Thursday, October 27, 2016

Still time to plan
for School Board Members’ Day

In less than a month, communities, school districts, and residents throughout Illinois will have the chance to honor local citizens who have taken on the responsibility to serve as school board members.

Created by legislative action in 2008, School Board Members’ Day is observed each year on Nov. 15. The annual day of recognition serves as an opportunity to thank local school board members for their commitment to the school district and their dedication to the entire community.

The Theme for School Board Members’ Day is “Leadership Starts Here.” To assist with recognition efforts, IASB has created a number of materials to help districts and communities honor local school board members. The resources include a themed logo, sample press release, letter, and article, as well as marquee messages, Illinois school facts, and an honorary certificate that can be personalized and presented to board members at a meeting or other related school event. 

School districts can use any of the resources without additional permission from the Association. All of the materials are available for download on the IASB website.

Monday, October 24, 2016

Alliance Legislative Report 99-54

SCHOOL FUNDING REFORM PANELS MEET
Both Governor Bruce Rauner’s Illinois School Funding Reform Commission and Senator Kimberly Lightford’s (D-Maywood) group of education stakeholders and legislators continue to meet to discuss school funding reform. The Commission, comprised mostly of legislators, has been meeting every two weeks for the past couple of months. Lightford’s group has been meeting regularly as well.

Much of what has been done to this point is background information and research, but there has been discussion of potential alternative funding distribution plans like the Evidence-Based Funding Model highlighted in the Vision 20/20 platform. The Alliance organizations have been actively involved in the meetings and discussions and have made presentations regarding the evidence-based plan.

Now that all four legislative caucuses and the governor’s office are fully engaged in the process, expectations have risen to the point where some type of new school funding formula is anticipated in the spring.

Click here to read the complete Alliance Legislative Report, including a list of enacted laws with additional mandates on local school districts. 


See and hear student artists at Conference

The Monticello Middle School Jazz Ensemble will
perform at the First General Session of the 2016 Conference.
Those attending the 2016 Joint Annual Conference will have the opportunity to sample visual and performing arts featuring Illinois school students.

Selected artwork from Illinois public elementary and high school students will be on display in the Grand Ballroom area of the Hyatt Regency Chicago East Tower. There will be 40 pieces of art highlighting a variety of media, including painting, drawing, and printing. The Illinois Arts Education Association has curated this exhibit to be a cross-section of what Illinois students are capable of creating artistically.

Friday, October 21, 2016

Parallel paths: Groups work towards school funding reform

Ben Schwarm
IASB Deputy Executive Director Ben Schwarm comments on the efforts towards reforming Illinois school funding formula.

Separate groups looking into making changes to the state’s school funding formula seem to be moving on parallel paths to this point. Governor Bruce Rauner chose state Secretary of Education Beth Purvis to head up his Illinois School Funding Reform Commission. The Commission, comprised mostly of legislators, has been meeting every two weeks since August 3. The target for the Commission is to unveil its proposal in February.

Meanwhile, Senator Kimberly Lightford (D-Maywood) has established a group of education stakeholders and legislators who also are seeking to make changes to the current school funding formula. The senator would also like to have a new plan ready to roll out next year. Generally, the same participants attend the meetings of both groups.

Thursday, October 20, 2016

2016 Conference Planner available

The online Conference Planner is now available for those planning to attend the 2016 Joint Annual Conference, Nov. 18-20. By accessing the planner, participants can view all events and create a personalized agenda.

Instructions for creating the personal planner are available by logging-in to the IASB member database, choosing the Members-Only tab at the top of the page, and selecting Annual Conference from the drop down menu. Once there, find the section entitled “2016 Conference Schedule Planner” and follow the link.

The Conference Planner allows the user to view by event type or category. Individual events in each category are listed in chronological order by title and description. Listed at the right of each event is the location by hotel, time, and room name. Multiple events may be chosen for each time slot.

After completing the personal agenda for the Conference, either download and print the agenda, or save it to a smartphone, tablet, or other device.

Those who are attending Conference for the first time may want to consider attending one of two orientation sessions (Friday at 11 a.m. or Saturday at 7:30 a.m.) for help in finding and selecting topics of interest.






Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Sneak peek of upcoming “Issues in Education” broadcast with IASB and IASA


The Illinois Association of School Boards and the Illinois Association (IASB) of School Administrators (IASA) will take part in a live radio broadcast of “Issues in Education” on October 27 with St. Louis’ KTRS 550. The program, scheduled to begin at 10:30 a.m. in the Old State Capitol in Springfield, will preview the 2016 Joint Annual Conference.

A sneak peek of the upcoming broadcast is now available at the “Issues in Education” website. The one-and-a-half hour program will be broadcast and streamed live here. Ittner Architects is sponsoring the program.

The scheduled speakers and topics for the radio program are as follows:

10:30 a.m. Segment 1: Opening, Introductions and Overview

Dennis Young, President & CEO, Ittner Architects
Robert Vogel, Director of Business & Relationship Development, Ittner Architects

10:45 a.m. Segment 2: Conference Overview, Vision 20/20 and School Funding Formula Update

Roger Eddy, Executive Director, Illinois Association of School Boards
Dr. Brent Clark, Executive Director, Illinois Association of School Administrators

11:15 a.m. Segment 3: School Safety and Security Updates

Ben Schwarm, Deputy Executive Director, Illinois Association of School Boards
Sara Boucek, Associate Director/Legal Counsel, Illinois Association of School Administrators
Rick Johnston, Superintendent, Mahomet-Seymour Community Schools

11:45 a.m. Segment 4: Optimizing Human Performance

Dennis Young, President and CEO, Ittner Architects

Learning Labs bring extra expertise
to Joint Annual Conference

Learning Labs, like this one last year, will return
to share vendor expertise at the 2016 Conference.
Like last year, attendees at this year’s Joint Annual Conference are being invited to attend Learning Labs, where vendors will offer targeted expertise via in-depth presentations and demonstrations of school products and services. The hour-long Learning Labs will take place in Aisle 100 of the 2016 Conference’s Exhibit Hall in the Hyatt Regency Chicago Riverside Center.

The presentation schedule for Friday, Nov. 18 and Saturday, Nov. 19 is as follows:

 



Friday 9 a.m. 
Keenan: Put Money Back in Your Classroom — Finding the Hidden Revenue in your Pharmacy Benefits

Friday 10:30 a.m. 
NaviGate/Lauren Innovations: Safety Planning and Preparation Best Practices

Friday Noon 
ECRA Group: The “Personalized Learner Profile” for Redefining College and Career Readiness

Friday 1:30 p.m. 
Learning Partners: Lead with 3-D: Bringing Virtual Reality into the Classroom

Friday 3 p.m. 
Performance Services: Benefits and Considerations for Solar Power

Saturday 9 a.m. 
NaviGate/Lauren Innovations: Safety Planning and Preparation Best Practices

Saturday 10:30 a.m. 
Performance Services: Benefits and Considerations for Solar Power

Saturday Noon 
ECRA Group: The “Personalized Learner Profile” for Redefining College and Career Readiness



Sunday, October 16, 2016

IASBO offers new courses on facilities in conjunction with IASB book

Illinois ASBO's Facilities Operations
Program covers a range of responsibilities.
The Illinois Association of School Business Officials has developed a Facilities Operations Program that “provides a new, consistent standard for the development of high quality school facilities professionals.”

Divided into four courses, the program allows school facilities professionals to develop the knowledge base school districts require in an ever-changing field. There is a mandatory base course, as well as three elective courses, covering maintenance, grounds, and custodial operations. Participants can take all four courses, or opt to take the base course and one of the specializations.

According to Illinois ASBO, “Facility management has changed dramatically over the years to include a wide range of responsibilities – from custodial, maintenance and grounds to legal issues, long-range planning, emergency management, and much more.” The courses will be offered on multiple dates throughout the year.

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Ten tax propositions,
16 bond issues on ballot

No fewer than 26 local school funding increase referendum questions are set to appear on the Nov. 8 primary election ballot, including 16 bond issues and 10 tax increase proposals. Many more school districts would benefit from eight countywide referenda (highlighted in yellow on the map) on sales tax propositions earmarked for school facility purposes.

The largest of the district finance propositions can be found in Champaign CUSD 4, where $183 million in new bond revenue could be raised if voters approve the district’s bond issue. The proposal asks voters to endorse borrowing to fund various school additions and renovations, and to completely replace one school building.

