AGC Students Just Want to Rock & Roll all Night (and Study Every Day)

16 Sep

AGC’s After-School program is looking for a guitar teacher to help our students express themselves through the art of song. We are looking for a guitar teacher to introduce our beginner students to the instrument and help them to play their first songs.

The details:

-Weekly hourlong guitar lessons on Tuesdays
-Hours: 3:45-5:00pm (lessons begin at 4pm 1 hour of instruction)
-Students: grades 3rd-7th
-All classes held at 4941 W. 46th St.
-Class size: 10 or less
-AGC to provide guitars, instructor to provide all other lesson materials.
-Please contact to apply
Agc students with guitars

AGC to Host Chicago Ideas Week Lab

16 Sep

This fall, AGC welcomes Chicago Ideas Week participants to go back to Kindergarten as an AGC student for a day. We will condense our long school day (AGC students enjoy 17% more instructional time than the majority of their peers) into just two hours, jam packed with student-centered, and hands-on holistic learning opportunities. Guests of our CIW lab will also have the opportunity to tour our K-2 campus and meet our schoolyard chickens, Daisy and Puddles.

We invite you to join our CIW Lab from 1:00 – 3:00 pm on October 15th. Click here to register online today, tickets are extremely limited. 

Tickets are $15 for non-Chicago Ideas Week Members and will support the amazing efforts of Chicago Ideas Week, including CIW talks, labs, Artist in Residence programs, and youth, and young adult community initiatives.

The Academy for Global Citizenship Goes Back to Kindergarten

Go back to Kindergarten for a day of yoga, composting and fun in the garden at the most innovative Chicago public charter school. A laboratory of educational innovation, the Academy for Global Citizenship is a holistic learning environment that includes a rigorous International Baccalaureate Program, dual-language classrooms and globally relevant topics alongside the types of educational initiatives you likely don’t remember from your Kindergarten days—gardening, school-wide composting and chicken coops. 

AGC Seeks Special Educators

9 Sep

AGC’s holistic, student centered learning environment supports a diversity of learning styles. As such, we are proud to serve a special needs population that exceeds district averages. In the past 7 years, roughly 20% of our students have received special education services. Like their peers, these students are participating in the academically rigorous International Baccalaureate Programme, learning a second or third language, presenting independent research on globally relevant topics, and excelling in an academic environment that encourages their growth as a leader in their community. Thanks in great part to the work of our special education team,  our special education students achieve tremendous academic growth, often at a higher rate than their peers. 

Please share the job description below with special education professionals far and wide.

Special Education Teacher

Teachers are responsible for helping all of our children learn, classroom management, participating in professional development, providing feedback to others, taking ownership in the development and improvements of Individual Educational Plan (IEP), consulting general education teachers on special needs, and communicating to staff and parents regarding student performance. Teachers must be committed to promoting in students the student profile qualities as described by the International Baccalaureate Primary Years Program (PYP): inquirers, thinkers, communicators, risk takers, knowledgeable, principled, caring, open-minded, well-balanced, and reflective.  Special Ed teachers report to the Principal.

Key Responsibilities:

  • Teaching: provides students with special needs with various modes of learning to accommodate their different learning styles, by using inquiry, real-life experiences, current events, information technology, the dramatic arts and other lively sources of knowledge.
  • Instructional Strategies: responsible for using many different types of instructional strategies including teaching through inquiry, differentiating instruction (different learning styles and language backgrounds) and data-driven instruction.
  • Technology Integration: incorporates technology across all disciplines as much as possible, where appropriate.
  • Professional Development: participates in coaching cycle, stays abreast of latest techniques and demonstrates an eagerness to learn new skills and share experiences with others.
  • Curriculum Development: works closely with coach, other teachers to ensure taught curriculum is aligned with Common Core Learning Standards, the IB PYP/MYP, and is achieving the goals of the school.
  • IEP’s: designs and writes the IEP or 504 plans of students in his/her caseload based on evidence-based data and in regards to Spec. Ed law.
  • Performance Assessment: sets high and measurable goals for student achievement and evaluates student progress in the instructional program.
  • Community: encourages the use of community resources, cooperates with families in welcoming them to our community, and maintains solid communication with all community members.


The Academy for Global Citizenship…

  • Believes great teaching can transform the world
  • I convinced all students can learn
  • Strives every single day to make our school a remarkable place
  • Is not afraid to take risks to do what is best for students
  • Takes our name and mission seriously
  • Doesn’t settle for good but strives for great


We are looking for staff who…

  • Have a big heart to match a big brain
  • Are bilingual in English/Spanish (preferred, not required)
  • Want your work to define best practice
  • Respect and thrive in a dynamic, changing, and growing environment
  • Know extraordinary things can happen when people work hard
  • Are approximately 10 degrees off center


