CMSA is committed to the success of our students, providing them with an innovative education and unique opportunities that lead to impressive results. Check out our students’ and school’s incredible educational and extracurricular accomplishments. 

September 2020


April 25, 2017.   US News and World Report Ranks Chicago Math and Science Academy Among Top High Schools Nationally with a “Silver” Rating.   This marks the third consecutive year that CMSA has made this distinguished list of excellent schools. The results published on April 25, 2017 means that CMSA is among the best high schools in the nation  The report also shows that CMSA is the highest ranked charter school in the state of Illinois and is the only Silver recipient among charter schools. “This is a phenomenal achievement by our students, teachers and administrative staff who worked hard throughout the year to maintain the highest level of excellence possible. CMSA truly is Where Excellence Thrives. We are honored to receive the highest rank of any charter school in our state, and to be recognized by U.S. News & World Report for three years in a row”,  states Principal Ali Kuran.

August 30, 2016. Chicago Math & Science Academy Ranked among Best Public Charter High Schools by Chicago Magazine  Chicago Magazine, a monthly magazine published by Tribune Publishing that concentrates on human-interest stories in and around Chicago, recently released its annual report of the 2016 Best Public Schools in the Chicagoland area. Chicago Math and Science Academy (CMSA), a public charter high school managed by Concept Schools, earned the second highest ranking in Chicago for Public Charter High Schools.

August 18, 201 US NEWS AND WORLD REPORT RANKS CHICAGO MATH & SCIENCE ACADEMY AMONG TOP HIGH SCHOOLS NATIONALLY WITH “SILVER”RATING For the second year in a row, Chicago Math and Science Academy (CMSA), rated Level 1+ by Chicago Public Schools, is profiled in US News and World Report’s Best High Schools in the nation earning a  “Silver” rating by the publication. The Silver rating advances CMSA’s ranking from its Bronze rating in 2015.

May 27, 2016. STEM City Festival at Daley Plaza
CMSA joined forces with HSA Belmont, HSA McKinley, and HSA Southwest for the first annual STEM City Festival in downtown Chicago. It was great event showcasing the many talents of all our students. This event showcased 5-12 grade students who have mastered engineering concepts, science properties, and mathematical skills and knowledge including music and art to the performance level. Students presented amazing, interactive demonstrations where people could hop on a hovercraft, walk on “water”, see disappearing water and operate a Nerf Ball propulsion shooter.

May 2016. Alumni Michael Dennison graduates from U.S. Naval Academy
Michael Dennison graduated CMSA back 2012. It is our pleasure and an honor to announce that Dennison graduated from the United States Naval Academy last weekend! He will join us this month as Guest Speaker for our high school graduation.

April 10, 2106 – STEMCON Winners at CMSA

Students from all Concept Schools participated in the annual STEMCON Fair in Cleveland and our CMSA students won many awards. On the High School side the winners are Afifa Chaudhry for Best Category in Microbiology; Sophia Caballero won Gold; Amaka Nwaezeigwe won Silver; Bizi and Yared both won Gold medals; Rahwa Berhe won a Silver medal, and Hassan Abioye won a Gold Medal. The Middle School winners were River Atwood-Winninger who won a Gold medal and Shane Olivera received a Silver medal. Roshaan Siddiqui and Lance Velez also won for their PLTW skills.

March 21, 2016 – Students Excel in Spoke Word Competition
CMSA students excelled at the Concept Schools Spoken Word competition came home with three awards. Patsy Perez (11th grade) took 2nd place in the Freeform Spoken Word category of the competition and Justin Baynes (10th) tied for 3rd place. In the persuasive speech category, Samantha Garcia (10th) took second place. In addition to that, Shagufta Khan (10th) read an excerpt of her speech, “Citenzhip=Equality,” which took 3rd place this year in the Concept Schools Writing competition for the 9-12th grade. Our students who competed in the Recited poem category (Gustavo Cruz), and the Group Piece category (Gustavo Cruz, Kerry Williams, Patsy Perez, and Justin Baynes) also did an excellent job.

March 15, 2016 – MSA Open as Polling Place
For the first time in our school’s history, CMSA will open its door as a polling place on Tuesday, 3/15/16, for the important primary election. Our music room will be transformed into a regular polling place for residents of the 49th Ward.

March 9, 2016- CMSA Presents the Good Neighbor Award
Mr. Tony Iniquez (aka Mr. Rogers Park) received the Good Neighbor Award at a community breakfast attended by his many friends from the community who came out to honor all the contributions he has made through the years to our Rogers Park neighborhood. Among his many accomplishments are his service as president of the Touhy Park Advisory Council for eight years. Tony is also member of the 24th police District Advisory Council, being a CAPS facilitator for beat 2423, and working with Alderman Joe Moore’s Participatory Budgeting Leadership committee. Most recently he is responsible for bringing a new playground to the park.