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

‘Issues in Education’ to broadcast Joint Annual Conference Preview

The event will be held at Representative Hall, Springfield.
The Illinois Association of School Boards and the Illinois Association (IASB) of School Administrators (IASA) will take part in a live radio broadcast of “Issues in Education” on St. Louis’ KTRS 550 AM on October 27. The program, to be broadcast at 10:30 a.m. from Representative Hall in the Old State Capitol in Springfield, will be presented as a Joint Annual Conference preview.

The one-and-a-half hour program will be broadcast and streamed live here. Ittner Architects is sponsoring the program.

IASB Executive Director Roger Eddy and IASA Executive Director Dr. Brent Clark will present an overview of the Joint Annual Conference set for November 18-20, and lead a conversation regarding the ongoing discussions surrounding the Illinois school funding formula. IASB Deputy Executive Director Ben Schwarm and IASA Associate Director and Legal Counsel Sara Boucek will follow with a dialogue regarding school safety and security.

The scheduled speakers and topics for the program are as follows:

10:30 a.m. Segment 1: Opening, Introductions and Overview

Dennis Young, President & CEO, Ittner Architects
Robert Vogel, Director of Business & Relationship Development, Ittner Architects

10:45 a.m. Segment 2: Conference Overview, Vision 20/20 and School Funding Formula Update

Roger Eddy, Executive Director, Illinois Association of School Boards
Dr. Brent Clark, Executive Director, Illinois Association of School Administrators

11:15 a.m. Segment 3: School Safety and Security Updates

Ben Schwarm, Deputy Executive Director, Illinois Association of School Boards
Sara Boucek, Associate Director/Legal Counsel, Illinois Association of School Administrators
Rick Johnston, Superintendent, Mahomet-Seymour Community Schools

11:45 a.m. Segment 4: Optimizing Human Performance

Dennis Young, President and CEO, Ittner Architects

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Conference deadlines nearing

There is still time to register for the upcoming 84th Joint Annual Conference that will take place Nov. 18-20 in Chicago. Conference registration rates of $445 per person will continue until Oct. 14. After that date, the rate will be $470.

Registration at the current rate must be made by 4 p.m. on Oct. 14. It can only be done by mail.

Those who register on-site at the Hyatt Regency Chicago can print and fill out a registration form ahead of time, or complete their registration upon arrival. The on-site registration desk will be open Friday and Saturday from 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. 

Limited housing is still available at Conference rates for three remaining hotels: the Sheraton Grand Chicago, Wyndham Grand Chicago Riverfront, and Marriott Chicago Downtown.

More information on registration and housing is available on the Conference webpage.

Saturday, October 8, 2016

Pritzker, Osmond nominated as IASB officers

Phil Pritzker
Joanne Osmond
The IASB Delegate Assembly will elect Association officers at the Joint Annual
Conference in Chicago. IASB’s nominating committee has endorsed Phil Pritzker, Wheeling CCSD 21, as president and Joanne Osmond, Lake Villa CCSD 41, as vice president.

Pritzker, who has served on his local school board since 1989, is seeking his second term as Association president. He joined IASB division leadership as a director-at-large in the North Cook Division in 1995 and then represented the division on the Association board of directors from 2009 to 2015. Pritzker has also served two years as vice president and has chaired the IASB Resolutions Committee.

Osmond, who has represented the Lake Division on the Association board since 1996, is seeking a second term as vice president. She served previously as division chairman and recently served on the Association’s executive committee. Osmond began local school board work in 1991, serving on the Antioch Community High School board from 1991 to 1995. Since 1995, she has been a member of the Lake Villa elementary school board.

The IASB Nominating Committee, which met in late August to interview candidates, is chaired by immediate past president Karen Fisher and includes directors Roger Pfister, Sue McCance, Mary Stith, and Ben Andersen. Carla Joiner-Herrod and Dennis Inboden serve as alternates.

The Association leaders elected by school board delegates will assume office at the close of the annual meeting of IASB’s Delegate Assembly on Nov. 19.

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Opinions on Education

The following are editorials, commentaries, and opinions from various sources regarding public education, collected in September 2016. Comments and opinions of websites linked from this page do not necessarily represent the opinions of the Illinois Association of School Boards.

Click on each headline to read more.

