Downers Grove North honored by Illinois Art Education Association

Downers Grove North High School is one of only five Illinois schools to have been recognized by the Illinois Art Education Association (IAEA) with an inaugural award, “School of Distinction,” for 2021.

The recognition celebrates schools that offer rigorous art, design and media education programs.

Faculty members Amy Bernard, Robyn Bican, Josh Hoering and Marty Voelker were honored by IAEA for the distinguished programming and significant opportunities offered to North High School students.

“I am incredibly proud of the Visual Art team of the DGN Fine Arts Department for their work in pursuing this high level of distinction,” North High Fine Arts Department Chair Brayer Teague said in a news release. “Ms. Bernard, Ms. Bican, Mr. Hoering and Mr. Voelker are all exceptional educators, and this award speaks to the comprehensive course offerings and high level of community engagement within our Fine Arts community.”

To earn the School of Distinction Award, North High School demonstrated excellence in curriculum and assessment, authentic learning, showcasing student learning, connected communities, leadership and advocacy and professional development and training. Learn more at

According to the IAEA, participating in high-quality art, design and media courses develops student creativity, critical thinking, collaboration and communication skills in valuable ways. Students in the programs gain social and emotional skills along with college, career and citizenship readiness. Research indicates that schools with successful programs experience increased student attendance, engagement and academic performance, when compared with schools that don’t have these programs.

To learn more about the award, visit; to learn more about the DGN Fine Arts Department, contact Brayer Teague at