Board Meeting Highlights - February 2016

Complete Board Packet

Below are highlights from the District 39 Board of Education meeting on February 22, 2016.


Board Committee Reports

  • School Finance/Facility Development – Alice Schaff reported - Discussion included bids for summer construction for the Harper roof and library/media/technology center renovations at WJHS and Harper; update on sustainability audit; and roof drain issue at Harper, which is being corrected. The Village will be reconstructing Locust Road this summer. Technology infrastructure work will be completed in the next three weeks. A new law requires carbon monoxide detectors in all buildings; the District will phase in the installation. 
  • Insurance Advisory Committee – Mark Steen reported – Blue Cross Blue Shield plans were reviewed and a premium increase is expected for the next plan year. D39 plans were compared to educational industry standards. Dental, group life and disability, and flex plans were also reviewed. Open enrollment for 2016 and the D39 wellness programs were discussed.
  • Educational Foundation – Tracy Kearney reported – Trivia night was successful and fundraising goals were met. Science Olympiad hosted open house at WJHS. Science Olympiad teams have done well in competition – the varsity team placed 5th out of 23 and JV placed 7th out of 18 at Grayslake event. Regional competition is March 12th and State competition is April 16th-17th. Other Foundation events coming up are Math in the Real World on March 10th featuring Rock House owner Chris Karabas, and the Distinguished Citizen Award honoring D39 alum Keating Crown on April 7th. 



Legislative Update - Kimberly Alcantara

Governor’s State of the State address included his plan to reduce pension costs with a reduction in the end of career salary bump and reallocation of pension costs to local employers for salaries in excess of $180,000. The Governor is also promoting legislation that would eliminate unfunded school mandates. 


Announcements from the Superintendent

  • DAR Essay Contest winners were recognized. First place winners read their essays – Gavin Fountain in 7th grade and Kathy Pickens in 8th grade.
  • The League of Women Voters annual Student Government program culminated with the Mock Board meeting prior to the regular Board of Education Meeting. There was a great deal of planning, excellent presentations from iPads, and thoughtful consideration as the student “Board” debated this year’s topic of sustainability and school gardens. 
  • Melanie Horowitz is retiring after thirteen years of dedicated service to D39. Melanie served as Central School Principal and then as Administrator for Curriculum & Instruction. The curricular improvements are many and next month Melanie will provide the Board with a “State of the Department” update.
  • Summer Enrichment Program 2016 online registration opened February 9th and 229 students have signed up so far. There is still room in all classes, however popular ones are filling up: Coding Camp, Math Challenge, Rocketry Revisited, Cooking with Math and Creative Cookery. 

FOIA request

Information items 

Strategic Plan Updates

  • Mr. DeMonte, Mrs. Littman, Mrs. Jackson, and Dr. Kick – Library Media Center Renovations – In D39’s ongoing effort to renovate outdated school libraries, this report includes an update on Central School’s experience and considerations regarding improvements at WJHS and Harper. 
  • Scheduling Updates – Response to Board Questions

It is challenging to simultaneously solve all scheduling needs. These reports answer some of the Board questions on Early Release and Start/End Times. The District will now focus on the Master Schedule; scheduling difficulties within the school day must be addressed, before focusing on concerns outside the school day. 

    • Dr. Glowacki, Mrs. Horowitz, and Ms. Lee – Early Release – This report reviewed professional development models used by other districts and responded to Board questions from the January meeting. The report concludes that consideration of an early release model should come after other scheduling factors are prioritized and resolved.
    • Dr. Glowacki and Mrs. Horowitz – Start/End Times of the School Day – This report addressed questions from the January presentation, which proposed three options for potential changes to the start and end times of the school day. This topic will be reconsidered when other scheduling questions are resolved.

Annual Business

  • Ms. Buscemi – Summer 2016 Construction Project Bids - Three separate bid packages were submitted on February 3rd. The first is roof replacement at Harper School; there are seven sections that are to be replaced, following the District’s long-term maintenance plan. The second is the Harper School Library/Media/Technology Center renovation. The third is the Wilmette Junior High Library/Media/Technology Center renovation. A breakdown of the lowest bidders is included. Work would begin in June with construction scheduled for completion in August 2016, before school opens. 

Board Action

The Consent Agenda was approved including the following:

  • Personnel Report dated February 22, 2016 
  • Summer 2016 Harper Roof Construction Project Bid
  • First Reading Revised Board of Education Policies 2:00; 2:10; 2:125; 2:130 and 2:140
  • Second and Final Reading Revised Board of Education Policies 2:105 and 2:110

The Board also approved:

  • Wilmette Junior High Library/Media/Technology Center Renovation
  • Harper Library/Media/Technology Center Renovation

The next meeting of the District 39 Board of Education will be on Monday,
March 14, 2016 at 7:00 PM at the Mikaelian Education Center