February 19, 2016- Students Promote MathCon on “Windy City Live”
A group of students from CMSA, Horizon Science Academy Belmont, Horizon Science Academy McKinley Park, and Horizon Science Chicago Southwest took part in ABC 7’s “Windy City Live” to help promote the MathCon competition in Chicago. Mr. Acapultu was the emcee for the contest between hosts of the program and our students. Ms. Armour led the segment with a beautiful introduction to MathCon. Our own Roshaan Siddiqui enjoyed being part of the team going against the emcees of the show.

February 10, 2016 – Rogers Park Web Creators Unveiled
Lumity, The Rogers Park Business Alliance and the Chicago Math & Science Academy team up on February 22 to help increase STEM career achievement at the school’s first Student Enterprise Event. The student web development team, The Rogers Park Web Creators, will be pitching web services to an audience of prospective clients: Rogers Park small businesses and nonprofits. Clients will be charged fees for the work performed by the student teams. Additional funders and partners in the initiative include CompTIA, Chicagoland Workforce Funders Alliance and Accenture.

January 22, 2016. CMSA Students Tackle HCSB Healthcare Challenge
Students involved in the Rogers Park Web Creator project participated in a competition at HCSC to create a mobile application to fight obesity. The winning team’s prize? A paid summer internship with HCSC! Congratulations to Patrice Torres, Alex Sanchez Utham Adebayo and Oumar Keita on winning this paid internship opportunity.

Chicago Math and Science Academy (CMSA) junior Anthony Howard, reached a milestone when he was chosen to represent CMSA at this year’s Illinois Music Education Association (ILMEA) Festival Competition on November 12, 2015 at Elmhurst College. He is one only 60 from the 2,000 students who auditioned for this honor to perform in this prestigious festival. Anthony plays the tuba, an instrument that few people are capable of playing well, due to its demanding technique. The tuba also comes with the added bonus of being considered a scholarship instrument due to its technical difficulty. By playing the tuba so well Anthony will have access to scholarships for his college education.

October 14, 2015 – Chicago Math and Science Academy Presents Public Service Award
Bruce Rasey, Executive Director of the Howard Area Community Center (HACC), accepted the award on behalf of his staff and volunteers who make their organization the cherished institution it is today. For almost 50 years HACC has done the heavy lifting in our community by assisting low-income individuals and families with issues such as poverty, hunger, education, health-related programs, etc. HACC is a vital part of what makes Rogers Park such a special community.

October 30, 2015 – For Third Year in a Row, CMSA received an “EXCELLENT” Rating by Chicago Public Schools
Chicago Math & Science Academy (CMSA) has achieved a Level 1+ “Excellent” status in the 2014-2015 School Quality Rating Policy (SQRP) report released by Chicago Public Schools. The report establishes the indicators of school performance and growth and the benchmarks against which a school’s success is evaluated on an annual basis. This marks CMSA’s 3rd year of having an “Excellent” rating (either a Level 1 or Level 1+). The SQRP report is based on school performance metrics such as PSAE /ACT scores, student growth in math and reading, drop-out rate, and attendance rate. This rating places CMSA amongst the highest performing public schools, both charter and district, in Chicago. CMSA’s School Quality Report by CPS is attached and can be found on
According to the report, CMSA students made significant gains in key areas:
• Reading growth on NWEA MAP* (grades 6-8) = is in the top 15% of schools nationally
• Math growth on NWEA MAP* (grades 6-8) = is in the top 6% of schools nationally
• Growth of EPAS assessment series (grades 11 PLAN to ACT) = is in the top 4% nationally
• College Persistence Rate (class of 2013) = 84.6%
• Attendance Rate = 97.3%
**NWEA = Northwest Evaluation Association & (MAP) = Measures of Academic Progress are nationally recognized norm-referenced assessments used as one metric in the school quality equation.
Comparison of Student Growth of CMSA with CPS and Nationwide
These are the district-wide medians/averages in each category. These include all schools with data (charters, non-selective district schools, selective district schools). The averages are unweighted – meaning they do not take into account the size of the school. (National Growth Percentile = Average growth of the school compared to national average growth for schools with the same average pretest score. The school is assigned a percentile representing where it would fall on the national distribution. The national average is the 50th percentile.) *This college persistence rate is among charter schools in Chicago only.

