West Town Academy

West Town Academy
534 N Sacramento Blvd

Cook County

United States
School typeCharter Public School
EstablishedSeptember 1998
FounderWilliam Leavy
OversightChicago Public Schools
DeanKendall Holliday
PrincipalDiane Rodriguez
Age17 to 21
Number of students200
Average class size25
Hours in school day8:30 AM - 4:00 PM
Campus typeurban
Colour(s)Blue and White
AthleticsBasketball, Flag Football, Volleyball, Bowling, Softball
Athletics conferenceChicago Area Alternative Education League
Team nameWest Town Warriors
AccreditationIllinois State Board of Education
NewspaperWest Town Times
Communities servedWest Side of Chicago
AffiliationYouth Connection Charter School and Alternative School Network

West Town Academy is a part of Greater West Town Community Development Project, a communitarian non-profit organization working toward development on the West Side of Chicago.

The school originated as a GED program aimed at Chicago high school dropouts. It became a fully state-certified high school in 1998 and has been retrieving "disenrolled" minority students from the Chicago Public Schools system through its association as a campus of Youth Connection Charter School.[1][2] It also operates as an independent high school through the enrollment of students who are wards of the court and the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services. This situation makes West Town Academy both a public and private school simultaneously.

The school and its parent agency have hosted many local, statewide and national politicians. Then newly elected state senator Barack Obama was the commencement speaker for the class of 2000. Chicago Mayor Richard M. Daley, Illinois governors Rod Blagojevich and Pat Quinn, and U.S. Secretary of the Treasury Timothy Geithner have all used it as a podium to make policy statements. Democratic presidential candidate Senator John Kerry and then candidate for the U.S. Senate from Illinois Obama held a campaign event in its original location during the 2004 campaign.

The school was founded by William Leavy, who is also director of its parent organization, The school moved to its new location, 534 N Sacramento, Chicago, IL, in June 2010.


  1. ^ Grossman, Kate N. Chicago Sun-Times. Schools pressured to dump bad students, critics say. January 9, 2004. pg. 8.
  2. ^ Olszewski, Lori. Chicago Tribune. 1 in 5 blacks drop out. November 11, 2003. pg. 1.

External links

Coordinates:41°53′27.9″N 87°42′10.1″W / 41.891083°N 87.702806°W / 41.891083; -87.702806

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