Working at AGC means…

  • Being surrounded by extraordinary, inquisitive students and hard-working, like-minded colleagues
  • Thriving in a dynamic, changing, and growing environment
  • Being held to high standards for continuous personal and school improvement
  • Having high academic expectations for every student in the school everyday
  • Trying things again and again and again until we get it right
  • Getting your hands dirty in our school garden
  • Supporting Teaching through interdisciplinary International Baccalaureate Units of Inquiry, balanced literacy, arts integration, and TERC Investigations Math
  • Working in an environmentally friendly setting
  • Working hard and thinking outside of the box to do what is best for our students


Required Skills and Experience:

  • 5+ years experience as an educator (ideal)
  • Bilingual and biliterate (English/Spanish) (ideal)
  • Familiarity with IB program (ideal)
  • Familiarity with various educational models: Inquiry-based teaching and Responsive Classroom
  • Believer in culturally relevant teaching
  • Strong leadership skills and personal drive
  • Ability to maintain a safe, orderly environment
  • Strong communication skills
  • Proven ability to play a lead role in their grade level
  • Experience accommodating students with IEPs within the classroom


Education Requirements:

  • Bachelor Degree in Special Education
  • Master’s Degree in Special education(ideal)
  • State of Illinois Teaching Certificate (Type 03 and 10)
  • Endorsement or extensive experience in ELL instruction (ideal)


Students Self-Calm With Rock Gardens, Yoga and Mindfulness Traning

27 Aug

“This made me feel so calm,” reports an AGC 1st grader while drawing paths through a bowl of salt and glitter, “now when someone tells me to calm down, I know what to do.”


AGC’s K-2 Wellness classes found inner peace this week while making Japanese rock gardens. “Some children did it for 15 minutes without a sound,” says Ms. Jayaram, “they felt so calm and peaceful.” Through this and other activities in Ms. Jayaram’s Wellness class, which, for their current Unit of Inquiry is focusing on strategies for “inner peace,” help students at AGC develop crucial self-control skills.


Mindfullness board

Often, children are asked to adjust behavior, but lack the skills or knowledge to do so. “My parents are always telling me to be calm, and I didn’t know what to do. Now I know what to do,” explains a student in Ms. Jayaram’s class. Other strategies explored during this unit have included yoga, mindful breathing, and guided mindfulness meditation. After each activity, students are asked to reflect on its helpfulness. Their responses have been overwhelmingly positive. 


Research shows that students who are taught to manage their own energy and stress levels achieve higher GPAs, work habits, and cooperation behaviors. Relaxation programs can also increase emotional balance and reduce feelings of helplessness and aggression. At AGC, we have found these curriculum, nutrition education, social-emotional curriculum and support, and the Responsive Classroom approach to be instrumental in creating a peaceful, vibrant and positive school environment. This approach allows us to fulfill our mission to foster mindful leaders who take action now and in the future to positively impact their communities and the world beyond.

For young students, Ms. Jayaram recommends”Sitting Still Like a Frog” for Guided Mindfulness Meditation and the “MindUp” mindfulness curriculum. 

AGC 7th Grader Featured In Behind the Docs Interview Series

25 Aug

“I believe we’re all going to have an open mind and we’re going to have different views of the world and how to help it.” – Tavaris West, AGC student

 Today, Microsoft Office published an interview with AGC 7th grader Tavaris West, about how Powerpoint helps him organize his independent research and share knowledge with his peers. “It felt good to teach other kids something I enjoyed and it seemed like they enjoyed it too,” Tavaris said of his presentation. Read Tavaris’s full interview here. This interview was in conjunction with Microsoft Office’s #behindthedocs series, a celebration of Microsoft Office’s 25th anniversary.

We are so proud of Tavaris for his poised and thoughtful interview, in which he brilliantly reflects the spirit of the Academy for Global Citizenship and The International Baccalaureate Programme. Tavaris is “such an amazing mentor to the younger kids,” says Angela, whose son is in 4th grade, “and an excellent representative of our school. [We] watch Tavaris at breakfast high-fiving the table of 4th grade boys, as many as he could get to! He’s a natural leader and the kids truly look up to him!” 

At the Academy for Global Citizenship, we work to create a learning environment that fosters mindful leaders who seek knowledge and understanding as a path to positive change. In service of this mission, the community of AGC parents, teachers and staff encourage students to embody the International Baccalaureate Learner Profile. The IB learner profile helps create a common language shared by students in 140 countries around the world as they strive to create a better and more peaceful world. 

From the time they set foot in our halls as Kindergarteners, our students learn to be: inquirers (to be curious and independent researchers), knowledgeable, thinkers, communicators, principled (to act with integrity, justice and honesty) open minded, caring, risk-takers (to approach uncertainty with forethought and determination, to be resilient in the face of challenge and change,) balanced, and reflective. 

Tavaris and his peers have been using these terms to shape and describe their experience at AGC. These words empower students to hold themselves and their fellow students accountable for their role in our peaceful community. It is common to hear young students in the lunch room encouraging a younger sibling or peer to try an unfamiliar food item with the phrase “Be a risk-taker!” or to applaud a peer for being “knowledgeable” about a toy or game. 

