Ms. Francesca Verdecchia-Peck joined Polaris Charter Academy in 2007 as a founding teacher, teaching kindergarten/first grade. Ms. Peck now teaches fifth grade. She came to Polaris with nine years of teaching experiences, ranging from primary grades to sixth grade. In 2000, she served as a sixth grade teacher in Steger, Illinois; from 2001–2003 she taught third grade in Dolton, Illinois; and from 2003–2007, Ms. Verdecchia-Peck taught second grade for Chicago Public Schools in the Hyde Park neighborhood. Through a partnership with the University of Chicago’s Urban School Improvement Network, she served as a Balanced Literacy demonstration teacher and has provided multiple professional development workshops for educators. She received her Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education from Northern Illinois University. She enjoys married life, and some of her favorite hobbies include cooking, reading, and spending time with friends and family.