Volume 10, Issue 15 | Friday, April 12, 2019
Throughout this publication, you will see the following color-coded dots accompanying each article. They represent which strategic goal the article addresses.

Focusing on Learning Connecting the Community Securing the Future

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District 58 Board hires superintendent; voters elect Board members
The District 58 Board of Education appointed Dr. Kevin Russell to serve as District 58's next superintendent during a special meeting on April 1. Dr. Russell is a veteran educator with more than 20 years of experience as a teacher and administrator. He is currently the superintendent of Chicago Ridge School District 127.5. He started his career as a social studies teacher at O'Neill Middle School in District 58.

During the April 2 election day, voters elected incumbent Kirat Doshi and newcomers Emily Hanus and Steven Olczyk to serve four-year Board member terms and newcomer Tracy Weiner to serve an unexpired two-year Board term. District 58 will seat the new Board members during a reorganization meeting on Thursday, April 25. They will join Greg Harris, Darren Hughes and Jill Samonte on the Board of Education.
DGEEA announces 2019 District 58 Teachers of the Year
The Downers Grove Elementary Education Association (DGEEA) announced Traci Leach and Karen Ryan as the 2019 District 58 Teachers of the Year on Wednesday, April 10.

Traci Leach is an English Language Learner teacher at Kingsley School. Karen Ryan is a resource teacher at Indian Trail.

Both schools held faculty meetings Wednesday morning, during which they surprised Mrs. Leach and Mrs. Ryan with the announcement.

Pictured above: Traci Leach and family (left) and Karen Ryan with DGEEA reps (right)
District 58 PTAs invite community to Author Fest events
Five prominent children's authors – Brianna DuMont, Jill Esbaum, Liesl Shurtliff, Patricia Toht and Allan Woodrow – will visit several District 58 elementary classrooms during Author Fest on April 24-26.

The fest, hosted by the District 58 PTA, will conclude with a special event and book signing on Friday, April 26. This event is open to the public. The authors will give a talk at Anderson's Bookshop in Downers Grove from 5:45-6:45 p.m., followed by a book signing from 6:45-8 p.m. at the Downers Grove Public Library. Please bring pre-purchased books to the signing.  Learn more!
2019-20 registration open
Online registration for the 2019-20 school year is open now through Friday, May 17. The District emailed current parents registration information, including a personalized registration "snapcode" for each student, on April 9. Learn more.
Sixth Grade Parent Night
Current sixth grade parents are invited to their child's future middle school to learn more about middle school curriculum and expectations. The sixth grade parent night will take place on Tuesday, April 23 from 7-8:30 p.m. at Herrick and on Tuesday, May 7 from 7-8:30 p.m. at O'Neill. More information will be emailed on Monday, April 15.
Last chance: Sign up for summer school
Parents are invited to enroll their child in District 58 Summer School and Extended School Year programs now through Friday, April 12.

District 58 expands pesticide notification process
District 58 uses Integrated Pest Management (IPM), a program that combines preventive techniques, non-chemical pest control methods, and the appropriate use of pesticides with a preference for products that are the least harmful to human health and the environment. 
In previous years, during the registration process, District 58 asked parents to “opt in” to receive pesticide notifications. Starting next school year, District 58 will notify  all parents  at least 48 hours prior to any pesticide applications on school property. If there is an immediate threat to health or property that requires treatment before notification can be sent, the District will send a notification as soon as possible.
Herrick and O'Neill students receive art awards from DGJWC
The Downers Grove Junior Woman’s Club recently recognized eight District 58 middle school students during its annual Junior High Art Contest award ceremony. Congratulations to:

  • First Place: Michaela R., Herrick eighth grader
  • Second Place:  Gianna C., Herrick seventh grader; Kayla N., O’Neill eighth grader
  • Third Place: Dana K., Herrick seventh grader; Emma P., Herrick eighth grader
  • Honorable Mentions: Gina L., Herrick seventh grader; Lores J., Herrick eighth grader; and Audrey L., Herrick eighth grader

El Sierra, Kingsley and Highland host Family Math Nights
Katie Hurckes, a District 58 teacher and parent, earned an Education Foundation grant this school year that supported Family Math and Science Nights at El Sierra and Kingsley schools.

