Statement of Raul I. Raymundo, CEO of The Resurrection Project, on Orozco Community Academy
The Resurrection Project is committed to building relationships and healthy communities. That is why we are concerned about the allegations made over the last few weeks that tarnish the reputation of Orozco Community Academy, its personnel, students and families. While the concerns of a few parents at the center of these allegations need acknowledgement, they are not a reflection of the majority of the parents that make up the school community.
We also believe that it is important to highlight the great work that Principal Efrain Martinez, teachers, and his team are doing to improve the performance of students at Orozco. We at TRP have witnessed Principal Martinez and his team be collaborative and cooperative with parents at the school and with community residents. Under Martinez’s leadership, Orozco has experienced laudable achievements:
- Performance in reading and mathematics for students in grades 3 to 8 have improved. Last year, 79 percent of students were proficient or advanced in reading assessments. In math, by contrast, two thirds of the students met comparable standards.
- In an effort to foster an inclusive environment for all students, neighborhood students have been presented with opportunities to participate in advanced courses that in previous administrations were only available to students in the gifted program.
- The percentage of suspensions has declined by more than 40 percent with the inclusion of practices of restorative peace. For this accomplishment, Orozco was recognized by the Chicago school district as an example to follow.
- Enlarging the capacity in special education to meet the educational needs of all children.
- Dedicated parent spaces have been established in the school and parent involvement in various capacities has been welcomed. Parents volunteer in school and classroom activities that support improvement of student performance in math and reading, particularly in Kindergarten to grade 3.
- Workshops are hosted weekly on topics of leadership, immigrant rights, academic performance, health, preparation for college, financial wellness, and community development.
- Despite experiencing budget cuts in the range of $180,000 in academic year 2015-2016 and $120,000 in 2016-2017, Orozco offers a robust selection of after school programs such as mariachi group and folkloric ballet that promote appreciation of culture, and activities in athletics, arts, math, and science.
The Resurrection Project encourages administration at Orozco, parents, and community to work closely with each other to create the best learning environment for students and to prepare them for success in high school and in life.
Raul I. Raymundo
Chief Executive Officer
The Resurrection Project