Volume 24, No. 10 | Friday April 30, 2021
News from the April 27, 2021 meeting
Planning for Next School Year Dependent
on Parent Survey
Planning for the next school year is continuing with a survey of District 28 families. The district needs to know how many students will still require remote learning due to health reasons for 2021-22 in order to determine staffing, class sections, as well as what type of remote learning option is most viable.

Northfield Township school districts are expecting much lower numbers of students in remote learning next year and will meet in May to discuss developing a joint township remote learning academy, said Superintendent Dr. Larry Hewitt. Parents were asked to respond to the survey by May 4.
 
The Illinois State Board of Education is strongly encouraging all students to come to school next year unless they or someone they live with is at increased risk of severe illness as defined by the CDC.
Health Metrics Monitoring Continues
The township and the district continue to monitor COVID-19 cases and student absentee rates as the final month of the school year approaches. The Northfield Township health dashboard shows the weekly cases for Region 10 are still in the “substantial” transmission range, however the weekly positivity rate is in the “moderate” category with 4.7% for the week ending April 17. The dashboard is updated weekly each Wednesday. On April 27, there were three individuals absent due to testing COVID positive.
Academic Progress Comparable to Previous Years
Students’ academic progress has been top-of-mind for parents and educators alike during this challenging year. The Measures of Academic Progress, a nationally normed assessment, was administered to students in grades 2-8 this fall and winter. MAP provides helpful information for parents, learning strengths and weaknesses for teachers, and overall trends for the district.
 
The results of winter MAP show performance of remote classrooms and in-person classrooms to be comparable. Current assessment performance is in line with past data despite this year’s unusual circumstances, said Assistant Superintendent Dr. Kris Raitzer. MAP is an adaptive assessment and compares performance to national norms rather than grade-level proficiency. District 28 students continue to perform at a very high level, Dr. Raitzer said.
 
Students in grades 3-8 are currently participating in the Illinois Assessment of Readiness. IAR provides results to parents and educators on grade-level content. This year there is an expanded testing window so the date when results will be shared with school districts and parents has not yet been set by the state. “I am so proud of the effort of our teachers and kids and the support of our families with all the challenges we have faced,” said Dr. Raitzer. “Everyone has done an amazing job providing consistency and care for students so they could have a successful school year.”
 
Ensuring Student Success in 2021-22
The district will be taking several steps to ensure continued student progress next year, including:
  •  A “Getting Ready Camp” will be taught by classroom teachers during the three weeks before the school year begins in July and August, Dr. Raitzer said. Students who have received additional academic support in the classroom this year and may benefit from some additional summer support to get ready for the new school year will be invited to participate.
  • Reading specialists and math interventionists will return to their regular roles at elementary schools next year to support students and teachers. This year, they served as classroom teachers to help accommodate the smaller classes required for 6-foot distancing.
  • Revised math screening assessments in grades 6-8 and newly created screening assessments in grades 1-5 will be administered at the beginning of the school year to measure student competencies and help teachers detect potential learning gaps.
 
In brief
School Building Improvements on Tap For Summer
Contracts were awarded for building improvements at all four schools. Greenbriar School and Northbrook Junior High will have portions of their roofs replaced and will receive upgrades to their HVAC building automation systems. Each of the four schools will receive several security system enhancements and Northbrook Junior High will also get a new PA system.

Three educators hired for 2021-22
Two math teachers for Northbrook Junior High and an Instructional Coach for Meadowbrook were hired for the next school year. The new educators are: Eric DeMattia, 8th Grade Math; Andrew Treiber, 7th Grade Math and Brigette Hurst, Meadowbrook Instructional Facilitator.
Board Reorganization
New Board Members Seated, Officers Elected
Three new faces and one incumbent took the oath of office and joined the three existing board members to form the next District 28 Board of Education.

Before new members took their seats, Board President Tracy Katz Muhl and Dr. Hewitt recognized the contributions of Tony Forchetti, Michael Gilmore, and Lou Gross, who represented a collective 28 years of experience.

Tony Forchetti served 12 years on the board, while Lou Gross and Michael Gilmore both served eight years. None of the members sought re-election.

“It is hard to say goodbye to our departing members. They each brought an area of personal and professional prowess to their roles,” said Board President Tracy Katz Muhl.
DeShawn Arms, Matthew Cassidy, Shweta Jinkala and incumbent Jennifer Gallinson were elected on April 6 to four-year terms.

The reorganization meeting was held following the April business meeting. By unanimous vote, Tracy Katz Muhl was elected president; Michelle Kohler was elected vice president, and Jennifer Gallinson was elected secretary. The Board also established the regular meeting dates and times for the next two years.
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 May 25
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 May 25