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About Our School


Children develop at different rates, and at Clow, our focus is to foster individual growth in both academics and human development. Our educational challenge is to produce a student who has learned how to learn, one who has learned how to adapt to change, one who knows that the ultimate security lies not in possessing knowledge - because it will surely change - but in the ability to seek it and use it. Student work and progress is assessed on a daily basis. We consistently ask, "Is the rate and content of learning sufficient?" We continually seek growth and improvement. Strategies and techniques are employed so that every child will be successful. We seek to provide an environment that enables every child to be the best that he/she can be, and to become a lifelong learner.


The mission of Clow School is to develop all students into becoming life-long, self-directed learners, problem-solvers, and effective communicators.  We are committed to developing students into goal-setters and quality producers.  Our children will be equipped with collaborative working skills and value becoming contributors to their community.

Core Values

The Core Values of Clow School are those we strongly believe in and are unwilling to compromise.  They are:

  • Open and honest communication and feedback with students, parents, business leaders, and community members is necessary.
  • A commitment to teamwork.  Students, parents, and educators are in this endeavor together and collectively we increase our effectiveness and efficiency.  Furthermore, we wish to enjoy life and our vocations and recognize that a positive attitude and a sense of community will increase the probability of this occurring.
  • Our school is truly student centered.  The people at Clow recognize that students are our reason for existing and we feel privileged to be an integral part in their development.
  • People and property, both private and public, should be treated with respect and dignity.
  • We focus on development of foundational basic skills.  This includes cultural, social, and academic areas of knowledge.
  • Our daily spirit is one of improvement.  Regardless of where we are today, we strive to be better tomorrow.

Fundamental Beliefs

  • All students can learn given effective instruction and appropriate material.
  • All students must become life-long learners, problem-solvers and effective communicators.
  • Ongoing assessment of student achievement and program effectiveness is essential for school improvement.
  • Parents, business, and community involvement are essential for school effectiveness and improvement.
  • Board of Education and Central Office Administration support are essential to school effectiveness and improvement.

Teaching Terminology


  • "IS IT GOOD ENOUGH TO PUT MY NAME ON IT": each child is continually asked to reflect upon the quality of his/her work by asking this introspective question
  • HEADINGS: headings refers to the information a student places at the top of a paper to identify his/her work (name, subject, date, etc.)
  • RUBRICS: components with grading values



  • CONTENT, PROCESS, PRODUCT: teachers consider these three components when developing lesson plans
  • CONTENT: information students should master
  • PROCESS: teaching strategies and learning activities designed to help students master content
  • PRODUCTS: finished work
  • BLOOM'S TAXONOMY: teachers expose students to all levels of thinking skills; we strive to reach higher-levels as frequently as possible



  • SEMANTICS: (e.g. root words, base words) - commas in a series: place a comma before the word "and"
  • INFORMATION LITERACY PACKET (EX. WORKS CITED VS. BIBLIOGRAPHY): the publication style students use when documenting research sources
  • BIG 6






  • SCIENTIFIC PROCESS/SCIENTIFIC METHOD consistent with ISAT - is used whenever students do scientific experiments or activities









  • A: Always demonstrating respect and responsibility because it is the right thing to do
  • B: Behaving responsibly and respectfully because a teacher is present
  • C: Choosing not to act responsibly or respectfully



Robert E. Clow (his father was Robert C. Clow) was the School Board President of District 40 (Wheatland Elementary District).  District 40 consolidated with two other districts in 1972 (Granger Elementary District 90 which included Longwood School, and Indian Plains Elementary District 182) to form Indian Prairie Community Unit School District 204.  Each of these districts educated children in grades 1-8.   Students attended grades 9-12 at Naperville High School District 107 (later to become Naperville Community Unit District 203).  Mr. Clow was a member of a prominent family who owned and operated farms in the region.

Clow and Hill Middle School were the first schools constructed following the creation of the district and the building of Waubonsie Valley High School. These schools were the outcome of a citizens committee examining district needs, a collaborative process that is still successfully employed today. 

In 1979 Clow was located in a rural portion of Naperville.   In fact, the first Principal,  Carl Pinnow, reports that when he came to visit the school during construction via Leverenz, the road ended where the county and city boundary met (today Flambeau Drive intersects Leverenz at this location). He had to leave his car at the dead end and walk to the school site.  By the time the school opened roads had been constructed, but you will see from the S.W. picture below, there were no houses. From the S.E. picture below you'll note many small plantings around the foundation.  Neighborhood volunteers (Wheatland View did exist at this time) joined school personnel in landscaping the grounds. Former Assistant Superintendent for Business Peter Gombert, and Board of Education member Owen Wavrinek, were among those who spent their weekend digging holes and planting  bushes and trees.

1979-1980 Opening of Clow School. Carl Pinnow, principal;
Clifford Crone, Superintendent.
1984-1985 Five Year Anniversary Celebration.
1986-1987 Bryan Craddock Award established;
Wall erected in Multi-Purpose Room for classrooms.
1988-1989 Portable classrooms come to Clow.
1989-1990 Carl Pinnow leaves to open Spring Brook School; Knoch Knolls, Brook Crossing, Old Sawmill, River Crest Estates, Sunset Ridge, Willow Gate leave;
John Ask instated as principal at Clow; Beginning of Project Arrow housed in portables for the whole district (3 years).
1989 Summer Multi-Purpose Room restored to original condition.
1992-1993 Life Safety Construction Project (enclosed LMC, removed western stairwell, installed elevator).
1993-1994  Last year for portable classrooms; donated to Valmeyer, Illinois (school lost to Mississippi flooding); Ashbury subdivision leaves to open Patterson.
1994-1995 First addition (two classrooms, PA room, office space).
1997-1998 Mrs. Lori Michelson retires after 17 years at Clow.
1999-2000 Clow's 20th Anniversary.
New Playground & Blacktop
Second addition (8 classrooms, offices, storage, stage in gym, kitchen, expanded LMC, computer lab, dedicated art & music rooms, expanded parking lot, exterior safety lighting & sidewalks, courtyard).
2000-2001 John Ask retires as Clow Principal.
2001-2011 Barbara Kaufman serves as Principal.
2004-2005 Clow's 25th Anniversary
2005-2006 Marsha Janssen retires after 25 years at Clow.
2006-2007 Joyce Brunsting retires after 11 years at Clow.
2008-2009 Clow's LMC recognized by the American Association of School Librarians (AASL) as the National School Library Program of the Year.
2009-2010 Clow's 30th Anniversary.
2010-2011 Clow's LMC recognized as state representative by the Illinois School Library Media Association in the AASL Vision Tour of the 50 United States.
2010-2011 Cathy Geers retires after 20 years at Clow.
2010-2011 Debbie Schelling retires after 18 years at Clow.
2011-Present Sarah Nowak serves as Principal.


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