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Illinois PTA selects Einstein principal for top statewide award

Genuine care and concern for students, excellent communication and strong partnerships with parents are among the outstanding qualities that led to Julie Tarasiuk’s selection as 2019 Outstanding Principal of the Year by the Illinois PTA.Tarasiuk has been principal at Einstein Elementary School in Hanover Park since 2016. The Einstein PTA nominated her for the statewide recognition.

“Julie explores the needs of different student’s learning abilities and embraces those challenges with open arms. She is patient and willing to give the staff, students and parents the tools they need to succeed,” Einstein PTA President Katie Kopecky wrote in her nomination. “She shows genuine care and love for students and I think that is so important to any child. Some simply need it more than others, and at the end of the day we all need to feel that way.”

Kopecky noted that Tarasiuk recently changed the school’s student of the month recognition to student of the week so that staff could recognize more students throughout the year. She also shared that Tarasiuk makes everyone feel seen and heard, keeps parents well-informed and encourages open communication at any time.

“I believe each child deserves the absolute best when they enter our doors at Einstein,” Tarasiuk said. “They deserve to come to school every day knowing that they will be loved and cared for. It is through a strong partnership with our community and families that we are able to provide an environment where the whole child is supported and successful. It takes a village.”

Kopecky said that this philosophy is obvious in Tarasiuk’s interactions with children.

“They all feel loved and respected within those walls every day at school,” she said.

Tarasiuk works closely with the PTA and will do whatever is needed to ensure the best possible opportunities for students. When the PTA was struggling to find enough volunteers for the holiday breakfast, Tarasiuk made and served pancakes that morning and recruited other Einstein staff to help.

“I walked in to find the breakfast set up that morning. The entire gym was filled with staff, all themed out and serving a full breakfast with jokes to all the students,” Kopecky wrote. “It was above and beyond, and she is appreciated more than she will ever know.”

Tarasiuk will be recognized during a ceremony at the Illinois PTA Convention May 4.