Chicago Math and Science Academy (CMSA), Where Excellence Thrives, is pleased to announce Mr. Ali Kuran as its new principal. Mr. Kuran served as principal at Quest Charter Academy in Peoria for the last three years. He joined the CMSA team on August 1, 2015. Mr. Kuran has a degree from the University of Dayton, where he earned his Master’s Degree in Educational Leadership. The 2015-2016 school year marks his 13th year in education. He taught middle school and high school Math for several years and has been an administrator for 10 years. Mr. Kuran currently holds a professional principal’s license in both Illinois and Ohio.

May 29, 2015 – CMSA Receives “Bronze” Rating from US World & News Report
This prestigious “Bronze” rating from US World & News Report is an honor we share with our parents, students, staff, and our Rogers Park community. The award recognizes CMSA’s commitment to the education and ranks our school as one of the top 25% of all high schools in the United States.

CMSA’s high school robotics team, the RoboTitans, were recognized by Mayor Emanuel and the City Council for their efforts with a resolution presented by Alderman Joe Moore. The resolution congratulated and “saluted them for their proud representation of our City’s youth on the world stage”. The RoboTitans were the only Chicago team to compete in the FIRST Tech Challenge (FTC) Robotics World Championship in April 2015. 128 teams from around the world competed for the honor of being the world’s best.

CMSA senior Denzel Akosa becomes the first student at CMSA to receive the Gates Millennium Scholarship (GMS) before he begins his college career at Northwestern University in the fall. He will attend Northwestern on a full-ride scholarship. CMSA is one of 3 charter schools in Chicago whose students have received the Gates Millennium Scholarship. The Gates Millennium Scholars Program, funded by a grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, was established in 1999 to provide outstanding low income African American, American Indian/Alaska Native, Asian Pacific Islander American, and Hispanic American students with an opportunity to complete an undergraduate college education in any discipline they choose. .

Chicago Math and Science Academy‘s robotics teams have won 7 awards in three consecutive competitions since the year began. These wins have earned them the right to proceed on to State Finals in Ohio and Illinois. The RoboTitans, are set to compete at the Illinois State Championship and the RoboWarriors, will compete in the Ohio State Championship.On the weekend of January 18-19th, the CMSA teams earned two trophies in the FIRST Tech Challenge (FTC) Qualifier Tournament in Ohio. CMSA’s RoboWarriors won a First Place trophy in the semi-finals round. In addition, the RoboWariors also won First Place Winning Alliance at this event. The RoboWarriors will compete in Ohio for the FTC State Championship at ISPACE on February 13-14, 2015.

January 23, 2015 – Chicago Math and Science Academy Students Win Top Awards in Various Disciplines
Chicago Math and Science Academy students won awards for poetry, robotics and science over the Dr. Martin Luther King memorial weekend. Their hard work and efforts culminated in recognition as top performing Chicago Public School students.Sidney Hunt and Ololade Taiwo were among the hundreds of students who submitted their work for the Roosevelt University’s Auditorium Theatre’s “Too Hot to Handel” student poetry competition. Sidney and Ololade wrote poems reflecting on Dr. Martin Luther King’s vision of “beloved community”. Both poems won the top two prizes taking 1st place and runner-up. This marked the first year that both the first place and runner-up winners came from the same school. Sidney and Ololade had the honor of performing their poems at the Saturday and Sunday “Too Hot to Handel: Jazz Gospel Messiah” performances at the Auditorium theatre for audiences of over 2,400 people. Their poems are currently on display in the theatre.
The CPS Northwest Regional Science Fair was also a great success for CMSA students. All of the students who competed in this fair won awards. First Place prize went to sophomores Bizi Obedi, Jocelyn Perez, Haris Qazi and senior Sana Slote. These top prize winners make up four out of the 100 students moving on to compete in the CPS City Science Fair at the Museum of Science and Industry from March 19 – 22nd. Second place at the Regional went to senior Denzel Akosa, third place went to seniors Tayyaba Hanif, Hernan Razo, and junior Ying Yu.

January 6, 2015 – Chicago Math and Science Academy Graduates Earned the Highest College Persistence Rate
Based on the latest data released by Chicago Public Schools (CPS), CMSA graduates earned the highest college persistence rate (86%) among students who graduated in 2012 from non-selective public schools in the city of Chicago. Source:
The College Persistence Rate refers to the percentage of students who return to college for their second year. This accountability metric has recently been included in the School Quality Rating Policy (SQRP) developed by CPS to evaluate high school performance in Chicago Public Schools. It also serves as a marker for postsecondary education continuation behavior that leads to college graduation.

Chicago Math and Science Academy, Where Excellence Thrives, rated a Level 1 “Excellent” school by CPS, honored the 24th District Police Department with is inaugural “Public Service Award” , to recognize the men and women who model public service in the Rogers Park community. CMSA presented this award to Commader Waldera and Sargent Robert Kane during a community breakfast at the school. The students paid tribute by creating art work, writing thank you letters as well as performing musical numbers for the guests.

