Top of Page
Main

Appreciation and Recognition

Section 512.1 | Board Report 21-0623-PO1 | Date Adopted June 23, 2021

Policy PDF  English

THE CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER RECOMMENDS:

That the Board of Education (“Board”) rescind Board Report 88-0914-RS1 and adopt a New Appreciation and Recognition Policy. The policy was posted for public comment from April 21, 2021 to May 21, 2021.

PURPOSE:

The purpose of the Appreciation and Recognition policy is three fold. First, to establish a Teacher/Educator Appreciation Week and Employee Appreciation Week. Second, to provide criteria for recognition and appreciation. Third, to provide guidelines and supporting documents to assist Chicago Public School leaders and constituents in implementing this policy to recruit, develop, support, and retain high-quality educators, employees, and leaders.

BELIEF STATEMENT:

The legacy of honoring, recognizing, and appreciating our Employees is a huge cornerstone of the Chicago Public Schools District. The Board of Education and Chicago Public Schools (CPS) District celebrate educators and employees across our district who dedicate their time and talents to ensuring our schools, fellow educators, and our students excel in everything they do. The Board and Chicago Public School District recognize the relationship that exists between recognition and appreciation and satisfaction and retention.

Every day, our employees continue to persevere both inside and outside of the classroom. Likewise, Chicago Public School educators strive to instill in their students a lifelong love of learning and to encourage them to achieve their goals, while also recognizing that every student has unique strengths and needs. In addition to the focus on our educators, we recognize that there are other school-based and non-school based employees who contribute to the overall success of our district.

EQUITY STATEMENT:

Accordingly, this policy reflects the Board’s commitment to demonstrating appreciation to all of its employees that is equitable, sincere, meaningful, adaptable, relevant, and timely 1. This policy seeks to ensure that employees are recognized in a way that is appropriate and honors the transformative work that they do for all students across the Chicago Public Schools District.

We strongly encourage all members of our Chicago Public Schools and statewide to join in personally expressing appreciation to our educators and employees for their dedication and devotion to their work.

POLICY TEXT:

I. Definitions

  • Educator: A person who teaches, informs or inspires others and is connected to students in our schools.
  • Recognition: Acknowledgment of a person’s work.
  • Appreciation: Acknowledgment or demonstration of gratitude.
  • School-based leaders: Refers to staff and faculty members serving in an administrative leadership capacity at the school and network levels (i.e. Principal, Assistant Principal, Network Chiefs, Deans, etc.).
  • Charter School: An attendance center authorized pursuant to the Illinois Charter Schools Law. 105 ILCS 5/27A.
  • Educator Support Personnel: Non-teacher support staff [including but not limited to school clerks, custodians, engineers, food services, nurses, paraprofessionals, special education classroom assistants/teacher assistants, security, transportation, skilled trades, technical services].
  • Employee: Any Person working for the Board as an officer, teacher, principal, assistant principal, certified administrator, educational support personnel, or miscellaneous employee, regardless of classification and regardless of whether employed on a full-time or part-time basis.
  • Gift(s): Anything of value given without payment or other consideration.

II. Teacher/Educator Appreciation and Recognition

Chicago Public Schools recognizes the first week of May as Teacher/Educator Appreciation Week.

  • Chicago Public Schools will appreciate all teachers on the first Tuesday of the first week in May in accordance with National Teacher Appreciation Day.
  • In celebrating Teacher Appreciation Week school-based leaders are encouraged to do the following:
    1. lead the creation of a Teacher/Educator Appreciation Week Action Plan through a specifically designated committee or pre-existing school leadership team that provides specific activities to show gratitude to all educators in an equitable manner.
    2. work in collaboration with a wide range of stakeholders, including community partners, parents, students, and school-based leaders.
    3. utilize the School Leader Toolkit or other resources provided by the district to guide planning and preparation.
  • Other school based and non-school based staff may utilize resources and/or Toolkits provided by the Office of Communications to guide planning, preparation, and recognition of educators at the school and community level.

III. Employee Appreciation and Recognition

Chicago Public Schools recognizes the first Friday in March as Employee Appreciation Day and the first week in March as Employee Appreciation Week.

  • Chicago Public Schools will appreciate all Employees the first Friday in March in accordance with the National Employee Appreciation Day.
  • In celebrating Employee Appreciation Week, Chicago Public Schools District are encouraged to do the following:
    1. lead the creation of an Employee Appreciation Week Plan through a specifically designated committee or pre-existing district based and school based leadership team that shows gratitude to all employees in an equitable manner.
    2. work in collaboration with a wide range of stakeholders, including community partners, parents, students, and school-based leaders.
    3. utilize the resources provided by the district through the Office of Communications to guide planning and preparation.
  • Other school based and non-school based staff may utilize resources and/or Toolkits provided by the district to guide planning, preparation, and recognition of employees at the school and community level.

