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The Greater Auburn-Gresham Development Corporation and the Auburn Gresham community has a strategy to improve the quality of education for people of all ages and help students and parents maximize the school experience. This tab will include information on our school and community based programs and activities.

We are excited about the work we are doing to improve schools in the community. The initiative we created with our community partners, that is currently in the works, called Auburn Gresham Gold (AG GOLD). There are five elementary school partners participating in the Auburn Gresham GOLD Initiative, they are:

Clara Barton Elementary School

John W. Cook Academy

Scott Joplin Elementary School

Richard J. Oglesby Elementary School

Westcott Elementary School

We look forward to working as a community to impact the first five schols that are participating. Implementation, Outreach, Planning and Fundraising continues. We look forward to an exciting year implementing the community-driven education plan.

 2020 Key Dates

Auburn Gresham GOLD Camp Registration is Open!

It is that time of the year again. Camp Registration has officially opened March 10, 2020. Below are the camp application forms and the flyer.  Feel free to download and help us spread the word!
There is an application for KG-5th and a seperate application for 6th-8th.
This year we're adding a performing arts and mentoring piece for our older kids. Please pass it along to the parents and students of our AG Gold School.
Registration is open from March 10th- May 1st. There is also a $25 registration fee.
There are some important dates highlighted below. If you have any questions please refer the application or feel free to contact me. Have a great week.
Camp Registration: March 10, 2020 - May 1, 2020
Camp Run Dates: July 6, 2020 - August 6, 2020
Camp Location: Cook Elementary, 8150 S Bishop St, Chicago, IL 60620  

 2019 Meeting Dates

Auburn Gresham Neighoborhood Network Meeting

GOLD Education Taskforce Meeting

October 24, 2019
12:00pm - 1:30pm

Naomi and Sylvester Smith Community Room
8131 S. Halsted


Auburn Gresham Neighoborhood Network Meeting

GOLD Education Taskforce Meeting

Monday, October 11, 2018, 9:00am - 10:30am, Hosted by Oglesby Elementary School, 7646 S. Green St., Chicago, IL 60620


Auburn Gresham GOLD Education Taskforce Principals Meeting

Monday, Decmber 8, 2017, 9:00am - 10:30am


Auburn Gresham GOLD Education Taskforce Meeting

Monday, November 27, 2017, 9:00am - 10:30am, Hosted by Oglesby Elementary School, 7646 S. Green St., Chicago, IL 60620

MARCH 2017

Students Ecstatic Over Chance The Rapper's Visit And $1 Million Gift

AUBURN GRESHAM — Chance the Rapper, the 2017 Grammy Award winning Chicago-born artist, has set the bar high for what other entertainers should be doing for Chicago Public Schools, one student said.

“I thought it was beyond exciting because so many other rappers make millions and [haven’t done] anything, and [Chance] could’ve done the same,” said 13-year-old eighth grader DeShaun Maxwell.

Chance surprised students at Westcott Elementary, 409 W. 80th St., Monday with an unexpected announcement. He presented a check of $1 million to CPS for arts education. Chance said he also would give $10,000 directly to Westcott Elementary

“This came from ticket sales, from the fans,” said Chance, who attended CPS schools when he was known as Chancelor Bennett.

He said he was doing this because “it’s the right thing to do.”

Although the rapper didn’t attend Westcott for elementary school, he did grow up in the community. Singling the school out meant a lot, DeShaun said, who was present during the news conference.

“It was just dope,” he said.

Keeping students at school where they’re safe is a plan he supports, he said, expressing concern about the violence in the city.

“I don’t want my closest friends to die,” he said.

Glendra Williams, 10 and in the fourth grade, said she doubted that Chance would actually come to her school. When she saw him walk into the library, her mouth dropped and she whispered “Oh my god,” she said.

“He didn’t just want to give money out and get on the cameras, but he actually wanted to help schools,” she said.

Both she and Maxwell called Chance a role model in the community.

“He actually really cares about the school, not just Grammys and money,” Williams said.

The funding will go toward their after school program that focuses on math and reading, as well as programming such as dance and theater, said school principal Monique Dockery.

The call from Chance came Sunday and she said she was very surprised.

“He only said he wanted to discuss funding,” she said.

Westcott Elementary principal Monique Dockery introduces Chance the Rapper.

Photo: DNAinfo/Andrea V. Watson

 The $129 million CPS budget deficit — created when Gov. Bruce Rauner vetoed a bill that would have helped the school district pay its pension bill — threatens to force officials to end the school year on June 1 — 20 days early.

