Jason Patera is the Head of School at The Chicago Academy for the Arts, an internationally acclaimed, independent, arts-focused high school in Chicago’s River West neighborhood. Patera has been a part of the Academy community for more than 25 years, serving as an “intern”, faculty member, Chair of the Music Department, Assistant Head of School/Principal, and since June 2016, Head of School.
In 2001, Patera cofounded Caltera School, an award-winning music school whose alumni won more than $10 million in college scholarships, appeared on Letterman, Leno, and Kimmel, and performed and/or toured with Kelly Clarkson, Maroon 5, Train, George Clinton, the Meters, Rusted Root, and many more.
A jazz pianist and drummer, Patera is a Summa Cum Laude graduate of Berklee College of Music, where he studied arranging and contemporary writing and founded the college’s newspaper The Groove, now in its 25th year of publication. He also holds a Masters Degree in Educational Leadership and has been recognized by the U.S. Department of Education for excellence in teaching. Patera is a Golden Apple “Leader of Distinction” and in 2018 was one of seven finalists for the Golden Apple Leadership Award.