Chicago Math and Science Academy, Where Excellence Thrives, rated a Level 1 “Excellent” school by CPS, inaugurates a new community service award, the “CMSA Good Neighbor Award” to recognize positive figures in the Rogers Park community. CMSA has chosen Mr. Hashmi Syed, Owner for 7-Eleven, as the first recipient of its award. The award will be presented to Mr. Syed at a community breakfast on Tuesday, February 25th, 2014 at 9:00am at the school at 7212 N. Clark Street. Mr. Syed came to Chicago in 1969 and worked as a graphic artist. In 1991, he became the owner for the 7- Eleven store at 1441 West Pratt in Rogers Park. His store has been a staple of the Rogers Park area for the past 23 years. Mr. Syed has served as treasurer, vice president and president of this successful franchise operation.

September 8, 2014 – CMSA and Centro Romero Partner to offer FREE ESL Classes
CMSA , rated Excellent High School by Chicago Public Schools, is offering free ESL classes for adults beginning Monday, September 15, 2014, from 6:30-8:30pm. These classes are made possible through a partnership with Centro Romero. The classes are open to anyone in the Rogers Park community who has an interest in learning to speak English. They are scheduled to run until December 17, 2014 and will take place on Mondays and Wednesdays.

Chicago Math and Science Academy has added a Computer Technology Center (CCT) which will be open to parents and community members 5 days a week. The Technology Center is made possible through the “Eliminate the Digital Divide” grant from Lumity.CTT hours are Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday from 5:00pm-7:00pm and on Saturday from 9:00am-1:00pm. The classes are structured as a self-paced learning program. CMSA students will assist in the training of family and community members on basic digital literary skills. The CCT is embedded within the larger operations at the school as well. The Microsoft Academy Certification program is now part of the curriculum for seniors at the school.

CMSA senior Ayesha Yousuf has been recently named as a 2014 Golden Apple Illinois Scholar. Over 1,600 nominations were received for this prestigious and notable achievement. Ms. Yousuf is among 175 Illinois students to receive this honor. CMSA College Counselor Mrs. Turkay nominated Ayesha for the award. “She is a very responsible student who volunteers for various community projects. Ayesha is very patient, understanding and kind. She does not give up or become easily discouraged when she is faced by challenges. On the contrary, she works harder to achieve her goal. I think these are assets all teachers should have and that is why I nominated her,” state Mrs. Turkay. Ayesha has been a student at CMSA since the 9th grade. By choosing teaching as her career Ayesha is following in her mother’s footsteps. The Golden Apple Scholars of Illinois is a highly competitive program which seeks the best and brightest of Illinois youth interested in a teaching career.

February 25, 2012– Chicago Math and Science Concert Band Students Bring Home the Gold
Chicago Math and Science Academy Concert Band students represented CMSA at the Annual Chicago All-City Solo and Ensemble Festival Competition. Students competed against hundreds of Chicago Public School students from various schools around the city. Their dedication and hard work are evident, as they all received medals.Gold Medalists: Anthony Lazcano, Hernan Razo, Alexandra Alvarez, Saleem Khan, Damilola Oyedokun, Matilda Patterson, Marisol Palma, Winifred Obanor, Jessica Clarke, Lishan Rahman, Matthew McCray, Kimberly Medina, Kevin Carrillo, and Ursula Enem. Silver Medalists: Cesar Ayala, Michael Victoria, Teliane Bakala, and Christopher Davis.

March 8, 2012– Students Excel Outside the Classroom at Concept School’s Science and Engineering Fair
Around 500 students from seven Midwest states showcased their impressive, independently created projects at Concept Schools’ 9th Annual Science and Engineering Fair on March 3, 2012 at Cleveland State University. Concept Schools, a not-for-profit charter school management company, manages 27 tuition-free, high performing, college preparatory schools in the Midwest with a math, science and technology emphasis. Students competed in 14 categories ranging from health science, physics and zoology to engineering, biochemistry and computer science in a junior division (grades 5-8) and senior division (grades 9-12). The CMSA results: won Best School in senior category, Winifred Obanor won Best Category in Electronics and Engineering, Damilola Oyedokun won Best Category in Biochemistry, and Raolat Odeyale won Best Category in Physics. Overall, CMSA won 3 best medals, 5 gold medals, and 3 silver medals.
Congratulations to the following students for winning medals: Damilola Oyedokun, Winifred Obanor, Raolat Odeyale, Rahila Qureshi, Milosz Tomaszewski, Safa Slote, Hernan Razo, Muhammad Aftab, Jerry Zhu, Teliane Bakala, and Estrellita Correa.

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