A Message from the Principal

  • Carranza Greetings and welcome to Gemini Junior High School – home of the Mustangs!

    It is with great pleasure that I welcome you -- parents and students alike -- to our 2017-2018 school year. Our school is a diverse learning community that stresses academic growth; social and emotional development; involvement through sports, activities, and clubs; and collaboration among staff, students, families, and community members. Our objective is to create a safe and vibrant teaching and learning community.

    We are child-centered and academically challenging: research-based practices are used to support each student’s unique pathway to success. All students receive a strong education in the core subjects of language arts, mathematics, science, and social studies. In addition, they receive physical education (kinetic wellness) and health – and have a choice of performance and fine arts options: art, music, choir, drama, and speech. Our Gemini staff is well trained, knowledgeable, and well versed in the academic, social, and emotional development of children.

    All District 63 schools focus on the whole child. Children and staff at Gemini work under the umbrella of a program called Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports (PBIS) that helps to teach behavioral expectations – being safe, respectful, responsible, and positive. It also assists in creating academic support for students who need it. The emphasis is on providing an environment where students can develop to their full potential.

    Gemini Junior High School is a wonderful place to learn and grow – and we welcome all families. Our strong Parent-Teacher organization (PTO) supports our goals and I hope you’ll consider getting involved.

    Together, with families and our community, we strive to create the best possible learning environment. We’re proud of our past achievements and excited about new possibilities. Please feel free to contact the school if you have any questions. Our administrative team – myself and Assistant Principals Karen Foley and Erica Perelgut -- are here to serve, and we are available for your questions.


    Dr. René D. Carranza

About Principal Carranza

  • Principal at Gemini Junior High since 2016, Dr. Carranza came to District 63 from Palatine Consolidated School District 15, where he served as Principal on Special Assignment, coaching three principals. He began his teaching career in 1978 as a K-1 teacher in Los Angeles. During his 39 years as an educator, he has held a variety of teaching and educational leadership positions, taking on his first Principal role at the West Contra Costa Unified School District in Richmond, California. Here in Illinois, Dr. Carranza served as Assistant Principal and Principal at District 15’s Winston Junior High, and Principal at two of CCSD 62's elementary schools.

    Dr. Carranza holds a BA in psychology from the University of Southern California, an MA in clinical psychology from United States International University, and an Ed.D. from Northern Illinois University. He received a Horace Mann Award in 2009 from the Illinois Principals Association for Innovative Programs, and a 2011 "Those Who Excel" Award of Excellence from the Illinois State Board of Education.