As kids lined up on the blacktop on Wednesday to start the school year at District 203’s Ranch View Elementary, a new face greeted them.
“I’m just excited to be a part of the Ranch View school community”
Erin Casey has taken over as the new principal at Ranch View Elementary after spending the last nine school years as principal at John Laidlaw Elementary School in Western Springs.
“I love the idea that Ranch View is a diverse community. Where I came from it was not, it didn’t have a lot of diversity in different ways and so this way I can experience something different and bring my skill set to this community, but also learn from the community as well,” said Ranch View Principal Erin Casey.
Familiar with the Area
Though it’s a new school for Casey – it’s not a new city, as she is a former Naperville resident.
“That was a big draw to come to Naperville, coming from the school districts that I’ve been is kind of coming back home. I went to school at Highland Elementary and then both Jefferson and Washington and so it’s a little bit of coming back home and being familiar with the community, familiar with the area and now I get to become more familiar with the Ranch View school community,” said Casey
Journey Through Different Schools
Casey began her journey as a first and second grade teacher in Oak Lawn before taking an assistant principal job at Crete Elementary School, eventually moving to Laidlaw Elementary. Now in her new building off of Ranchview Drive and Auburn Avenue, she hopes to build a strong community.
“I think really focusing especially all things COVID thinking about the social emotional needs of our kids and how important it is bringing that, but also the community feel. Coming from a small community then moving into the Ranch View community. It feels like a small community within a larger one so I’m excited to focus on that,” said Casey.
That work starts today with the launch of the new school year, with kids returning to Ranger Country, ready to get back to the books.
“I think really just the look on the kids’ faces as they walk up onto the black top they say their teachers standing there holding up their sign and they know that that’s the place they get to come to each and every day. And just their excitement for learning, to see their friends that they haven’t seen all summer to walk through those doors for the first time as the next grade so they were rising first graders or second graders,” said Casey.
Now it’s time for the Ranch View community to start walking into a new chapter together both as students and principal.
Naperville News 17 Patrick Codo reports.