Strategic Plan

Board Highlights are timely recaps of School Board meetings. They are emailed to staff, parents, and interested community members before the official minutes are approved and posted. 


Links to pertinent memos and presentations from the Board packet are highlighted in green. Board packets are posted the day before regularly scheduled Board meetings.


Meeting podcasts, packets, and Board information can be accessed using the links on the left. 

Regular Meeting

Board President, Kendra Wallace, welcomed everyone to the first School Board Meeting of the 2016-2017 year, noting the excitement surrounding the upcoming start of school. 

Superintendent, Trisha Kocanda, welcomed over 190 new students and 17 new staff members to the District. She shared District highlights from the summer, including the over 600 students enrolled in this summer's Adventures in Learning program, and facility work such as the installation of the temporary classrooms at Crow Island School. She recognized District and Hubbard Woods School staff who have worked diligently responding to the stormwater impact at the school. Finally, she expressed how the District is ready to begin a successful school year, aligned with the recently launched Shared Vision.


Matthew Cropper of Cropper GIS and Dr. Jerome McKibbon of McKibbon Demographics discussed the findings of the Demographic Study and Capacity/Utilization Study, both conducted in summer 2016, resulting in a detailed forecast of enrollment and building capacities to house students and programs through 2020. McKibbon noted that home sales are the dominant factor affecting Winnetka's population and District enrollment. It was also discussed that the issue of an imbalance in enrollment at the elementary level would exist regardless of the Board's recent approval of an Extended-Day Kindergarten program beginning in 2017-2018.

This data will be used as the District works to address enrollment patterns at its three elementary schools and to determine the best use of facilities that align with space needs and maintain high-quality educational programming. Cropper GIS will work with the District to analyze and assess potential space utilization strategies. A survey to elicit feedback regarding the Enrollment Balancing Project will be shared with the community in early September.

The District is committed to providing communication for and engaging with the community throughout the Enrollment Balancing Project. To view the website dedicated to updates on the project, click hereThe District will offer informational sessions for those interested in learning more about the Enrollment Balancing Project on Tuesday, September 6 at 1 p.m. and 7 p.m. in The Skokie School Community Room (second floor, east side of building), 520 Glendale Avenue.

Greg Kurr, Chief Financial Officer, shared the Budget Timeline and Budget Philosophy, which includes minimizing contingencies, investing in curriculum, and maintaining appropriate programs and facilities. Financial factors were also presented including property tax levy considerations, federal and state revenues and expenditures, bond redemption and refinancing, and future funding of facility needs. Total Budgeted Revenues for 2015-2016 are $44,609,676. Total Budgeted Expenditures for 2015-2016 are $44,863,354. The Board voted to approve the tentative budget, and establish a public hearing to be held at 7:00 p.m. on September 20, 2016.

Informational Memos

The Winnetka Public Schools have a longstanding commitment to Parent Education programs. Based on data collected from parents in spring 2016, the District is engaging in a coordinated parent education program to align topics of interest with opportunities for learning at the school and District levels.


A summary of the prior year's communication goals and accomplishments were shared along with the 2016-2017 strategic communication efforts.  The District utilizes a calendar to coordinate twelve communication platforms, from electronic newsletters to social media.

On June 9, 2016, the District received notice that Deerfield School District #109 rescinded their petition to withdraw from NSSED.  No action by The Winnetka Public Schools is needed at this time. 

It is anticipated that the enrollment will decrease approximately 2% this school year. Staff is expected to decrease by a total of 2.5 FTE in response to enrollment.

District technology devices were refreshed and infrastructure upgraded over the summer as part of the ongoing maintenance plan.  Upgrades included improved data security features, migration of outdated servers, and greater quality and accessibility to security camera footage.

In accordance with Policy, the District established its Concussion Oversight Team to develop training, awareness, and protocols for coaches, parents and students.  The School Board approved the members later in the evening.

Action Items

The Consent Agenda and following action items were approved:
  1. FY17 Tentative Budget
  2. Concussion Oversight Team

The Complete Board Packet for the August 16, 2016, School Board Meeting, containing all Memos and Presentations, is  here.
Upcoming Regular Meeting Dates

September 20, 2016
October 18, 2016
November 15, 2016
December 13, 2016
January 24, 2017

February 21, 2017
March 21, 2017
April 25, 2017
May 16, 2017
June 7, 2017 
Regular meetings are open to the public and will be held at Crow Island School from September 2016-June 2017. Regular meetings begin at 7:15 p.m. Work sessions are also open to the public and may be scheduled at the discretion of the Board. Discussion topics and times for work sessions will be posted on the District website 24 hours in advance.
The Winnetka Public Schools community empowers every student to flourish in an innovative, experiential environment. We support and challenge all learners to actively engage in continual growth and achievement to make a meaningful difference in the world.  
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