Ms. Paula Altekruse - Illinois Mathematics and Science Academy

Ms. Paula Altekruse

Ambassador, Awarded in 2016
IMSA Tenure: 1986-2015

Learning Specialist and Coordinator of Academic Support, Retired

During Ms. Altekruse’s tenure at IMSA, she served as mentor, advisor, and took on the role of in loco parentis for countless IMSA students. She developed curriculum and provided direct instruction about learning to students adjusting to IMSA’s academic expectations. As a frequent and welcome “student” in many IMSA classes, Ms. Altekruse worked closely with faculty to better understand course work and the student experience.

In her role as coordinator of disabilities, Ms. Altekruse developed educational plans and expanded IMSA’s ability to serve students with disabilities and learning differences including those on the Autistic Spectrum. She proactively worked with faculty, resident counselors and parents to address specific academic challenges and develop education plans. Through her involvement and coordination of Excel, she was instrumental in the integration of the program into IMSA curriculum. Additionally, she launched the Peer Tutor program with evening and I-day study groups.

Ms. Altekruse presented at numerous conferences, both promoting IMSA’s mission and to support other educators of gifted learners. Some of her presentations include:

When Gifted Learners Struggle: Developing Metacognitive Awareness and Self-Efficacy
Illinois Association for Gifted Children (IAGC), January 2011

Excel: Boosting Success for Under-served Populations (with Christopher Kolcu)
NCSSMST Conference at NAGC, November 2010

Resilience and Motivation, and the Social/Emotional Vulnerabilities of Gifted Learners
Quest and DaVinci  – professional development guest speaker, 2009

“But I understand it! I’m just not good at testing;” Developing Metacognitive Awareness and Self-Efficacy in our Learners
NCSSSMST, November 2007