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The Lake View High School update shares LVHS successes and pride with the community. We hope you'll enjoy and share this update with others in the community. 
Lake View High School law instructor Toney Vast-Binder and students Pier, Jazzmine and Jasmina accept the citywide award at Sidley & Austin.

LVHS goes for citywide mock trial threepeat

Lake View High School legal team wins again in Sidley & Austin competition

“Three-peat” in Chicago is usually associated with Michael Jordan’s Bulls, but Lake View has its own three-peat candidate in LVHS’s law student mock trial team.
The team has been a winner in the citywide competition the last two years, beating out more than two dozen schools in both team and individual competitions.
“There are three rounds of competition, where up to thirty schools face off against each other” says Toney Vast-Binder, who has been teaching law at LVHS for a decade. “It’s a tough competition, and students really have to know their law and think on their feet. That’s where our kids perform best.”
The competition is held in a circuit court courtroom, and presided over by a county judge. In addition to their classroom preparation, students worked with a Sidley and Austin mentor in the classroom, rehearsing during the schooldays and on weekends.
“The best part has been collaborating with the team of  five attorneys and five witnesses - we built families in those” says LVHS graduate Jazzmine, who is attending Missouri as a pre-law student in 2014, and intends to get her graduate degree in law as well.
Planning for a three-peat is an academic and pschychological exercise, says Vast-Binder, who seems to channel Phil Jackson for his prep. “Practice is key, but pride and a sense of accountability are critical as well" says Vast-Binder. "Each year, the team touches the trophy from the year before, and our graduates write letters to the new team members telling them to bring home the gold. You can feel the tradition in this team.”

LVHS Graduate Juggles AP/Honors Courses, Athletics and Multiple University Offers

The myriad responsibilities of a pre-med college career at University of Michigan won’t be a shock to 2013 LVHS graduate Adrian, who seemed to live by the saying "carpe high school."
In addition to testing into honors and AP classes in arts and sciences, Adrian played volleyball and softball for LVHS, and ran track as well.
“Despite her coursework at LVHS, Adrian always felt that the pressure level was appropriate, not overwhelming,” says Chris, Adrian’s mother, who feels that LVHS played a big role in Adrian’s pre-med offers from Michigan, Temple, Iowa and other universities. “She’s always been a diligent student, and was big fan of the honors arts classes, as well as her ‘cool nerd’ classes.”
“Sports is a motivation to me, not a chore,” says Adrian. “Mixing sports with my classes trained me in time management, and I know this will really help me in college.”
Adrian credits the community feel of LVHS for some of her successes. “I liked that I had friends from Blaine at Lake View. And at a smaller school, I felt like it was not only easier to get help if I needed it, but I was also easier to spot for the colleges I applied to.”
When asked who she credits with putting her on her current path, she pauses. “I owe a lot to Ms. Cervinka, my senior honors English teacher - without her I wouldn’t be the writer I am. And she really helped with my college essays and personal statements.” But, after one more pause, she adds, “I feel bad singling any teacher out. I know it sounds like I’m being polite, but all of my teachers at Lake View were great.”

New Lake View High School Principal: "Now is the Time for LVHS"

Principal Scott Grens was unanimously appointed as principal on July 1st, 2014, and is already deeply engaged in a strategic effort to accelerate the school’s programming and successes. 

"I regularly meet parents and prospective students who have misinformation about LVHS.  It tells me that as school leader, I need to communicate directly with the community to ensure honesty and awareness of all that is great at Lake View,” says Grens.  

He has pledged an "open door" policy to community, students and staff alike, and the change is already making a difference.
“In his short time at LVHS, Mr. Grens has energized the faculty, engaged community volunteers, and visited many of the local feeder schools.  I could not be more excited for LVHS’ future,” said Arnold Davis, LVHS LSC member and past chair of the Nettelhorst LSC.
As a former teacher at Neuqua Valley and Lake View High School, graduate of the prestigious New Leaders program, and Assistant Principal at George Westinghouse College Prep (a CPS Selective Enrollment High School), Grens has a deep understanding of how actions and proof speak louder than words when it comes to transformational school leadership.
Grens feels strongly about his role as a leader in the building. "Part of my job is to not only empower teachers, but to motivate them to do the great things they're capable of every day in the classroom” says Grens. “I’m responsible for their results, too. Culture and progress starts with me, for both the staff and the students.”
Grens acknowledges that his work of motivating others must also take place in the community. "I'm challenging parents, prospective students and community members to visit LVHS this year, and see our staff and students in action,” says Grens, who is planning on visiting area schools regularly this year, and holding several events at LVHS focused on community engagement.  "My promise to the community is that if you don't find me, I'll find you. I am dedicated to revealing and elevating the school that has been hidden in plain sight from our community for far too long."

LVHS Students, Teachers feeling at Home with Northwestern University

LVHS and Northwestern share more than the team moniker “Wildcats”. Over the past few years, the two schools have become more deeply integrated in science instruction -- collaborating on professional development for teachers, experiential STEM instruction, and even placing instructors in LVHS classrooms to teach science hands-on.
“Northwestern University has a strong partnership with Lake View that includes exciting student programs both in and out of school” says, Kemi Jona, Director of STEM Partnerships at NU. "One such extracurricular program is this summer’s FUSE camps, offering students opportunities to solve problems hands-on across robotics, 3D printing and electronics."
Whether in-school or extracurricular, “the overarching spirit of the growing partnership centers on problem-solving and self-motivation in STEM studies” says Jennifer Sutton, Early College STEM Program Manager at LVHS. “The idea is to allow students to select problems that are relevant to the community and to students’ lives, and give them a methodology and tools to solve those problems.”
“NU has been a leader in reinventing how STEM is taught, and we’re thrilled to be a partner in that reinvention” says John Talley of LVHS. “Our facility provides the perfect environment - seven science labs overhauled in the past two years, new computer labs, 3D printers, and so on – but it’s the spirit of our staff that is driving this forward.”
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