"Gov. Rauner broke his promise to Chicago's children," Chance said.

Chance met with Rauner last week to discuss the budget cuts and how the state could help end the financial crisis that public schools are experiencing. That talk didn’t go well, he said. Over the weekend they spoke again, Chance said, but still no solution was found.

"Our kids should not be held hostage," Chance said, adding that he is "frustrated and disappointed" by Rauner's actions, which he said would put Chicago's children "in harm's way" if there is no school during the month of June.

Rauner should have signed a bill in November that would have given Chicago's schools $215 million to help pay its bills, said Chance.

"Do your job, Gov. Rauner," he said.

The governor’s office didn’t respond to Chance’s announcement, but did mention that Rauner and his wife have donated more than $7 million over the last 20 years directly to organizations that benefit CPS students.

“While the Rauners are passionate donors to our schools, individual contributions will never be enough to address the financial challenges facing CPS," said spokeswoman Eleni Demertzis. "It would be helpful if CPS officials came to Springfield and joined in serious good faith discussions about the long-term stability of all of our schools.”

Chance's donation to Chicago's schools — through the Chicago Public Schools Foundation for Education — will come from the proceeds of his Spring Tour, set to kick off April 24 in San Diego.

Chance said he’s hopeful that the crisis won’t last forever.

“We are going to get pass this,” Chance said.

Rapper and actor Common, also a Chicago native, seems to be on board, Chance said. He texted Chance Monday morning and the two planned to speak over the phone later in the day, he said.

Chance said he’s asking for everyone’s help.

“When I call on you, I’m going to need your help,” he said.

He’s asking for those who are able to donate to Chicago schools. For every $100,000 raised, Social Works Chicago — which Chance co-founded — will donate $10,000.

Some from the community gathered outside of the school anxiously waiting to see Chance up close.

Although many of them didn’t have children who attend the school, they said they support and applaud Chance for what he is doing.

Alicia Timms said more entertainers need to invest in the public schools.

“This shows that he has a vested interest in where he came from,” she said. “He’s not the celebrity that’s up-and-coming and decided to just say ‘Let me just leave and pursue mine.’”

“I’m hoping the money he gave CPS actually is allocated to where it needs to go and not to a school on the North Side or someone's pockets,” Timms said.

Community resident Joy Lyons said that a lot of Chicagoans are fed up with the city and state government and want to see change immediately. She said it shouldn’t have taken this long for someone like Chance to stand up.

“Why did it take for Chance to do it and not other ones to do it?”


Auburn Gresham Health Fair on the Block Is May 25, 2017

Calling all Auburn Gresham Schools! Plan your first outing, for the "Auburn Gresham Health Fair on the Block." This bi-annual event is a gem for the community and our schools. Come participate in exercise for youth, cooking demonstrations and participate in health related activities that impact and help improve the health and wealth our commmunities. May 25th from 10:00am to 2:00pm, on the street between Racine and May, sponsored by our CVS Caremark. DOWNLOAD AND PRINT THE FLYER HEALTH FAIR FLYER AND POST AT YOUR SCHOOL AND IN THE COMMUNITY!


Check out our Giving Tuesday page at http://ILGive/gagdc. Each dollar we raise on November 29, 2016 through #ILGive will help improve opportunities and conditions for children and families to thrive.


From a Looming Strike To Student Joy


Click the link above to read the Parent Coordinators journal of that day....


By Andrea V. Watson | September 6, 2016 10:53am

'What Real Men Look Like':

200 Greet Oglesby Students On 1st Day Back

Read story here

Auburn Gresham GOLD Simeon High School Is "Louder Than A Bomb!"

Congratulations Simeon Career Academy on placing 3rd in the team competition and 1st place in the individual "Louder Than A Bomb #LTAB Competition. Antwon Funches was named winner of LTAB 2015 Indy Finals!

Help Fund iPADs For Our Students!


GADC's Adler University education partners, Jill and Mary have created a campaign aimed at raising money to get some much needed technology resources in our Special Needs classroom (K-4)! The student scholars will utilize the iPads you help provide by using specialized educational programs and software catered to their needs and academic goals.  GADC supports Adler's effort to increase access to technology in our special needs classroom, won't you?



