Leading News Archives February 2018

February 28, 2018
In today’s Leading News, Sycamore CUSD 427 will consider tax anticipation warrants. Quincy SD 172 sees an increase in discipline referrals.  Elgin-based SD U-46 defers a vote on board agreements in the midst of a social media policy contention. Spring Valley CCSD 99 considers changes to its student handbook, including a revision of its leggings policy. Finally in the news, Argenta-Oreana CUSD 1 students “learn to win.”

Sycamore School District 427 Board considers
borrowing additional $2.5 million
Lindsay Gloore, Daily Chronicle, DeKalb, February 27

Increase in discipline issues taxing Quincy Public Schools more
Deborah Gertz Husar, Herald-Whig, Quincy, February 26

U-46 trustees squabble over social media policy
Madhu Krishnamurthy, Daily Herald, Chicago suburbs, February 27

SV school considers rule change on leggings
Brett Herrmann, LaSalle News Tribune, February 24

Learn to win: Argenta-Oreana coach
teaches the class he wishes he'd had
Valerie Wells, Decatur Herald and Review, February 23


February 27, 2018
In today’s Leading News, a roundup of stories about safety and security issues that school districts constantly face, brought to the forefront by the school shooting in Parkland, Florida. School districts manage the ramifications of previous and potential student walk-outs. School districts discuss procedure and policy. Also in the news, NPR talks to teachers about concealed carry in the classroom.

School officials, police encourage reporting of all possible threats
Matt Dutton, Herald-Whig, Quincy, February 22

Aurora students who took part in Florida shooting walkouts
may get detention, be barred from activities
Sarah Freishtat, Aurora Beacon-News, February 23

PPS says no to national student walkouts, students say yes
Pam Adams, Peoria Journal-Star, February 25

This is what it means
when your child's school goes into a 'soft lockdown'
Lexi Cortes, Belleville News-Democrat, February 24

Student safety is top priority
Tammy Wilkinson, Kewanee Star Courier, February 23

Educators Fear And Embrace Calls For Concealed Carry In The Classroom
Annie Wu, NPR, February 26

February 26, 2018
In today’s Leading News, more reaction to the proposal to shift the cost of pensions to school districts. Gurnee SD 56 tests e-leaning days. Canton Union SD 66 partners with local health care providers. The Illinois Department of Natural Resources announces plans to stabilize the mine causing subsidence at Wolf Branch Middle School in Swansea. Finally in the news, the U.S. Supreme Court hears the Illinois-based Janus case, concerning fair-share fees paid by to unions by non-union members for collective bargaining and grievance procedures.

Area School Officials Are Concerned By Governor's Pension Proposal
Chase Cavanaugh, Northern Public Radio, DeKalb, February 22

How Gurnee District 56 turned a 'snow day' into a 'e-learning day'
Doug T. Graham, Daily Herald, Chicago suburbs, February 16

Canton school board hears about partnership
Larry Eskridge, Canton Daily Ledger, February 23

Plan in place to stabilize Swansea school damaged by subsidence,
so rebuilding can begin
Lexi Cortes, Belleville News-Democrat, February 21

Gorsuch deciding vote in key labor union funding case with Illinois roots
AP/Chicago Sun-Times, February 26


February 23, 2018
In Friday’s Leading News, a national report indicates threats of violence against schools have increased since the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Florida, and at least a dozen reports of threats in Illinois have made the news in the past day. Amid talk of proposals that would arm some teachers with guns, some Illinois teachers voice strong disagreement. Meanwhile, school districts are dealing with issues of support and protest related to school violence, and national and Illinois educators stress building relationships and a sense of belonging with troubled students, in addition to security measures, to deal with potential violence. School board members are encouraged to read the Illinois School Board News Blog for more information on these topics.

