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I, Darrell Thomas Jr, am the Culture and Climate Specialist (Dean) of Waukegan Community Unit School District #60. My duties entail but are not limited to ensuring that students have a safe and productive environment where learning can happen. I work with a team who has the responsibility of ensuring the student culture consistently improves and is healthy. This can only occur with a positive culture and climate throughout the entire school.
I have served in Waukegan Public School District #60 and this is the beginning of my second year. Prior to my arrival, I served as a Juvenile Correctional Officer and Transitional Living Counselor for a residential facility for youth on parole. In addition to my primary responsibilities, I serve as an assistant football and wrestling coach, and a club coordinator.
I was born and reared in Chicago, IL. There I resided with my mother, two adopted siblings, four adopted cousins, and two aunts that my mother cared for because there were no others to step up. Nevertheless, I had the distinct privilege of attending Urban Prep Academy for Young Men – West Campus during my high school years. Subsequently, I earned multiple athletic scholarships. The decision was made during my senior year to attend Trinity International University. Growing up under these conditions was not the easiest to always deal with, falling victim to a number of challenges. These life experiences ignited a passion to work with young people and become somewhat of a mentor that young people would feel comfortable opening up to and assisting them reach a level of success as well as become positive contributors to their communities.