Award Year: 2020

Elm Elementary School

15W201 60Th Street
Burr Ridge, IL, 60527-6982

(630) 861-4000

Mrs. Sara Olson, Principal at time of Nomination

Title I School

Hinsdale CCSD 181

School Website


To provide a premier educational experience that teaches students to be critical thinkers and enables them to achieve their full potential academically, socially, and emotionally.

Student Demographics
  • Black/African American: 2%
  • White: 50%
  • Hispanic: 8%
  • Asian: 32%
  • Two or more races: 9%
Celebrating differences at Elm School.

Celebrating differences at Elm School.

Elm School lies tucked in the northeast corner of suburban Burr Ridge, IL. Serving 288 students in grades K-5, Elm has a rich history spanning more than 50 years in the community. In collaboration with parents, PTO, and community involvement, Elm develops strong character in students with a focus on integrity, compassion, and respect. Diversity is celebrated. Elm is a place where families come together to support educational programs, extracurriculars, and the community.

Technology is used to enhance, not replace, the curriculum and Elm has managed this balance artfully. Students engage with technology through 1:1 deployment (grades 3-5) and access to iPads (grades K-2). The Elm Innovation Lab contains programs and tools that allow students to explore areas of Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Mathematics (STEAM) with engaging projects and open maker-space times. Mobile components allow students access to these concepts directly in the classroom and engage in cross-curricular instruction to build their expertise, tinker, and create across settings.

With a teacher retention rate of 89 percent, Elm has the unique ability to continually evaluate and hone high quality instructional practices. Teachers use embedded collaboration to continually monitor student performance. Teachers do not stop at teaching their students; they are committed to learning and growing themselves. Professional development is integral to grade level co-planning and staff meetings. It is a sense of pride to be able to share instructional practices, knowledge, and successes among colleagues. With that, a sense of trust is built to allow teachers and students to find strength in vulnerability and truly understand that Elm is a progressive space to grow and learn.