Back in May, we told you that Chappell Elementary Principal Joseph Peila was collecting children’s books to take to Japan, where he’ll be traveling in a few days as part of an educator exchange program. The books will be distributed to Japanese youngsters who were displaced by the country’s 2011 earthquake and tsunami.
We always knew we lived in the midst of a generous community, but now we have proof. Brandee Tavano, LSC representative at Chappell (2135 W. Foster Ave.), tells us the school collected more than 1,000 new and gently used titles. “Please thank those who took the time to donate books,” she wrote in an email. “We appreciate it!!”
During his trip, Peila will represent Chicago and Chappell at a pair of “Chicago Days” events, serving up Chicago-style hot dogs and organizing English lessons while Japanese-American celebrities provide entertainment. Chappell plans to begin a Japanese Studies program next year, one of the reasons Peila was chosen to participate in the educator exchange.