Threats Against Schools Increase Since Florida Shooting
Doreen Mccallister, NPR, February 22

Illinois educators call Trump’s proposal to arm teachers ‘insanity’
Vikki Ortiz Healy and Robert McCoppin, Chicago Tribune, February 22

District 203 board may take stand in support of protesting Florida students
Suzanne Baker, Naperville Sun, February 22

Suburban students walk out of school to demand stricter gun control
Eric Peterson, Daily Herald, Chicago suburbs, February 22

In wake of Florida school shooting, we should embrace troubled kids,
not push them away, experts say
Ted Gregory and John Keilman, Chicago Tribune, February 18

February 22, 2018
In today’s Leading News, education leaders continue to discuss the proposed pension cost shift. An investigation cites improprieties in CPS elementary school admissions. School officials emphasize the vaping problem in schools. Also in the news, students speak up in Cairo: “As long as we believe in ourselves, we can achieve anything."

Concern pension plan is counterproductive
Raquel Martin, WCIA, Champaign/Springfield, February 20

Rauner's pension shift proposal 'financially devastating' to QPS
Deborah Gertz Husar, Herald-Whig, Quincy, February 17

Thousands of students improperly won seats in CPS schools
 a 'pervasive problem,' inspector general says
Juan Perez Jr., Chicago Tribune, February 20

More teens sneaking vaping devices that look like flash drives, markers
into suburban high schools
Vikki Ortiz Healy, Chicago Tribune, February 20

Cairo high school seniors dispute
Kennedy's remarks about their education
Marilyn Halstead, The Southern Illinoisan, Carbondale, February 21

February 21, 2018
In today’s Leading News, school districts throughout the state emphasize school safety and security: Illinois Valley schools consider the benefits and costs of resource officers, and Streator THSD 40 plans additional security at school facility entrances. Schools have rules about a popular game played by teenagers, but should the game be shut down? A judge has approved further evaluation of the student accused in last year’s shooting in Mattoon High School’s cafeteria. In the Rockford area, school personnel drill on emergency procedures.

A cop with a cost
Brett Herrmann, LaSalle News Tribune, February 20

Streator High buys more detectors
David Giuliani, Ottawa Times, February 20

Hinsdale Central seniors asked to stop 'assassins' game
in wake of Florida school shooting
Kimberly Fornek and Chuck Fieldman, Pioneer Press/The Doings, Hinsdale, February 19

Psychiatrist: Defendant wanted to shoot girl at Mattoon High School
Dave Fopay, Journal Gazette and Times Courier, Charleston and Mattoon, February 16

School shooting survival:
Rockford-area teachers, students being taught to run or fight 
Corina Curry, Rockford Register Star, February 16

February 20, 2018
In today’s Leading News, The Daily Herald looks at what measures school districts are implementing to protect children in their classrooms, and to cope with unsettling threats to student safety Finally in the news, seeing kindergarten curling in Charleston CUSD 1 will make your day better.

Are locks, cameras, drills enough preparation for school shootings?
Madhu Krishnamurthy, Daily Herald, Chicago suburbs, February 19

Probe: Cerro Gordo school threat not credible
Steve Hoffman, News-Gazette, Champaign, February 16

Huntley High School, police determine
reported threat posed no danger to school
Megan Jones, Northwest Herald, February 14

Social media post unsettles schools, police
DuQuoin Call, February 5

'Kindergarten curling' part of games
at Charleston elementary school
Dave Fopay, Journal Gazette and Times Courier, Charleston and Mattoon, February 19

February 16, 2018
In today’s Leading News, more reaction to Governor Bruce Rauner’s budget address and pension shift proposal. THSD 214 superintendent David Schuler is named national superintendent of he year. A strike is averted in West Chicago. Northfield THSD 225 (Glenview) discusses its policy regarding transgender students with concerned parents and students. The state is reportedly planning to expand the college admissions tests offered. Finally in the news, in the wake of the NPR asks, “Is There Any Way for Schools to Prevent Shootings?”

