NORWOOD PARK — An Oriole Park Elementary School teacher who has directly criticized Mayor Rahm Emanuel and Chicago Public Schools officials can add a new accomplishment to her resume.
Wozniak was one of five finalists across the country in the teacher category. The winner was picked by an online vote.
A native of East Grand Rapids, Mich., Wozniak attended "excellent" public schools, which was one of the reasons she felt compelled to teach, according to a commentary she penned for the Tribune.
When Wozniak began her CPS career in 2004 she quickly discovered that the city's public school system lacked resources.
A Chicago Teachers Union delegate, Wozniak has criticized the decision by the Emanuel-appointed Board of Education to privatize janitorial services at some schools as well as the mayor's decision to use $55 million from a Tax Increment Financing District to build a new basketball arena for DePaul University and hotel at McCormick Place.
Wozniak has said DePaul, her alma mater, should hand over naming rights money to CPS students.
In a profile on the union's website, Wozniak is described as "a strategic troublemaker" and quotes a colleague as saying, "She is absolutely unafraid to stand up for the rights of her students and for the future of public education."
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