Ms. Jeanette Butala DiBella ’75

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Wall of Fame Class of 2008

Ms. Jeanette Butala DiBella ‘75 is an award-winning educator serving as principal of Providence-St. Mel School, a private college prep school in Chicago. An innovative educator, she is known for her compassionate, creative and tough-love approach to education. Ms. DiBella joined Providence-St. Mel in 1996 as Lower School Director where she developed the consequence continuum for the lower school and aligned the curriculum to national elementary standards. She was named assistant principal in 1997 and principal in 2000. Under her leadership, Providence-St. Mel continually surpasses national standards and has received numerous national and regional honors as a model for urban schools. Ms. DiBella began her career in 1979 teaching children with learning disabilities and emotional/behavioral disorders and has taught in Maryland, Ohio and Kentucky. Ms. DiBella was named the Kentucky Special Educator of the Year in 1995. In 2004, she received “The Crystal Apple Award”, the highest distinction for outstanding educators, from Michigan State University’s College of Education. In 2006, Ms. DiBella was honored as a Trey Whitfield Foundation Honoree. The Trey Whitfield Foundation selects individuals who have demonstrated a commitment to excellence in education. Ms. DiBella holds a master’s equivalency degree in education from Loyola College/Baltimore County Schools and a bachelor’s degree in special education from Marywood College.

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