy, media and non-biased lessons. As much as she enjoys collaborating with her teachers and community members, the best part of her job is interacting with her students.