August 2022

Greetings School District 163 Family,

Welcome to the 2022-23 school year!  We invite you to join us in partnership as we 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 will engage in innovative learning experiences in core academic programs, performing arts, STEAM programs, visual arts, and meaningful classroom activities.  This school year we will continue to provide differentiated instruction to meet the needs of every learner and ensure we work together toward academic benchmarks and enhance student growth through high-quality instructional programs.   

Our team of educators are also focused on supporting the mental health of our school community through social emotional learning program experiences along with additional counselors and social workers in our schools.   We are committed to a continued focus on restoring learning environments in safe and caring classrooms.   I am pleased to announce our 2022-23 excellence team of school leaders. 

  • 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 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 excellence in education and look forward to our 2022-23 school year! 

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.