Reporting Harry Porterfield
CHICAGO (CBS) – She grew up in Englewood and has found a special way to give back to the community.
CBS 2’s Harry Porterfield says Angela Thomas is Someone You Should Know.
Her education began as a Head Start student at Oliver Wendell Holmes Elementary School. For Angela Lavette Thomas, who grew up in the englewood community, it was the beginning of a journey in education that would lead her right back to where she started.
“My early years, I remember playing with my friends, jumping rope. I always remember playing school,” she said. “I converted my basement into a classroom and we enrolled students off the block.”
In those days, Holmes Elementary was only K-5. Thomas was beaming with pride when she finished the 5th Grade at Holmes.
Years later, college and a master’s degree followed for her, but in 1992 she became a 2nd Grade teacher at her old school.
“It was a mix of emotions. Of course, I was excited and it felt like I was coming home, because everybody was still here,” she said. “Mr. Bradley was still here, Ms. Lewis was still here, my kindergarten teacher was still here, teaching.”
Thomas would go from teaching 2nd Grade to 5th Grade, then became the school’s literary coordinator.
Three years ago, she was assigned to be the school’s principal.
“I will say that prior to becoming principal, I was assistant principal for four years,” she said. “But it’s nothing like being in the hot seat.”
Thomas grew up in Englewood and spent 34 years of her life as a resident of the community. Now she welcomes the opportunity to give back.
“I guess It was just instilled in me as a child,” she said. “You always reach back and you help those who come in behind you. … I would not be in the position that I am now if others had not reached out and helped me.”
Thomas, who has spent most of her life in Englewood and is now principal of Englewood’s Holmes Elementary; she’s Someone You Should Know.