December 16, 2020
D220 to offer families choice to participate in Hybrid or Distance Learning starting Jan. 19
At the Dec. 15 Board of Education meeting, Dr. Harris shared that Barrington 220 families will have the choice to participate in a Hybrid mode or Distance Learning beginning Tuesday, January 19. The decision was made after receiving new information from public health officials which indicates that it is safe for students to return to a Hybrid mode if school districts continue to implement the following five CDC mitigation strategies with fidelity: 

  • Consistent and correct use of masks
  • Social distancing to the largest extent possible
  • Hand hygiene and respiratory etiquette
  • Cleaning and disinfection
  • Contact tracing in collaboration with local health department

The date of Tuesday, January 19 was chosen for the following reasons: to allow for mitigation time recommended after winter break due to travel and family gatherings, as well as time for operational transitions related to transportation, food service, and staffing.

Over the past several weeks school principals and district leaders have been working to improve the Hybrid plans at each level. Please read the information below to learn more about each plan.
Elementary Hybrid 2.0
In the elementary Hybrid 2.0 plan students would attend school in-person five days a week, for 2.5 hours each day. Those 2.5 hours would focus on literacy, math and social emotional learning. Students would still be divided into two groups, "Group A" and Group B". Group A would attend in-person instruction in the mornings and Group B would attend in-person instruction in the afternoons. You can view the schedule in the image below. 
Elementary families who wish to continue with Distance Learning will be placed in full remote classrooms and students will continue following their current learning schedule, which includes synchronous and asynchronous instruction.

All elementary families will be sent a questionnaire tonight asking them to select if their student will participate in Hybrid 2.0 or Distance Learning for the spring semester. In addition, they will be asked to indicate whether or not their student will be using district provided transportation. Please complete this questionnaire by 11:59 pm on Sunday, December 20.

In addition, all elementary principals will be holding virtual meetings this evening to explain more details about the Hybrid and Distance Learning options. If you did not receive information about this meeting, please contact your principal.
Middle and High School Hybrid 2.0
In the middle and high school Hybrid 2.0 plans students would remain in two groups, "Group A" and "Group B". However, it would include Wednesdays as an additional in-person instruction day. For example, one week Group A would be in person all day Monday-Wednesday, while Group B would be in person all day Thursday-Friday. The following week Group A would be in person Monday-Tuesday and Group B would be in person Wednesday-Friday. Students who choose to continue Distance Learning would continue to follow the schedule they are currently following, as teachers will be providing concurrent (simultaneous) instruction to students who are remote and in person.

*All middle and high school families will receive a communication this week which will show whether they selected Hybrid or Distance Learning back in October. Families who wish to change their selection for January will have to make the change in Infinite Campus. The communication will explain how to do this. A second communication will be sent out after winter break regarding transportation for middle and high school students.
4 Requests for ALL D220 families
  • If your family is planning to participate in the Hybrid mode beginning in January and is not planning to use district provided transportation, please opt out of it. This will allow the district to reduce costs and efficiently operate its buses.

  • Please continue to follow all proper health protocols over the next several weeks, including wearing a mask, washing your hands and watching your distance.

  • Many parents have asked how they can help during this difficult time. The district would encourage you to consider applying to be a substitute teacher or bus driver due to current shortages.
Social emotional support for students over winter break
At the Dec. 15 Board meeting, administrators from the district's Department of Student Services and Support shared that students who need support over winter break can connect with staff from Barrington Youth & Family Services (BYFS) through the META app or by contacting BYFS.
Sunny Hill teacher recognized for efforts on behalf of rotary club
In his superintendent report at the Dec. 15 Board meeting Dr. Harris recognized Lori Ford, an Enrichment Instructional Specialist at Sunny Hill Elementary, for her work with the Barrington Breakfast Rotary Club. In 2020 Lori worked with the club to provide bluetooth compatible keyboards to Sunny Hill students in grades 3-5 in order to better support them during Distance Learning. In addition, each year Lori helps organize local college visits for students, which the Rotary Club funds. Every December she also helps organize the rotary's "Make a Wish" program, which provides holiday gifts to Sunny Hill families.
Board approves 2020 tax levy request
At its Dec. 15 meeting, the Board gave final approval to its share of the local property tax rate for 2020. Barrington 220 collects property taxes from Kane, Lake, Cook and McHenry Counties, and property taxes account for more than 80% of the district's annual operating revenues. Based on CPI tax cap limits and capturing new construction in the tax base, the district expects to receive an overall 2.5% tax increase compared to last year, however it is common for school districts to request more than expected in case new construction in the tax base is larger than anticipated. For this reason, Barrington 220 has requested a 4.4% increase to ensure new construction is taxed fairly for all taxpayers. The actual increase will not exceed CPI plus the amount associated with actual new construction. Based upon projections, excluding bond and interest, the total expected tax revenue for 2020 is $129,637,470.
Board approves kindergarten enrichment fee for 2021-2022 school year
At its Dec. 15 meeting, the Board approved the Kindergarten Enrichment fee for the 2021-2022 school year. The fee for the 2021-22 school year will be $3,724. The fee for the current school year is $3,640, however due to the pandemic the district has not been able to run the enrichment program so far this year and therefore it has not charged the fee. The fee adjustment for the 2021-2022 school year is based off the Consumer Price Index (CPI) of 2.3%. The Kindergarten Enrichment Program allows students to attend class for an entire school day, instead of the standard half day. In addition to lessons in the standard academic areas, the full day includes lunch, recess, enrichment activities and play-based learning.
Board expects to name new superintendent in early 2021
In her report at the Dec. 15 Board meeting, Board President Penny Kazmier announced that over the past couple of weeks the Board interviewed candidates for the district's superintendent search. The new superintendent is expected to be named in early 2021 and will begin work on July 1, 2021.

In October and November the Board worked with search firm School Exec Connect to conduct an online questionnaire and virtual forums with stakeholders in order to develop a New Superintendent Profile. Dr. Harris will be retiring at the end of June after working more than 30 years in public education.
Referendum projects moving along as scheduled
At its Dec. 15 meeting, Board members heard an update on the timeline for the district's referendum projects. The timeline is anticipated to span four years (2020-2024) and it is divided into three phases:

  • Design: time needed to review concepts, produce construction documents, and receive authorization from the Board to release for bidding

  • Bid: time needed for prospective bidders to get drawings, estimate and submit bids for the design, and the construction team to analyze and formulate recommendations for Board approval

  • Build: time needed to award contracts, purchase materials, construct, and once completed, turn over the facility to the school district to occupy. 

BMS-Station and BMS-Prairie have completed the Design phase and are both now moving into the Bid phase. Grove Avenue Elementary is currently in the Design phase and in early 2021 the district will be seeking feedback from parents and Board members about the design work. Work was prioritized at those three buildings in order to eliminate the mobile classrooms as soon as possible.

The presentation also included information about the STEM and sensory room additions at each elementary school. While most elementary buildings have a single proposed design solution, there were two design possibilities that apply to Hough Street and Grove Avenue. These designs are labeled “Option 1”or “Option 2” in the presentation. The Board agreed to select Option 1 for both.
4 Board seats up for election on April 2021 ballot
There will be four school Board seats up for election on the April 6, 2021 consolidated election ballot. School Board members serve a four year term expiring in 2025. Interested candidates must file completed paperwork by Dec. 21. For more information visit the Illinois Association of School Boards (IASB) website.