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Catherine Plocher


Augustus H. Burley Elementary School

Catherine Plocher is entering her sixth year as the principal of Augustus H. Burley Elementary School (Burley), a neighborhood magnet cluster school where literature, writing and technology are at the heart of the student experience. In 2016, Catherine began two new strands of curriculum, STEAM and Sustainability, to enrich authentic learning, and to encourage students to impact the world around them through action, research and social justice.

In the upcoming school year, Catherine plans to continue developing an inquiry to action focus in the school’s instruction, and to build and develop more proactive systems for students to take leadership roles within Burley and in the surrounding community.

Catherine received a bachelor’s degree in education from Illinois State University, with endorsements in social science, literacy and reading. She obtained her master’s degree in literacy from the University of Illinois at Chicago and a master’s in administration from Loyola University Chicago. Her career in Chicago education began in 1999, as a classroom teacher and later a curriculum coach and reading specialist across a region of CPS schools. She served as the assistant principal at Burley for two years, before taking her current role as principal in 2012.

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