DESTINY High School Students Learn Restaurant Job Skills
Liz Wegner’s students at Oak Forest High School spent
part of second semester learning about jobs in a
restaurant. They finished the unit by hosting other
DESTINY classroom staff and students at their own cowboy
themed classroom restaurant. Students practiced jobs
such as hosting, taking orders, preparing food,
delivering orders, and bussing tables.
DHH Students Learn to Make Bank!!
During the 2015-2016 school year, the deaf and hard of
hearing high school program based at Lemont High School
has been part of an outreach program offered thru First
Midwest Bank. Catherine Schneider who is a Bank Manager
for First Midwest has been out to the site to present
information to the students about basic banking skills.
Ms. Schneider came prepared with Backpacks from First
Midwest filled with presentation materials and practice
materials ( checks, deposit slips, withdrawal slips).
Each presentation included instruction, role play and
practice time with the concepts.
The DHH students
enjoyed the presentations since they were being
challenged to learn real life skills. First Midwest
offers nine different topic presentations. Each
presentation lasted for about an hour. Ms. Schneider was
able to fine tune her presentation to her audience and
worked closely with the educators
to assure that the materials were being presented in a
manner that the students can understand. The DHH program
would like to thank Ms. Schneider and First Midwest Bank
corporation for supporting
students in their local regions.
Transition staff celebrated International Day of
Acceptance in a very colorful way by wearing our 3E Love
Join the movement with us and learn more about it from
the excerpt below from 3E Love's website: What is
Acceptance? Acceptance is created from an Empowered movement
that Educates others to Embrace diversity
and Love Life by seeing beyond abilities.
Friends, tell the world you embrace who you are; a
person with social rights, who has an opinion, who has
interests, who has goals, who loves life, and who will
not be without a voice in society. You are not living
disabled, you are living. Supporters, join us in telling
the world that you are accepting of people with
disabilities – you also have a role in our culture and
life. You can have an impact on the future by wearing
your heart on your sleeve and proudly demonstrating
3E Love's website:
Transition College Students
Hard at Work
Transition is very proud of its students who attend the
Program and college courses. With a new semester brings
a new syllabus, coursework, professors, and, of course,
homework! In the photo below, college students Jaania
Ball and Jordan Fisher are studying new material and
completing their homework.
Jaania is taking online courses through Prairie State
and Jordan is attending classes on campus at South
Suburban College. Both are interested in an occupation
that allows them to explore their love for animals. We
are excited to see how far these young ladies will go
with the support of the Transition staff and peers.
Transition Holds Annual
On January 21st Transition staff and students held their
annual International Fest. Every pod was assigned a
continent and homerooms different countries. Pod 1
researched North and Central America, Pod 2 researched
Europe, Pod 3 researched Africa, and lastly, Pod 4
researched Asia. Once the homerooms got their
assignments they quickly began working very hard on
their research. They investigated everything from the
country's flag to it's climate, landmarks, traditions,
art, culture and much more!
(see more news...)
Please join us in celebrating
some of our staff members who have demonstrated one
extra degree of effort to achieve results:
Getting Fit for Autism: CD Moms Going the Extra Degree!
CD program parents, Tricia Butcher and Katie Larocca,
hosted "Get Fit for Autism." This event was held earlier
this month on November 7th at H-F Racquet & Fitness
The Communication Development program was excited to be
the beneficiaries of their annual fundraiser.
Participants made a donation to join yoga or cycling
classes. Our afternoon was filled with stretches,
spinning and sweating! Others cheered on and enjoyed the
fitness fun! We are grateful for the energy and efforts
of Tricia, Katie, their volunteers, and all
participants. This event raised nearly $3,000!
It takes a community to raise a community. Our program
is honored to be supported by so many. It is through
their care and generosity that we can provide greater
opportunites and resources for our learners. Thanks you,
Tricia and Katie!
Celebrating a Year of Achievement
On May 6th, the
Communication Development Program at Victor J. Andrew
High School held our annual Student Achievement Night.
This program recognizes our students accomplishments
over the course of the school year. Our students were
honored for their participation in various clubs,
sports, and general education classes. Our CD staff
members shared about our students’ success within their
academic class work, exhibiting strong character, and
leadership amongst their peers. Our graduates gave their
Senior Speeches to the crowd. They gave heartfelt
accounts of their growth within the Communication
Development Program and expressed their gratitude for
those that have helped them on their journey.
Mrs. Granato Wagner presented the
first annual Sharron Santefort Student Award. Mrs.
Santefort is a beloved CD teacher who demonstrated grit,
perseverance, and held herself and her students to high
expectations. Mrs. Santefort passed away earlier this
school year, but her influence and memory lives on. This
award is a tribute to her memory and recognizes students
who embody her spirit.
Mr. Janzon and Mr. Deacy gave a
music and movie presentation highlighting our students’
learning experience and encouraging our graduates to
“Change the World.” We expect they will! Congratulations
to the Class of 2015.
Thank you to our CD volunteers and
sponsors, Mrs. Kellermann and Mrs. GranatoWagner, for
hosting this special event for our students and their
A big DESTINY Plus 1 goes out to
Kelsey Broughton who was able to secure a very nice toy
shelf for her classroom with a little extra effort.
Broughton posted a request for such toy shelf on the
She had to submit a
justification outlining why her students would greatly
benefit from the shelf and how it would allow a more
accessible environment for her learners.
Ms. Broughtons proposal was
sponsored with just two weeks left in its publication.
Great job Ms. Broughton!
Kempke is DESTINY's +1
A big PLUS ONE goes out to
Karyn Kempke for accompanying the parent of one of her
8th grade students to visit potential high school
placements. Karyn's willingness to accompany the parent
has helped to reduce the stress and anxiety that comes
with a child transitioning from middle to high school
and into a completely new program.
Thank you, Karyn, for going above and beyond for our
students and their families!
Gerhardt and Wegner Inspire Future Educators
Oak Forest High School Project
Manager Mallory Platt announced today that the OFHS
Guidance Department sponsored a presentation about
teaching special education.
Featured speakers were Southwest Cook County Cooperative
DESTINY program special education teachers Brianna
Gerhard and Elizabeth Wegner, who teach in a special
wing at Oak Forest High School.
Gerhard and Wegner told students what a typical day
looks like in the special education program classroom.
Also, they discussed their likes and dislikes and
challenges they faced in their profession.