Register now for our renowned professional development institutes taking place on December 4th.
Header image

Polaris Charter Academy Head of School Michelle Navarre Receives 2017 Silverberg Leadership Award

  • Date

  • Author

    Kat Klopp

The Silverberg Leadership Award, created by EL Education Board Member Irwin Silverberg, is given to an exemplary school leader who has raised student achievement through deep implementation of EL Education practices.

Michelle Navarre, Head of School of Polaris Charter Academy, a K-8 EL Education Credentialed School in Chicago, has received the Silverberg Leadership Award in recognition of her leadership and successful implementation of EL Education pedagogy and culture, fostering outstanding student achievement. She received the award on October 27th at the EL Education 25th Anniversary National Conference in Chicago.

The Silverberg Leadership Award, created by EL Education Board Member Irwin Silverberg, is given to an exemplary school leader who has raised student achievement through deep implementation of EL Education practices.

In accepting the award, Michelle credited her students: “Most of what I know about being a leader I have learned from the true leadership of my school, my students.” She acknowledged the EL Education school model for fostering student leadership and citizenship, adding, “Through a focus on character development, we teach our children to be adaptive, to struggle through adversity and make the sometimes lonely decision to do what is right.” In honor of the event’s focus on 25 years of contributing to a better world, she concluded, “The biggest contribution we can make is not simply the physical work we support our students in creating. Our greatest contribution as educators, as a school, and as a national organization are the children themselves, whose characters we help to shape by supporting them in the creation of work that matters.”

Michelle Navarre School Leader Polaris Silverberg Award Winner 2017 Irwin Silverberg El Education Board Member

A Polaris teacher who nominated Michelle noted: “Through her nurturing, Polaris has grown into a phenomenal space - one that balances the challenges of the neighborhood with the daily challenges of providing an excellent academic and character education for 450 growing students and staff. Michelle has pushed for more, made others see what was possible, and now, has inspired so many to never settle for less.”

A Polaris 8th grader added:

“Ms. Navarre always says that we might be able to go fast alone, but if we want to go far, we have to go together. She always makes sure that we have strong relationships and opportunities to put our heads together to develop new things and become better people.”

Educators nominated for the EL Education Silverberg Award must:

  • Catalyze positive leadership as a shared function in EL Education schools from teachers, parents, and students.
  • Inspire teachers and students to embrace the EL Education culture of quality and collegiality.
  • Create an atmosphere of engagement and high standards for both learning and character.
  • Set a “higher bar” for and recognize excellence among teachers and students.
  • Encourage innovation while providing teachers the means to explore outstanding practices employed in the EL Education community.

In addition to Michelle, nominees for the 2017 Silverberg Leadership Award were:

  • Michael Carbone: Interdistrict School for Arts and Communication - New London, CT
  • James Kutnow: Graham Elementary and Middle School - Columbus, OH
  • Lisa McDonald: Brighten Academy Charter School - Douglasville, GA
  • Jocelyn Smith: Arbor Vitae-Woodruff Elementary School - Arbor Vitae, WI
  • Sharon Brooks: Grandview Elementary School - Charleston, WV
  • Doris Lee: Village Academy Middle School - Far Rockaway , NY
  • Natalie Osborne Smith: Meadow Glen Middle School - Lexington, SC