Students at our bilingual school learn these terms in both Spanish and English and, in early grades, get help from associated hand gestures and songs, like this adorable example from our Dual Language 1st grade class, set to the tune of Gagnam Style. 

“Open minded kids don’t laugh at others / open minded kids are cool at all hours/ open minded kids try new things/ open minded kids are the thing.”

“Open minded, I recommended it for a better world… open minded, let’s make a better world.”


“Ms. Jayaram, I want to be a Wellness teacher.”

20 Aug

During wellness, this week, K-2 wellness teacher Arathi Jayaram and her students were feeding AGC’s schoolyard chickens some meal worms. Saul, an AGC 1st grader, said, “I am just going to watch so I can learn, because I want to work here [at AGC] one day.”

Ms. Jayaram asked “What do you want to do at AGC, for your job?” and Saul replied “I want to be a teacher.” “What do you want to teach, Kindergarten, 1st Grade….” “Ms. Jayaram,” he said “I want to be a Wellness teacher.” Ms. Jayaram then shared with Saul some ways that he could serve as an apprentice and learn the trade.

Wellness is a daily class at AGC, a unique combination of Physical Education, Social and Emotional Education, Nutrition Education and Environmental Education, often centering around work in our schoolyard garden. Students enjoy wellness classes  We hope that by the time Saul is ready to lead his own Wellness class, Wellness programs will be common in schools around the country. 

To learn more about AGC’s wellness and sustainability program, visit our sustainability pages online. Consider supporting AGC’s wellness initiatives with a one-time or monthly donation. Click here to learn about the many ways to support wellness and other unique programs at AGC.

Saul and Ms. Jayaram in the garden.

Saul and Ms. Jayaram in the garden.



AGC Seeks Stellar Business and Sustainability Manager

19 Aug

AGC is looking for a passionate environmentalists with a strong background in business administration for a full time, on-site Business and Sustainability Manager. 

We are calling on all our friends and advocates to share this job posting far and wide to help AGC recruit the best person for this role. Please share this post with any and all with a passion for environmental and financial sustainability, green business, and public education.  


Business & Sustainability Manager 

The Academy for Global Citizenship (AGC) is a non-profit Chicago public charter school, located on the underserved Southwest side of Chicago. Our innovative and holistic approach to education aims to foster systemic change and inspire the way society educates our future generations. We are producing a replicable model for learning in the 21st century, including the construction of a net-positive energy campus.


The Business & Sustainability Manager is tasked with managing the day-to-day financial and operational needs of a public elementary school. To ensure AGC’s unique mission is reflected in our daily operations, the Business & Sustainability Manager works with the administrative and operations staff to source and manage resources sustainably. The ideal candidate is a passionate environmentalist who is highly proficient in QuickBooks and Microsoft Excel. While this position is collaborative across the AGC community, the Business & Sustainability Manager reports to the Principal.

Monitoring School Sustainability:

  • Maintain and continuously improve AGC’s Environmental Sustainability Policy (ESP) and initiatives with the aim of becoming a national model for environmentally sustainable school operations.
  • Ensure sustainable practices are researched, developed, implemented and evaluated in compliance with the school’s ESP, particularly pertaining to operations.
  • Oversee sustainable food sourcing, working with AGC’s kitchen staff, organic meal provider and school leaders to strategically evaluate costs, enhance sustainable sourcing and lower food miles.
  • Work with AGC’s School Garden Coordinator and Organic Chef to integrate schoolyard garden produce.
  • Serve as an ambassador for sharing AGC’s best practices in sustainability by presenting at conferences, hosting tours and attending related networking events.
  • Lead future net-positive energy campus developments as they pertain to sustainability; participate in key architect and design meetings.

Business Administration:

  • Administer effective accounting and budgeting efforts, including payroll, insurance and benefits.
  • Prepare annual budget in collaboration with the Administrative Team. Ensure timely internal and Board review of the financial condition and performance relative to financial objectives.
  • Monitor budgets to ensure that all expenditure of funds meet all state, federal, local, and grant guidelines. Provide accounting and reporting for all gifts, grants and donations.
  • Manage procurement and inventory of school supplies and process expense reimbursements.
  • Manage data for school testing, demographics, and enrollment.
  • Maintain QuickBooks data entry.
  • Manage banking business and technology related vendor relationships, flows of funds, procurement, etc., and ensure an effective system of internal control is present by enforce financial and accounting policies.
  • Oversee the annual audit and ensure compliance with all reporting entities, including Chicago Public Schools, and an array of foundation and government funding sources.
  • Serve as a liaison with AGC’s E-rate consultant on the funding application processes and reporting


  • A fervent commitment to environmental sustainability and related experience
  • Entrepreneurial thinker with a desire to support the vision and mission of AGC
  • Meticulous attention to detail and strong problem-solving capabilities
  • Proven ability to communicate clearly and perform at a high level under pressure


  • Competitive salary and benefits commensurate with experience; growth opportunities available.


  • Please submit your cover letter and resume to, addressing the following: Write about your most profound learning experience and how it’s impacted your life.

inspecting the garden in sunlight


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