HYDE PARK — The Murray Language Academy Local School Council was able to breeze through its budget process at a meeting this week and spend a few minutes basking in the school’s recent accolades.
The magnet school at 5335 S. Kenwood Ave. will keep all of its teachers next year, but will not hire any new teachers, under the more than $375,000 budget passed Wednesday.
“I don’t think we have any money to move,” said Jo Sanders, chairwoman of the council’s finance committee, of the budget that maintains most of the school’s spending priorities.
After quickly passing the budget, the council was able to spend a few minutes basking in the school’s selection as a 2013 Spotlight School by the Illinois State Board of Education.
“It’s a really big to-do and an honor,” said Principal Greg Mason.
The state award acknowledges schools where at least half of the students are from low-income families and that have made significant improvements on state tests.
Murray was one of nine elementary schools in Chicago that earned the honor. Across the state, 37 schools received the honor, most of them in Downstate school districts.
“On behalf of the State Board of Education, I commend you and your staff for the hard work and effort that allows your students to achieve academically,” wrote Christopher Koch, the state superintendent of education, in a letter of congratulations to the school.
The meeting ended on a sad note, as well-liked Assistant Principal Youlanda Snowden announced she would retire on June 27.
“I will be doing everything I can to make it a smooth transition,” Snowden said.