Past Event

Roundtable Discussion on the Purpose of Public Education

Join us for the culminating Continuing Ed. program in Elgin – a roundtable with ten local elected officials, journalists, faith leaders, students, and community leaders that uses a short text by Robert Hutchins to ask:

What should we expect from public education and what can families do to help their schools achieve that promise?


  • Daylan Caldwell – Bartlett High School student
  • Tish Calhamer – Gail Borden Public Library Readers Services Librarian
  • Mike Demovsky – Bartlett High School Principal
  • Rev. Nathaniel Edmond – Second Baptist Church of Elgin Pastor
  • Julia McClendon – YWCA Elgin CEO
  • Karen Merchant – Bartlett High School parent
  • Tracy Occomy Crowder – Community Organizing and Family Issues (COFI) Senior Organizer
  • Tony Sanders – School District U-46 CEO & Interim Superintendent
  • Madeline Villalobos – Hispanic Parent Leadership Institute alum
  • David Sam  Elgin Community College

More on Continuing Ed.: Parents and the Future of Illinois Public Schools

Continuing Ed. is a yearlong, statewide series working with parents, schools, and communities across the state – in Chicago, Decatur, Elgin, and southern Illinois to move the conversation about public education back to parents. All roundtable discussions will be moderated by Joseph Coulson and Don Whitfield of The Great Books Foundation. For the complete schedule and more information, see

If you require a sign interpreter or any other arrangements to fully participate in this program, please contact at least 72 hours in advance of the event. For more information, please call (312) 422-5580.