Rauner budget proposal at odds with re-election rhetoric
Monique Garcia, Kim Geiger, and Bill Lukitsch, Chicago Tribune, February 14

District 214's Schuler named national superintendent of the year
Christopher Placek, Daily Herald, Chicago suburbs, February 15

Superintendents worried about Rauner’s pension shift proposal
State Journal-Register, Springfield, February 15

West Chicago High School teachers, board reach deal to avert strike
Katlyn Smith, Daily Herald, Chicago suburbs, February 15

Glenbrook 225 responds to parents' concerns
over transgender student policy
Alexandra Kukulka, Pioneer Press/Glenview Announcements, February 14

State prepares to spend $75M to expand college-admissions testing
Diane Rado, TNS/The State Journal-Register, Springfield, February 15

Is There Any Way For Schools To Prevent Shootings?
Anya Kamanetz, NPR, February 15


February 15, 2018
In today’s Leading News, read reaction to Governor Bruce Rauner’s budget address, including the proposal to shift teacher retirement costs from the state onto local school districts. Also in the news, Community High School District 94 in West Chicago undertakes last-minute negotiations; teachers could strike on Friday.

Old Idea Could Change School Funding Dollars
Dusty Rhodes, WUIS Education Desk, Springfield, February 14

Illinois governor takes aim at pensions, healthcare costs in budget
Karen Pierog, Reuters, February 14

Rauner budget relies on pension cuts,
tax hike he says he ‘was right’ to veto
Tina Sfondeles, Chicago Sun-Times, February 14

Rauner’s budget leans on local schools, state workers
Doug Finke, State Journal-Register, Springfield, January 31

West Chicago High teachers ready to strike Friday if no agreement
Katlyn Smith, Daily Herald, Chicago suburbs, February 13

February 14, 2018
In today’s leading news, a preview of Governor Bruce Rauner’s budget includes a pension shift that would have school districts pay 25 percent of teacher pension costs. Meanwhile, Democratic Senate President John Cullerton says school spending must rise by $350 million. In Decatur, adult education will reconvene. A Peoria charter school has filed breach of contract suits against teachers who did not finish the school year at the school. Finally in the news, students from Adlai E Stevenson HSD 125 work with state legislators to raise the legal age for tobacco and related products.

Rauner's budget will ask local schools to pay millions more toward teachers' retirements
Monique Garcia and Kim Geiger, Chicago Tribune, February 13

Morning Spin: Cullerton throws budget shade at Rauner
ahead of big speech
Chicago Tribune, February 13

Adult education returns to Decatur with partnership
between Richland, Workforce Investment Solutions
Valerie Wells, Decatur Herald and Review, February 12

Quest Charter Academy sues teachers for quitting early
Pam Adams, Peoria Journal-Star, February 8

Stevenson High School students work behind scenes
on state bill increasing tobacco age
Karen Ann Cullotta, Pioneer Press/Buffalo Grove Countryside, February 12


February 13, 2018
In today’s Leading News, Kankakee SD 111 and Crete-Monee CUSD 201U reach out to resolve an overheated rivalry. Scholarships are available for minority students interested in careers in teaching. CPS revamps its plan to close three south side high schools this year. The city of DeKalb debates a TIF district. Finally in the news, NPR Illinois’ Education Desk looks at the “unexpected” of the efforts to implement school funding reform.

Meeting helps KHS students mend bridges
John Dykstra, Daily Journal, Kankakee, February 10

Scholarships offered to minority students interested in teaching
State Journal-Register, Springfield, February 10

CPS puts brakes on school closing plan,
will phase out 3 Englewood high schools over 3 years
Juan Perez Jr., Chicago Tribune, February 12

City council a ways away from taking action on TIF
Drew Zimmerman, Daily Chronicle, DeKalb, January 27

ISBE Spars With Unlikely Opponents Over Funding Priorities
Dusty Rhodes, NPR Illinois, Peoria Public Radio, February 13

February 12, 2018
In today’s Leading News, read a few more takes on ISBE’s announcement late last week that it was altering PARCC exams in Illinois. In West Chicago, Community High School District 94 teachers and district will meet again this week, still “far apart” on contract terms. The Pantagaph looks at responses to the timeline for fund disbursement under the new funding formula. Lincoln-area school districts review and share safety protocols. Finally in the news, the Civic Federation budget watchdog group suggests pension changes, sales and service taxes, and closing or consolidating state universities.

