Dear District 86 Community,
 
During the past eight months, our Math Pathways Team, which is composed of the department chairs for math, building-level administrators, and individuals who teach all levels and courses of math at Hinsdale Central and Hinsdale South, has been working on the alignment of the district’s math curriculum. This work has included:

  • Discussing what we want to see math learners acquire and experience during their time in the district.
  • Conducting a pre-decisional SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats) analysis of the district's current math programs. 
  • Developing a mission statement and program goals that are aligned with the district's strategic plan.
  • Researching and investigating course and pathway options. 
  • Getting feedback from math teachers, counseling and special education departments, the Parent-Teacher Advisory Committee, the Principal-Student Advisory Council and the district's feeder schools.

After completing a comprehensive review and analysis of the research, data and feedback they have been collecting since January, the members of the Math Pathways Team are unanimously recommending to the board of education that District 86 begin phasing the implementation of an integrated math pathway into core courses starting in the fall of 2022. This recommendation will be presented to the board during its meeting on Oct. 15.  
 
Unlike a traditional pathway, which separates content into individual courses (e.g., Algebra 1, Geometry, Algebra 2), an integrated pathway weaves algebra, geometry and statistics into all of its courses, and emphasizes the connection, understanding and retention of the content that is being studied. You can access a frequently asked questions (FAQ) document about the team’s recommendation by visiting https://bit.ly/3iFp8Jn
 
We recognize that members of our community may have questions or want to learn more about the recommended transition to an integrated math pathway. With this in mind, we will be hosting virtual community forums on Sept. 24 from 12:30 p.m. to 2 p.m. and Sept. 28 from 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. During these forums, which the general public will be able to attend via a web conferencing platform called Webex, members of the Math Pathways Team will give a presentation about their work and recommendation. There will also be an opportunity for attendees to submit questions that will be posed to the team by a moderator. Since these events are meant to be learning sessions, the presentation and questions will be focused on helping people better understand and prepare for the move to an integrated pathway versus engaging in a discussion about whether to pursue or proceed with the recommendation.
 
We will be utilizing Google Forms that people can use to submit questions in advance of the forums. You can access the form for the session on Sept. 24 by visiting https://forms.gle/cjVE2xzYFf4boBQu8 (the form for the session on Sept. 28 will be shared closer to the day of the event). We will use these questions to help create our presentation and ensure that we address key topics, issues or concerns during the two events. We also plan to record both forums, and will use various communication tools and resources (email, website and social media) to share the links to the videos.  

We hope that you can join us for the forums on Sept. 24 and 28, and will provide web conferencing links for both events next week. If you are unable to attend, but still have questions or need more information after reviewing the FAQ and/or viewing the videos of the sessions, we encourage you to please contact our math department chairs – Kerin Sancken from Hinsdale South (ksancken@hinsdale86.org) and Kurt Vonnahme from Hinsdale Central (kvonnahm@hinsdale86.org).
 
Thank you very much for your time and attention to this message, and for your continued support of our schools and the students we serve.

Sincerely,
Dr. Chris Covino
Assistant Superintendent for
Academics
Eric Martzolf
Assistant Principal
Hinsdale South
Kerin Sancken
Math Department Chair
Hinsdale South
Kurt Vonnahme 
Math Department Chair
Hinsdale Central