In honor of Black History Month, Thursday, February 11, 2015, the Greater Auburn-Gresham Development Corporation, invited parents of Westcott Elementary School to join the Auburn Gresham Gold Parent Engagement leaders, Jazmyn and Asya Smith for an afternoon to unwind with us at the first Family Movie Night Celebration. We looked for a movie that the entire family could enjoy. It was an evening that ended up being all  about the youth, because they were allowed to pick the movie, "Guardians of the Galaxy". The selection of course was made with Principal Dockery's final approval of age appropriateness and hopefully a family favorite! Everyone was treated with free popcorm and drinks, before they sat back to enjoy the movie. The team also timed an intermission so the students could line up to get refills. This event was one of the first of many movie events, sponsored, as part of our W.K. Kellogg Foundation two Generation strategy, to engage school, youth, parents and community throughought the year. See full story at Westcott Movie Night 2015


Calling all Auburn Gresham Schools! Plan your first outing, for the "Auburn Gresham Health Fair on the Block." This bi-annual event is a gem for the community and our schools. Come participate in exercise for youth, cooking demonstrations and participate in health related activities that impact and help improve our commmunities. September 25th from 10:00am to 2:00pm, on the street between Racine and May, sponsored by our CVS Caremark. DOWNLOAD AND PRINT THE FLYER HEALTH FAIR FLYER AND POST AT YOUR SCHOOL AND IN THE COMMUNITY!

Oglesby Montessori School Presentation Day and Parent Reception!

Calling all Westcott Parents!!!!

CVS/pharmacy Job Training Information Meetings  

Teachers, Moive SELMA Is Age 13 Appropriate

Opens Friday, January 9th 

Common Sense Media Moview Review:

Parents need to know that Selma follows the events leading up to 1965's momentous Selma-to-Montgomery civil rights march organized by Martin Luther King Jr.'s Southern Christian Leadership Conference to campaign for voters' rights. Narrowly focused on the time leading up to the march, Selma provides a historical context for how each of the group's campaigns concentrated on raising awareness about a different issue in the segregated South. Expect several intense, disturbing scenes of race-based violence perpetrated against the non-violent protesters, including protesters being beaten bloody with sticks, weapons, and even whips. Others are killed, including innocent girls in a church that's blown up. Despite the historically accurate violence and the occasional strong language (ranging from "f--k" and "s--t" to frequent racial slurs) -- as well as a subplot about infidelity -- this is a powerful, educational drama that parents should watch with their mature tweens and teens.

See full review at:

Quiz: Prepping for college in middle school

Which factor is most important in determining if middle school students will attend college?
• Attendance
• State test scores
• Study habits


Auburn Gresham Health and Wellness Center


CONNECT 2014-2015 Launches at Westcott and Madero

by Linnea Kennedy

Civic Opportunities to Network Needs for Educational and Community Transformation (CONNECT), is a mentorship program designed to promote positive youth development in public schools. CONNECT pairs Illinois State University (ISU) student mentors with middle school students, and together the pair forms a relationship through weekly Skype sessions, in-person school visits, and a mentee-designed community service project. This 9-month volunteer, service-learning program is open to all ISU teacher education majors who may wish to teach in urban, high need communities. The ISU CONNECT Initiative serves both Chicago Public Schools (CPS), and local schools in Normal, Illinois. 

See full story at Ilinois State University Chicago Teacher Pipeline Westcott Story



October 23, 2014



The W.K. Kellogg Foundation awards Greater Auburn-Gresham Development Corporation $1 milion grant to strengthen K-3rd literacy and family economic development in Chicago Auburn Gresham elementary school. #AuburnGreshamGOLD #education #AGGOLD

See press release below: 

