January 2023

Greetings School District 163 Family,

Thank you for your partnership throughout the 2022-23 school year!  Our dedicated Board of Education, administrative team, teachers, and staff  appreciate your continued support as we work together to elevate excellence for all students within the Park Forest-Chicago Heights community. The goals established by the Board of Education focus our work on: 

  • Equity for all learners 

  • Positive school culture which empowers the whole child through enhanced communication in a caring community 

  • Implementation and monitoring of academic improvement plans

  • Development and retention of teachers and leaders

  • Improving student attendance

  • Effective fiscal management

  • Ongoing capital development and life/safety initiatives

Our students are engaged in innovative learning experiences in core academic programs, performing arts, STEM and STEAM programs, visual arts, and meaningful real-world classroom activities.  This school year we are committed to providing differentiated culturally responsive instructional environments which meet the needs of every learner, ensure we work together toward meeting Illinois academic benchmarks, and enhancing student growth in English Language Arts and Mathematics through high-quality teaching and instructional programs.   

Our team of educators are also focused on supporting the mental health of our school community through trauma informed and social emotional learning program experiences along with additional counselors, student mentors, and social workers in each of our schools.   We are committed to a continued focus on restoring learning environments in safe, supportive, and caring classrooms.   I am pleased to lead our principal excellence team. 

  • Algonquin Prekindergarten Center, Mrs. Chrishawn Chinn

  • 21st Century Primary Center, Ms. Angela Starks

  • Blackhawk Primary Center, Dr. Felix Anderson

  • Mohawk Primary Center, Mrs. Lori Colbert

  • Barack Obama School of Leadership and STEM 4th and 5th Grade Center, Mrs. Veneeta Phelps

  • Michelle Obama School of Technology and the Arts 6th - 8th Grade Middle School, Dr. Taiyuan Banks-Principal, Dr. Muriel Hollimon-Assistant Principal, and  Mr. TJ Lee-Assistant Principal 

The District 163 team continues to demonstrate an unwavering commitment to prioritizing health and safety in our facilities following the local health department guidance and by implementing safe school plans. Students, staff and visitors are required to display proper identification to enhance school safety and may choose to wear masks to mitigate personal health. At home isolation continues to be required for any positive COVID staff or students along with five days of masking upon return to school.  If you have any questions regarding our health and safety mitigations, please contact us at

We are thankful to our dedicated Board of Education that works together to lead our school community with vision and purpose. We continue to prioritize elevating excellence in education and look forward to daily opportunities to educate our students and connect with our families in the Park Forest-Chicago Heights community where we believe that everyone is a VIP - Valued, Important and loved and has great Potential! 

Be excellent,

Dr. Caletha White

“Intelligence plus character, that is the true goal of education.” Dr. Martin L. King, Jr. 

Mission Statement

Park Forest Chicago Heights School District 163 is committed to meeting the needs of our diverse student body and to promoting high educational standards by differentiating instruction, nurturing active, strategic and higher level thinking skills and inspiring a love of lifelong learning.