Loukisha Smart-Pennix brings social service, community, and early learning experience to high school start-up
information provided by Unity Christian Academy
SOUTH HOLLAND, Ill. (June 18, 2018) – The Board of Directors of Unity Christian Academy (UCA) announced today that it has hired Loukisha Smart-Pennix as its Head of School.
According to UCA Board President Steve Blom, “We knew when we started our search over two years ago that it was going to be a challenge to find the person who was deeply committed to the unique vision for Christian education the Board has proposed, who was willing to take on the professional risk of a start-up school, and who possesses the skills we were looking for, especially in the areas of organizational leadership and networking. We thank God we have found that person in Loukisha Smart-Pennix. Her experience in leading educational organizations with significant structures and personnel is overshadowed only by her faith in Christ and the desire to see this affect every aspect of the learning culture at Unity Christian Academy.”
Smart-Pennix is a graduate of National Louis University with a Bachelor of Arts in Applied Behavioral Science and a Master of Science in Human Services Administration, as well as an Associate of Arts Degree from City Colleges of Chicago with a concentration in Social Service. She served for more than a decade as the Director of Children Services at the Chicago Department of Family Support Services followed by jobs in multiple capacities with the City of Chicago, including Support Service Coordinator and Assistant Director of Children Services. In 2014 she joined Illinois Action for Children as Vice President for Early Learning Programs, and was responsible for developing early learning programs and strengthening community systems in the suburbs of Cook County.
She is eagerly embracing the UCA challenge. “This position will allow me the opportunity to merge all of my passions into one,” she said. “My faith and relationship in God, my love for engaging parents and community and my love for education are all crucial aspects of this job. UCA’s commitment to ‘doing High School differently’ aligns with my philosophy that young minds need to learn how to live in the world around them, not be afraid to profess their love for Christ and to make an impact on the world using the education that UCA will provide them through service and learning.”
The Head of School is tasked to lead UCA effectively, ensuring high standards of academic excellence in well-rounded and holistic education programs. Smart-Pennix will be responsible for inspiring a Christ-centered community of lifelong learners through leadership and management of staff as well as growth and financial sustainability of the campus. The Head of School is the chief executive officer and supervises either directly or indirectly all employees of the school.
UCA is an ecumenical Christian High School which will be opening its doors to its first ninth-grade class on August 15, 2018. For its first year it will be located on the campus of Calvary Community Church, 16341 South Park Avenue in South Holland, Illinois. The school is still accepting enrollment for the 2018–2019 academic year. Further information can be found at www.WeAreUCA.org or by calling 708-980-1040.