May 30, 2017
News from the May Board Meeting
Science Students Share Projects From State Fair
Students Sophia Sparacio and Hayden Gansberg presented the projects that qualified them for the state competition of the Illinois Junior Academy of Science. Pam Mendelson, along with Mark Frye and Amber Paul, help guide the Independent Study students as they develop and research their projects in a semester-long class.

Sixteen  Northbrook Junior High students qualified for the state competition, which was held May 5 and 6 at Northern Illinois University.  At the state competition, Ellie Bosacoma received a Best in Category in Zoology for her project. 

In qualifying for the state competition, students competed among more than 500 entries in 16 categories in regional competition, Mrs. Mendelson said.
Asst. Director for ELS/Student Services A Familiar Face
Nora Geraghty will step over from Northern Suburban Special Education District to become District 28’s Assistant Director of ELS/Student Services, effective July 1.

Ms. Geraghty is a familiar face in District 28, as she has worked since 2007 with the Northern Suburban Special Education District and has been overseeing the Educational Life Skills program in District 28 since 2013. 

Ms. Geraghty’s new role in District 28 will allow the District to launch an in-house program for the 2018-19 school year that will enhance services for our students and support a variety of student needs within the ELS Program. Read more

Board Briefs
Board Approves 11 New Staff Appointments 

The Board of Education approved the appointment of 11 new staff members for the 2017-18 school year.

For Greenbriar, appointments include: Laura Scott, 4th grade, and Corrie Tucker, 5th grade.

For Northbrook Junior High, appointments include: Sarah Cohen, EL teacher; Kyle Pucciarello, Library Media Specialist; Jennifer Ross, Spanish; Mary Seeberg, 8th Grade math; and Melissa Sen, Spanish.

For Westmoor, appointments include: Heather DelGrosso, art; Sia Drakoulis, Early Childhood; Nick Grigolo, 4th grade; Laura Rzewnicki, kindergarten.

Read more about our new team members

Schools to Receive Wifi Upgrade

As schools expand the use of devices in classrooms, the infrastructure that provides wifi Internet must expand as well.

With the help of federal e-rate funds, new data infrastructure equipment will be installed in all four district schools over the next year and a half. The plan calls for replacing existing wireless access points and five switches. Most of the new equipment is replacing equipment as much as 20 years old. Some access points will also be added in school areas that are underserved.

The wiring and data drops are also being upgraded to increase the Internet speed throughout the schools. Work will begin this summer.

The total cost of the project is just under $215,000, with 40 percent of the costs being reimbursed to the District through federal e-rate funds. Total cost to the District is $129,000.

Board Reviews Strategic Planning Process
The Board will review at its June meeting a strategic planning process proposed by the Consortium for Educational Change.

The not-for-profit educational organization specializes in providing support to schools and districts to foster collaborative cultures that bring positive change and continuous improvement in student learning.

The group assists districts in developing and/or refreshing strategic plans with a core group representing three main areas: staff, parents and community members.

The strategic plan should develop goals and strategies to address five areas:

  • Student growth and achievement
  • Learning environment
  • Professional environment
  • Community partnerships
  • Finances and resources.

More details on this process will be shared at the June 27 meeting.

Holiday Parties Will Bypass Food

Following a study of student allergies and practices of controlling food to keep high-risk students safe, the District and PTOs have agreed that food is not essential for classroom parties, which are held three times a year for K-5 students in all three elementary schools.

The number of students with life-threatening allergies is on the rise, making it difficult to provide a safe environment for parties with food. Allergy-free food products that the PTOs tested in the last two years are not favored by students and are also more expensive than traditional party treats.

Parties will center around fun games and activities instead of food.

It's Official! Last Day of School is June 8 
As required by state law, the Board officially canceled the tentative emergency snow dates to end the 2016-17 school year Thursday, June 8. The day will be a full day of classes.

Happenings Around the District

Rail Company Bulldozes Part of Kenyan Sister School

For more than ten years, The PTO Council and District 28 families have supported the Fred Outa Foundation and the schools it funds, the Spurgeons Academy and St. Esther’s Girls High School.

This week, Spurgeons Academy, which serves orphan children in kindergarten through eighth grade with schooling and one meal a day, was devastated when Kenya Railways took a bulldozer to a portion of the school in its fight for land in the Kibera slum.

Fred Outa, a member of parliament, is stopping the destruction but they need help to rebuild. The most immediate need is food for students since the kitchen was demolished. 

Your contribution will go directly to the Fred Outa Foundation  and to  help the vulnerable orphans of  Spurgeons  Academy. 

Make a donation today that can help feed a hungry child tomorrow!

Please visit  for more information and to make a donation.

Tree Dedication to Commemorate Holocaust Connection

Longtime Northbrook residents Sam and Dede Harris have donated a sapling with links to a tree planted in the Terezin Concentration Camp in the Czech Republic to District 28.

The tree will serve as a valuable education tool as part of the seventh-grade Language Arts curriculum, which studies the Holocaust.  Seventh-grade students, along with the Harris’s, members of the Illinois Holocaust Museum, and local officials will participate in a tree dedication ceremony at 8:45 a.m. June 1 at Northbrook Junior High.

Sam Harris attended District 28 schools for kindergarten through eighth grade. He remains an active member of the community today as a member of the Northbrook Rotary Club. The Harris’s are also members of the Illinois Holocaust Museum Board, where they learned the story of the Terezin tree. Dede was so taken by the story that she devoted two years to writing a children’s book, which was recently published (see above). 


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