Volume 24, No. 6 | Wednesday December 17, 2020
News from the December 15, 2020 meeting
Public Health Monitoring Continues
Superintendent Dr. Larry Hewitt shared the most recent update to the Northfield Township COVID-19 Elementary School Local Public Health Dashboard at the regular board meeting Tuesday, Dec. 15. The Weekly Test Positivity Rate dipped slightly to the ‘moderate’ community transmission category for the week ending December 5.
 
The dashboard tracks cases and test positivity rates within three regions and updates weekly: Region 10 of Suburban Cook County; Northfield Township; and 14 adjacent ZIP codes to Northfield Township.
 
While there is some decrease in test positivity rates, it is still high, as are the number of cases per 100,000, Dr. Hewitt said. 

In-Person Learning Planned to Restart Jan. 19 
“The decision has been made to return to in-person learning on Jan. 19. That has not changed. But just like at the beginning of the school year, we don’t know how long we will be able to stay in-person. We have mitigation plans in place as we prepare to welcome students back on the 19th,” Dr. Hewitt said. The goal is to be in-person for the remainder of the school year.
 
For the second semester, the net increase of in-person students is 48 in elementary grades K-5 and 17 students in grades 6-8 at the junior high. The district plans to restart the health certification process for in-person students shortly after winter break so the district has accurate data on students’ and staff members’ health status prior to returning to the school campuses. The specific date and details will be shared with parents via email.
2021-22 Calendar Aligns With High School
The 2021-22 school year calendar approved by the Board of Education follows the typical pattern of previous years, with one exception. Teachers typically return on the third Monday in August for two institute days, with students starting the school year on Wednesday. Next year, the first Teacher Institute Day is Tuesday, August 17 and the first day for students is on Thursday, August 19.
 
Parent/teacher conferences, school improvement planning days, and state holidays remain the same as the current calendar, except that Casimir Pulaski, March 7, 2022, becomes a student attendance day. The tentative last day of school is on Wednesday, June 1, 2022.
 
District Finances
District Local Revenues
Tied to Inflation
Every December, the process to collect the majority of revenues that fund the district’s operating budget begins with a tax levy request. Local property tax revenues fund 86% of the district’s operating budget.

The tax levy is the total amount the district requests from the county in local property tax revenue. The total amount is limited by law to the rate of inflation and new property development. The inflation rate, known as the Consumer Price Index, is a measure of price changes in consumer goods and services set by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. This year’s CPI of 2.3% is 0.4% higher than last year.

Chief School Business Official Jessica Donato said that because new property growth is unknown at the time the levy is filed, the district overestimates its value in order to capture all potential revenues. This allows the district to prepare for future unknown expenses such as insurance premium increases, unfunded mandates, maintenance and repair of facilities, increased enrollment, or changes in state funding, to name a few.

The Board of Education approved the levy request of $39 million at the Dec. 15 meeting. Mrs. Donato predicts the tax extension, how much the district will actually receive, will be about $38.5 million, which is a 3.63% increase from the prior-year tax extension. The tax rate, which is used to calculate an individual’s property tax bills, is based on the district’s total value of property in the district.
District Happenings
Help District 28 Elementary Schools Reach $28,000 Goal!
During this holiday season, the elementary schools in District 28 are working together to bring food, dignity, and hope to our neighbors across Cook County who are experiencing hunger. Please join us in a virtual food drive running through January 15th! Every $1 can help provide 3 meals! Your support makes an immediate impact to take hunger off the table. Our goal is to raise $28,000 for the Greater Chicago Food Depository! We can do this!
Want to Know More?
Livestream/Archive Video
The Board of Education meetings are live-streamed on the District 28's YouTube Channel. The live streams are also archived for later viewing.

Next Meeting is on January 26
The Board of Education meetings will be held virtually until further notice in order to limit visitors within the school buildings and maintain cleaning protocols. The public is invited to listen to the audio stream of the meeting on the district's YouTube Channel. The next regular meeting of the Board of Education is scheduled for 7 p.m. on January 26.