Illinois Plans To Part With PARCC
Dusty Rhodes, WUIS Education Desk, Springfield, February 9

District 94 teachers, board remain far apart on salary, benefits
Justin Kmitch, Daily Herald, Chicago suburbs, February 8

School officials hopeful, cautious over promised release of state funding
Julia Evelsizer, The Pantagraph, Bloomington, February 9

Safety response protocol keeps all informed
Jean Ann Miller, The Lincoln Courier, February 5

Morning Spin: Civic Federation calls for taxing retirement income,
maybe closing universities to balance state budget
Monique Garcia, Chicago Tribune, February 9

February 9, 2018
In today’s Leading News, is PARCC as we know it on the way out in Illinois? State universities deal with the impact of outmigration of Illinois students. With the county board out of the equation, the Springfield SD 186 school board aims for a Sangamon County school facility sales tax. Effingham-area legislators and superintendents discuss the school funding formula. Finally in the news, a new program designed to build empathy simulates poverty conditions.

Illinois to remake controversial PARCC exams
as it looks to transform state tests
Diane Rado, Chicago Tribune, February 9

State universities struggle with enrollment as students leave Illinois 
Lenore Sobota, The Southern Illinoisan, Carbondale, February 4

Countywide sales tax for schools might have easier path
Jason Nevel, State Journal-Register, Springfield, February 8

Area legislators criticize school funding bill
Stan Polanski and Dawn Schabbing, Effingham Daily News, February 1

Schools Are Using Poverty Simulations To Build Empathy,
But Do They Work?
Lee V. Gaines, NPR Illinois, February 6

February 8, 2018
In today’s Leading News, Illinois school districts present innovative ideas for career education, improving student focuslife skill building, and teachers learning from, and about, their students.

Mercer students, Aledo police group building 350 Chevy motor
Cala Smoldt, Quad Cities Dispatch-Argus, February 6

Rauner tours Niles West, says it could be 'model'
for tech and career education
Pioneer Press/Skokie News, January 26

Bike desks used to increase student focus at Green Oaks school
Mick Zawislak, Daily Herald, Chicago suburbs, February 3

A Heaping of helping
Life Skills students learn kitchen skills, work ethic in KHS program
Jill Bartelt, Kewanee Star-Courier, February 6

Role reversal for students, teachers at Mundelein-area school
Gilbert R. Boucher II, Daily Herald, Chicago suburbs, February 5


February 7, 2018
In today’s Leading News, ISBE has announced that the additional $350 million for schools will be distributed, under the new finding formula, as soon as April. The U.S. Department of Education aims to delay interventions for racial disparities in special education programs.  A collaboration between Lake Zurich High School and a local manufacturer presents career options to senior students. Abingdon-Avon CUSD 276 is working with Carl Sandburg Community College with the aim offering associates degrees to high school students. Also in the news, NPR looks at a recently released study that examines the ways students in the U.S. learn about slavery.

