History, Mission & Vision


The UNO Charter School Network (UNO-CSN) was created by the United Neighborhood Organization (UNO) in 1998 with the opening of its first school, Octavio Paz. UNO is metropolitan Chicago’s largest Hispanic community- based organization and has worked with local families for decades on issues ranging from school reform to immigration. UNO-CSN serves as an extension of UNO’s commitment to advancing the lives of community residents by challenging students, parents, and faculty to reach the highest of academic standards. Over the past 10+ years, UNO-CSN has increased education opportunities to deserving and capable students in Chicago by expanding the network to include 12 K-8 elementary schools and 3 high schools.

School Name Neighborhood Grades Served Year Opened
Octavio Paz Little Village K-8 1998
Rufino Tamayo Gage Park K-8 2005
Bartolome de Las Casas Pilsen K-8 2006
Carlos Fuentes Avondale K-8 2006
Officer Donald J. Marquez Brighton Park K-8 2007
SPC Daniel Zizumbo Archer Heights K-8 2008
PFC Omar E. Torres Archer Heights K-8 2008
Major Hector P. Garcia MD High School Archer Heights 9-12 2008
Sandra Cisneros Brighton Park K-8 2010
Esmeralda Santiago Humboldt Park K-8 2011
UNO Soccer Academy Elementary Gage Park K-8 2011
Roberto Clemente Galewood K-8 2012
UNO Rogers Park Elementary Rogers Park K-8 2012
UNO Brighton Park Brighton Park K-8 2013
UNO Rogers Park High School Rogers Park 9 2013
UNO Soccer Academy High School Gage Park 6-9 2013



UNO leads the transformation of the Hispanic Community toward an educated, powerful, and prosperous citizenry by engaging and challenging it to redefine its potential and its legacy in metropolitan Chicago and the United States of America.

UNO-CSN seeks to redefine the culture and expectations of public education, especially in urban environments among minority students. Too often, inner-city schools are satisfied attaining the low standards that many administrators and society have set for them. To change this scenario, UNO-CSN maintains structured and challenging school environments focused on clearly outlined goals and standards. This philosophy applies not only to students, but to all employees of the school, who are held to high levels of accountability and performance. Within UNO-CSN, academic success is not a hope, but an expectation.

Together, UNO-CSN parents/guardians and employees give students the tools they need to achieve success in and out of the classroom. UNO-CSN students receive a quality education that focuses on the fundamentals of literature, language, mathematics, science and the arts. As students grow scholastically, they are also encouraged to explore and understand their roles as individuals within a diverse and dynamic world. By stressing these themes, our school strives to embody excellence and passion for education.



The vision of all UNO high schools is to graduate global, model citizens via rigorous critical study to be self- disciplined, articulate, entrepreneurial, and life-long learners.

The UNO Student will graduate with the following characteristics:

+ A global person who bridges cultures by knowing how to foster and sustain healthy relationships;

+ A model for the highest standards of citizenship;

+ Self-disciplined, self-aware and self-accountable;

+ Articulate with the capacity to communicate with all audiences;

+ Entrepreneurial and self-confident to take calculated risks, be competitive, and self-motivated;

+ A life-long learner who engages in acquiring and applying knowledge.

The focus of all UNO high schools is both college preparatory and career preparatory, allowing students the opportunity to explore skills and content necessary for their future endeavors.