Logo for VR 3


Media Contact: Carlos A. Nelson
Phone: (773) 483-3696
Programs target early literacy, health programs, jobs and parent engagement
A $1.9M grant from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation will support expansion of an education-enhancement program called Auburn Gresham GOLD focused on schools in Auburn Gresham –Englewood, CPS Network 11, lead by the Greater Auburn-Gresham Development Corporation (GAGDC).  With these resources from W.K. Kellogg Foundation, GAGDC and its partnership with the Strategic Learning Initiatives (SLI), will accelerate student and adult learning and community development.  When integrated with current initiatives to improve the quality of early literacy training, health and employment services and more effective parent engagement, this initiative will help transform the future of residents on Chicago’s south side.
The $1.9 million investment over three years will support programming at two schools in 2014, and additional schools in 2015 and 2016. The grant will leverage nearly a decade’s work by the GAGDC to build community networks and resources, including a school based health center at Perspectives Middle Academy and a network of Illinois State University student teachers who work in local schools. The Auburn Gresham GOLD program will also include local early childcare centers, starting with New Pisgah Day Care Center.
Major components of Auburn Gresham GOLD (AG GOLD) will include:
  • Early literacy training: Pre-kindergarten to 3rd grade teachers at Barton and Westcott will participate in the Children’s Literacy Initiative (CLI) professional development program.  CLI helped Barton achieve an 18 percentage point gain among third-grade students who met or exceeded the ISAT benchmark from 2010 to 2012.  
  • Health services: Primary students at the AG GOLD schools will be connected to health education and services to increase immunization compliance, student health and attendance rates. The Auburn Gresham Health and Wellness Center at Perspectives Middle Academy will serve students and families.  This Federally Qualified Health Center helped another local school, Oglesby, achieve nearly 100 percent immunization compliance.
  • Employment: GAGDC will link parents of AG GOLD school students to workforce development services through a key partnership with CVS Caremark to prepare participants for jobs at the drugstore chain and their distribution centers.  We will also use employment services of the Auburn Gresham Center for Working Families operated by the St. Sabina Employment Resource Center.
  • Parent engagement: AG GOLD schools will emphasize development of respectful and trusting relationships with parents so that they become full partners in academic and school improvements.  GAGDC’s work in 2013 with parents from Barton School was instrumental in removing that school from a “turnaround” list.
AG GOLD is premised on a “two-generation” strategy that simultaneously engages both students and parents. This model is compatible with the long-term work of GAGDC, which since 2003 has been a lead agency in LISC Chicago’s Neighborhood Network. That program has brought direct investment of $8.2 million to the community, including $3.4 million from The Atlantic Philanthropies for education and health programs. 
To complement AG GOLD, the GAGDC invited Strategic Learning Initiatives (SLI), a nonprofit, to help accelerate the rate of learning of their students and adults.  SLI is supported by a $900,000, three year grant from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation.
The W.K. Kellogg funding will be used for teacher professional development in literacy; program coordinators at each school; a health coordinator who will work with the schools and the University of Illinois Hospital-staffed Auburn Gresham Health and Wellness Center at Perspectives; out-of-school-time enrichment programming, including economic security trainings for parents; and data tracking and analysis.  Additionally, SLI’s unique, research-based, systemic model for rapid, low-cost school transformation will be deployed and will support each school’s leadership team.
Full implementation at Randolph and Westcott Schools started in September 2014. Expansion to additional schools will follow.  
Greater Auburn-Gresham Development Corporation (GAGDC) is a community development organization with a mission to foster and promote revitalization of the community by designing and implementing programs that improve the community’s economic viability, increase availability of quality housing and enhance delivery of education and social services. GAGDC works to position young people to be successful in school and create real opportunities for growth and development across multiple generations. For more information see:
The W.K. Kellogg Foundation (WKKF), founded in 1930 as an independent, private foundation by breakfast cereal pioneer Will Keith Kellogg, is among the largest philanthropic foundations in the United States. Guided by the belief that all children should have an equal opportunity to thrive, WKKF works with communities to create conditions for vulnerable children so they can realize their full potential in school, work and life. For more information see:
Strategic Learning Initiatives, established in 2000, vision is to support demonstration sites of school leaders and stakeholders in their desire to rapidly transform, scale and sustain their low cost results. For more information see:


CCLC 21st Century Community Learning Center LOI (Letter of Intent) to Apply

The Greater Auburn-Gresham Development Corporation (GADC) has written a Letter of Intent to Apply for FY 2015 21st Century Community Learning Center (21st CCLC) grant funds. The GADC will work together with Network 11 Office from the Chicago Public Schools. The GADC Director of Education Tenisha Jones will oversee implementation of the 21st century program and manage the relationships between the school (listed below) CBO, programmatic partners, and the Chicago Public schools. Please contact her with any questions in regards to 21st CCLC at 773-483-3696 or

Partnering schools

-        Clara Barton  Elementary – 7650 S. Wolcott Ave, Chicago, IL 60620
-        773-535-3260
-        Principal: August Smith

Calling all Auburn Gresham Schools! Plan your first outing, for the "Auburn Gresham Health Fair on the Block." This bi-annual event is a gem for the community and our schools. Come participate in exercise for youth, cooking demonstrations and participate in health related activities that impact and help improve our commmunities. September 25th from 10:00am to 2:00pm, on the street between Racine and May, sponsored by our CVS Caremark.


To foster and promote revitalization of the community by designing and implementing programs that improve the community’s economic viability; increase availability of quality housing to people of different income levels, while maintaining and improving existing affordable housing; and enhance delivery of social services, particularly to senior citizens.

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