Education money could flow to school districts in April
Doug Finke, Rockford Register Star, February 6

Government seeks delay of Obama rule on race in special ed
Maria Danilova, AP/Daily Herald, Chicago suburbs, February 5

Manufacturing another career path:
New program to give post-grad alternative to District 95 students
Phil Rockrohr, Pioneer Press/Lake Zurich Courier, February 5

A-Town gives students a chance
to graduate high school with associate of arts
Mitch Prentice, The Register-Mail, Galesburg, February 4

Why Schools Fail To Teach Slavery's 'Hard History'
Cory Turner, NPR, February 4


February 6, 2018
In today’s Leading News, Mt. Prospect SD 57 presents a referendum that would help it “deal with things immediately, before they become big problems." CPS’s new leader started her schooling and her career in CPS classrooms. A program on dinosaurs prompts questions in Effingham. Scott-Morgan CUSD 2, in Bluffs, begins renovation plans for its elementary and junior high school buildings. Finally in the news, challenges facing small and rural schools are discussed in Dongola.

Mount Prospect school officials make case
for tax hike to maintain status quo
Steve Zalusky, Daily Herald, Chicago suburbs, February 3

New CPS boss Janice Jackson understands
the impact violence can have on families
Lauren FitzPatrick, Chicago Sun-Times, February 2

Creationist dinosaur program stirs controversy
Deron Molen, WAND, Decatur, January 29

Board takes steps toward renovations
Samantha McDaniel-Ogletree, Jacksonville Journal-Courier, February 2

Challenges Of Illinois Rural Schools Addressed
Lindsey Rae Vaughan, The Gazette-Democrat, Union County, February 1

February 5, 2018
In today’s Leading News, suspicious FOIA requests are hitting Illinois School Districts. Conversation continues over the use of a comparative religion essay in a School District U-46 (Elgin) class. “Gap year fairs” offer options for high school students. Elmhurst CUSD 205 voices objections to a TIF proposal. Also in the news, website accessibility questions take Zion-Benton THSD 126 board meeting videos off the air.


February 2, 2018
In today’s Leading News, read and listen to NPR Illinois’ report on what comes next for school funding after House and Senate overrides of Governor Bruce Rauner’s amendatory veto. Some llinois school districts are working towards Common Core and possibly away from traditional letter grades. Time and technology move on, prompting Highland CUSD 5 to consider upgrades. Decisions follow discussions at for Elmhurst SD 205 middle schools. Finally in the news, Plano CUSD 88’s Farm Bureau partnership is reaping bushels of benefits.

Veto Override Removes One School Funding Hurdle 
Dusty Rhodes, NPR Illinois, January 31

Will standards-based report cards mean
the end of traditional letter grades?
Jane Michaels, The Doings, Burr Ridge, January 31

Technology that replaced the chalkboard
could cost Highland schools $440,000 to update
Megan Braa, Belleville News-Democrat, January 29

Elmhurst District 205 middle schools to undergo changes
following board vote
Mary Stroka, Suburban Life, January 25

School-farm lease revenue helps schools, residents
Lyle R. Rolfe, Kendall County Now, February 1

February 1, 2018
In today’s Leading News, clearing the way for implementation of the new school funding formula, the Illinois House and Senate voted to override Governor Bruce Rauner’s veto. District 225 considers later start times for high school students. Twelve states, including Illinois, are suffering from flu outbreaks that are closing schools. Also in the news, school officials deal with threats to school safety based on social media posts.

General Assembly overrides Rauner AV of school funding follow-up
Doug Finke, State Journal-Register, Springfield, January 31

District 225 plans to push back Glenbrook North start time
Alexandra Kukulka. Pioneer Press/Glenview News, January

Flu Epidemic Has Closed Schools In At Least 12 States,
And Administrators Say That's Not Normal
Taylor Swaak, Newsweek, January 24

Social-media posts have Mahomet-Seymour parents wary
Ben Zigterman, News-Gazette, Champaign, January 27

Superintendent shuts down rumors about threat to Okawville school
Lexi Cortes, Belleville News-Democrat, January 26


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The links to articles posted here are selected daily from news sources across Illinois, provided as a service to our membership. These links go directly to the original source (print, broadcast, or online media) that originated the article. The purpose of sharing these links is to give readers of this blog a wider perspective on state and local issues impacting public education. IASB neither endorses nor verifies the content.

Leading News Archives
January 2018
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