IV. Other Appreciation and Recognition

Each Department, School, or team may celebrate a recognition or appreciation of its stakeholders. Examples of some nationally established holidays include:

  • National Counselor Appreciation Week: 1st Week of February
  • National Employee Recognition: 1st Friday in March
  • National Social Work Month: March
  • National Assistant Principal Week: 1st week in April
  • National Administrative Professional Day- Wednesday of the last full week in April
  • National Teacher Appreciation Week: 1st Week in May
  • National Nurses Appreciation Week: 2nd Week in May
  • National Custodian Day: October 2
  • National Principal Appreciation Week: 3rd week in October
  • National Education Support Professionals (CPS Educational Support Personnel) Day: 3rd Wednesday in November
  • School Board Members Day (Local School Council): November 15
  • Nutrition Staff: Year-Round Appreciation

V. Criteria for Appreciation

The Board of Education recognizes that appreciation should be sincere, specific, meaningful, adaptable, relevant and timely. The methods of appreciation may fall within the national 1 recognized appreciation or recognition holidays or periodically throughout the year.

  • Sincere and Specific. It should reflect a genuine expression of appreciation and recognition of the educator and/or employee sharing a specific thing that the educator or employee does well.
  • Meaningful. It should be aligned with the values, goals, and priorities that matter the most (to the organization, culture/climate, etc.)
  • Adaptable. The diverse workplace demands alternative ways to appreciate and recognize as no single format works for everyone all the time. Recognition should be adapted and valuable to the receiver.
  • Relevant. Recognition should be provided by someone of significance to the receiver.
  • Timely. It is important that rewards respond to the behavior they are intending to reinforce during the recommended appreciation and/or recognition.

VI. Criteria for Recognition

As part of Teacher/Educator Appreciation Week and Employee Appreciation Week, school and District Leaders are encouraged to recognize employees in the following recognition criteria areas mentioned below:

  • Career Milestone, Retirement, or Achievement: Educators and Employees who reach a career milestone, accomplishment, or achievement.
  • Equity-based Leadership: Educators and Employees who champion the individual cultures, identities, talents, abilities, languages, and interests of each student and employee by ensuring they receive the necessary opportunities and resources to meet their unique needs and aspirations.
    1. Cultural Responsiveness: A pedagogy that empowers students and staff intellectually, socially, emotionally, and politically by using cultural references to impart knowledge, skills, and attitudes.
    2. Anti-racism: The work of actively opposing racism by advocating for changes in political, economic, and social life.
    3. Anti-bias: The act of unpacking and making sense of individual histories, identities, attitudes, or stereotypes that affect our understanding, actions, and decisions while explicitly working to end all forms of bias and discrimination.
    4. Diversity: Actively supports diversity initiatives within the district to ensure representativeness and most impacted stakeholders.
  • Inclusive Partnerships: Educators and Employees who value and prioritize the diverse voices of students, families, caregivers, and communities when making decisions that affect their lived experiences.
  • Leadership Competencies: Educators and Employees who demonstrate the following leadership competencies should be recognized:
    1. Influences Others: Articulates a clear vision, tied to student success, communicates compellingly and motivates others, makes and communicates difficult decisions while building momentum, and provides thoughtful and actionable feedback;
    2. Strategizes & drives for results to maximize impact: Acts with integrity in the long-term best interests of CPS students, demonstrates courage in making difficult decisions, delegates productively, growing capacity and providing earned autonomy, and incorporates learnings from previous projects into future work;
    3. Adapts and Shows Resilience to create solutions: Rebounds from individual and team setbacks by adjusting plans, demonstrates self-awareness, persistence, and integrity in the face of adversity, pursues equitable outcomes for all students relentlessly, and embraces ambiguity and thinks creatively; and
    4. Fosters Trusting Relationships to enable productive change: Expresses understanding and empathy, cultivates an environment of productive conflict, proactively resolving disputes, demonstrates cultural competence, working positively and effectively with a diverse range of stakeholder groups, and listens intently, incorporates feedback and effectively communicates.
  • School and District leaders may also recognize employees in areas that are unique to their work or school environment.

VII. Acceptable Gifts, Appreciation, & Recognition

  • All guidelines and Toolkits issued under this policy must comply with the CPS Code of Ethics.
  • All gifts, appreciation, and recognition must comply with the CPS Code of Ethics.
  • The guidelines issued under this policy must include suggestions for acceptable gifts, appreciation, and recognition. Section XII of the CPS Code of Ethics also provides the limits and requirements for gifts, recognition, and appreciation.

VIII. Publication of Employee/Educator Appreciation and Recognition

  • Employees that are recognized using the Appreciation and Recognition criteria, along with appreciation guidelines and survey data will be published annually on the www.cps.edu website.
  • Employees will be informed of their recognition by the CEO or designee.
  • The guidelines/toolkits for Appreciation and Recognition will be updated annually by the CEO or designee, Ethics Advisor, and Communications Team.

Policy References

Amends/Rescinds Rescinds 88-0914-RS1
Cross References  
Legal References  
Public Comment Pursuant to Board Rule 2-6 this Policy was subject to Public Comment from 4/21/21 to 5/21/21.

  1. These criteria were developed and explained in “What Makes a Good Reward?” by Jim Brintnall, Debbie Gustafson, Bob Nelson, Recognition News, Vol. 2, Issue 2.

Policy and Procedures

1 N. Dearborn, 9th Floor
Chicago, IL 60602