Working with the Highland PTA, she also co-coordinated a similar PTA Family Math and Science Night at Highland School. At each event, students enjoyed exploring math and science activities with their parents, siblings and other loved ones!

Grove Children's Preschool surprises librarian with books
Grove Children's Preschoolers celebrated Martin Luther King, Jr.'s birthday in January. As part of the celebration, they learned a little bit about King and the message of kindness he spread. Preschool teachers challenged the students to think of ways they can be kind. The students decided that they wanted to show kindness to their teacher librarian, Mrs. Gwen Box, by collecting and donating 245 early childhood books to her library!

The students recently surprised Mrs. Box with their donation. Watch this short video to see the surprise!
The Fairmount Student Council, PTA and Principal Lisa Niforatos shared their school's recent accomplishments during the April Board meeting. View this short video to learn how a new group at Fairmount transformed the school's culture!
The Hillcrest fifth grade "Green Team" made this very creative video to share how students can preserve the environment. They showed the video during their all school assembly.
English learners at Highland welcomed a special guest reader! A Highland mom visited and read the picture book, “Nadie Como Tú” in Spanish to the students, while her children read the English version of the same book! Learn more.
During a recent social-emotional learning lesson, Henry Puffer kindergarteners had very insightful conversations on the importance of being kind with words and actions.
Lester first graders learned how to use Clips and created their own Clips videos about what they're learning in English-language arts! Instructional coach Nicole Ring partnered with teacher Pat Szczurek on this activity.
Check out Pierce Downer's new sensory hallway!

Want to learn more? We'll soon share a video highlighting the benefits of Pierce Downer's brand new sensory hallway and room!
Belle Aire kindergarteners conducted research using the PebbleGo tool. "They worked so hard and stayed focused," said instructional coach Jenny Lehotsky.
Kingsley families raised about $500 to support their school during McTeacher Night at McDonald's. The kids loved being served food by their teachers!
Children's author and former NFL player Israel Idonije visited Whittier and shared a powerful message on the importance of body positivity and embracing your unique talents.
April Board Briefs
The Board of Education held a special meeting on Monday, April 1 to appoint Dr. Kevin Russell to the superintendent position, effective July 1, 2019. Learn more.

The Board held a regular business meeting on Monday, April 8. The meeting included a spotlight on the Health and Wellness Committee, among other topics. View the Board Briefs.

Board of Education: Looking ahead
District 58 will seat its newly-elected Board members Kirat Doshi, Emily Hanus, Steve Olczyk and Tracy Weiner during a reorganization meeting on Thursday, April 25 at 5 p.m. at the Longfellow Center.

The Board will host a Staff Meet and Greet on Monday, April 29 at 6:15 p.m. at Pierce Downer. Immediately afterward, at 7 p.m., the Board will hold a Budget Workshop. The agenda will be posted on April 26.
Week of April 15
Illinois Assessment of Readiness testing continues

Monday, April 15
7 p.m.: South Elementary Band Concert at O'Neill

Tuesday, April 16
6:30 p.m.: Board Tour and PTA Visit at Whittier
7 p.m.: North 4th Grade Orchestra and Chamber Strings Concert at Herrick

Wednesday, April 17
9 a.m.: Kindergarten Roundup at Hillcrest
3:45 p.m.: Legislative Committee Meeting at the ASC

Friday, April 19
No School

Tuesday, April 23
8-10:30 a.m.: New Board Member Orientation at the ASC
7-8:30 p.m.: Sixth Grade Parent Night at Herrick
April 24-26

Wednesday, April 24
7-8:30 p.m.: Downers Grove Children's Choir Concert at Herrick

Thursday, April 25
5 p.m.: Board Reorganization Meeting at Longfellow
7-8 p.m.: Herrick Chamber Ensembles Concert at Herrick
7-8 p.m.: South 4th Grade and Chamber Strings Concert at O'Neill

Monday, April 29
6:15 p.m.: Staff/Board Meet and Greet at Pierce Downer
7 p.m.: Board Budget Workshop at Pierce Downer

Tuesday, April 30
7 a.m.: Policy Committee Meeting at the ASC
3:45-5:30 p.m.: Distinguished Service Awards Ceremony at Ashyana Banquets
Downers Grove Grade School District 58, 1860 63rd St., Downers Grove, IL 60516
Community Relations Office: 630-719-5805 I mhewitt@dg58.org | www.dg58.org