‘Send’ messages to your kids: Your future can see you
Christopher Heimerman, Sauk Valley Media, September 2

Panel's role critical in school boundary plans
Editorial Board, Quincy Herald-Whig, September 4

Opinion: Both sides must show respect
for District U46 transgender students
Linda McDaniel-Hale, Elgin Courier-News, September 9

Letter: If Chicago is a 'city of readers,'
then it should support its librarians
Julie Todaro, president, American Library Association; and Audrey Church, president, American Association of School Librarians, Chicago Tribune, September 9

Our View: District 186 extends helping hand, but parents must step up
Editorial Board, State Journal-Register, Springfield, September 12

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Two school districts
capture top school design awards

Judging was conducted at IASB headquarters, Springfield.
Two school projects have been named as the 2016 Award of Distinction winners in the annual Invitational Exhibition of Educational Environments, sponsored by IASB Service Associates. DLA Architects, Ltd. was honored for a remodel of the West Chicago High School science department. BLDD Architects was recognized for designing the new Meridian Middle/High School.

This is the 28th year for IASB’s juried school design competition.

The awards will be presented on Friday, Nov. 18, at the 2016 Joint Annual Conference in Chicago. Winning projects were selected by a blind-jury pool of architects and superintendents in September. In addition to the two Award of Distinction winners, the jury chose two projects for Awards of Merit and five Honorable Mention recipients.

All 23 entries in this year’s exhibit will be on display throughout the Conference. This year’s winning entries are listed by firm, school, and district:


Award of Distinction

BLDD Architects, Inc.
Meridian Middle/High School
Meridian CUSD 15, Macon

DLA Architects, Ltd.
West Chicago High School, Science Department Remodeling
Community HSD 94, West Chicago


Award of Merit

All entries will be added to a School Design Database.
PCM+Design Architects
Central Junior High School Phase II
East Peoria ESD 86

DLA Architects, Ltd.
Steger Intermediate Center
Steger SD 194


Honorable Mention

ARCON Associates, Inc.
Bannockburn School
Bannockburn SD 106

STR Partners LLC
Brookwood Middle School
Brookwood SD 167

Wight & Company
Joliet Central High School Student Center & Galleria Addition
Joliet Township HSD 204

FGM Architects, Inc.
Mt. Vernon High School
Mt. Vernon Township HSD 201

ARCON Associates, Inc.
Schrum Memorial Middle School
Hoover-Schrum Memorial SD 157


Criteria considered by the judges included: program/challenge met; how the facility meets 21st century education environmental needs; design; unique energy efficiency or green features; and safety (including passive security design and traffic patterns). To be eligible, construction projects had to be completed in time for occupancy with the start of the 2016-2017 school year.

All of this year’s entries will be added to IASB’s School Design Database. The searchable online database is available for use by IASB member districts and their architectural firms. The file is updated each year after the competition and contains more than 500 Illinois public school design projects.




Sunday, October 2, 2016

Online Learning Center reopens

Three courses are now available at IASB’s revamped and re-opened Online Learning Center and are part of mandatory board member training, as required by state law:
  • Open Meetings Act Training
  • Professional Development Leadership Training (PDLT) and Performance Evaluation Reform Act (PERA) Training for School Board Members
  • Performance Evaluation Reform Act Training (stand-alone version)

The Open Meetings Act Training focuses on the law as it applies to school board meetings and members. This course is required within 90 days of taking the oath of office.

Professional Development Leadership Training (PDLT) and Performance Evaluation Reform Act (PERA) Training for School Board Members covers education and labor law, financial oversight, and fiduciary responsibilities; Performance Evaluation Reform Act (PERA) Training is also included. Board members are required to take PDLT within the first year of their first term.

IASB also offers a stand-alone PERA Training for those select members that need to meet this requirement only. PERA is required for board members prior to voting on a dismissal based on an "optional alternative evaluation dismissal process for PERA evaluations."

Participants take the courses in an online format that features targeted information followed by short, scenario-based question-and-answer quizzes to ensure test-takers’ understanding of the material. At the conclusion of the course, participants will be prompted to print a certificate of completion and submit it to their district office.

Development of additional courses is underway. The Online Learning Center features new content authoring software, which integrates with IASB’s recently rolled-out database management system.

There is a fee for each course. The Online Learning Center can be accessed by clicking the yellow “MY ACCOUNT” button on the Association homepage, iasb.com.