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Burnham/Anthony Mathematics and Science Academy

In the last few years, Burnham/Anthony Mathematics and Science Academy has boosted the achievement of its students, who come mostly from low-income families. Linda Moore, Burnham’s principal since 2004, is largely credited with pulling the school off academic probation and leading its surge from the bottom. Before her tenure, many students were receiving A’s and B’s, yet the school failed to perform proficiently on state assessments. By 2008, approximately 90 percent of the staff had been personally selected by Moore. She has raised expectations and increased the threshold for receiving an A from a grade of 90 to 95. Burnham students receive Balanced Literacy Instruction and participate in the Chicago Math and Science Initiative. The school tests its students three times annually to assess their progress and offers struggling students a slew of resources to help them improve, including small-group instruction with extremely small groups.1

Burnham has implemented several programs, including a Social and Emotional Learning program, to help address students’ nonacademic needs. School officials and faculty enjoy a shared leadership style and work together to engage the local school council, parents and community members. The school is affiliated with the Community Schools Program, which offers an array of before- and after-school programs, and extracurricular activities including dance, a chess club, a book club and Girl Scouts. By raising academic standards and meeting students’ nonacademic needs, this school once on probation now deserves commendation.

¹Rosalind Rossi, “Burnham Academy Raises the Grade,” Chicago Sun-Times, Nov. 2, 2008.



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