Board Highlights are timely recaps of School Board meetings. They are emailed to staff, parents, and interested community members before the official minutes are approved and posted. 


Links to pertinent memos and presentations from the Board packet are highlighted in green. Board packets are posted the day before regularly scheduled Board meetings.


Meeting podcasts, packets, and Board information can be accessed using the links on the left. 

Budget Hearing

CFO, Greg Kurr,  presented the FY17 Budget, reflecting $44,609,676 in revenues and $44,948,803 in expenditures. The budget timelines, assumptions, and individual funds were reviewed. The Budget provides for various curricular initiatives; technology upgrades; planning for 21st Century environmental design along with STEAM and Kindergarten programs; special education services; school building improvements; and other factors. Later in the Meeting, the FY17 Budget was adopted.

Regular Meeting

Board President, Kendra Wallace,  greeted all in attendance. She noted exciting work taking place in the District and encouraged those in attendance to bring friends and neighbors to future Board Meetings.

Superintendent, Trisha Kocanda,  highlighted activities that took place throughout the District during the first few weeks of the 2016-2017 school year and recognized Todd Burleson, Resource Center Director at Hubbard Woods School, who was recently named the 2016 School Librarian of the Year by School Library Journal Kocanda thanked those who shared input regarding the Enrollment Balancing Project via the School Board's recent survey and mentioned that the Board Advisory Committee, comprised of parents, staff, and community members, will begin meeting next week. 


Superintendent, Trisha Kocanda, presented the District's four strategic Annual Goals for 2016-2017: Effective Communication, Experiential Learning, Fiscal Management and Facility Design, and Reaching All Learners. The presentation included an overview of why the goals are important, details on initiatives encompassed throughout each goal area, and a timeline of when progress toward the goals will be reported.

Informational Memos

The school year started with 2 ½ days of teacher Institute days for staff to engage in professional learning.  Sessions focused on the District 36 Shared Vision, evaluations, the Enrollment Balancing Project, teacher collaboration, policy review, and school improvement planning.

2. Staffing & Enrollment Update


A summary of students transferring into and out of District 36 over the past twelve months was shared.  58 students transferred out of the District (16 to local private schools), and 101 students enrolled in the District (26 from local private schools) since September 2015.

The District Improvement Plan will incorporate student growth and achievement goals in the areas of math and reading.  The School Improvement Plans will include one or two goals specific to the District's Shared Vision.  The plans will be presented to the School Board in November.

The School Board approved a Math Program Evaluation following a three year implementation of new math curriculum and materials.  Dr. Miriam Sherin, Northwestern University, and Mr. James Lynn, University of Illinois-Chicago, will present their findings at a special School Board meeting on Monday, October 10, 2016, at 7:00 pm.  There will be a parent follow-up session with Dr. Sherin and Mr. Lynn on Thursday, October 13 at 10 a.m. at Carleton Washburne School's Little Theater. A District communication and evaluation response plan will be shared at the November Board Meeting.

An update on progress made toward addressing the District's imbalance in enrollment was shared, including meetings with staff, community members, and local realtors that have taken place since the August 2016 Board Meeting.  The Advisory Committee was also announced.  

During the summer of 2016, significant life safety facility improvement projects took place at Hubbard Woods School.  This work included roof repair, which was complicated by severe rain storms.  As a result, there was considerable unanticipated damage at the school.  At Crow Island School, two temporary classrooms were installed as planned.  Other updates were shared as well.

VS America, a furniture manufacturer located in Germany, proposed to donate new classroom furniture for the kindergarten to 4th grade classrooms at Crow Island. Additionally, the company offered to restore the original historic furniture at the school. The Board will vote on this topic in October.

The Policy Subcommittee reviewed a number of School Board policies and provided recommendations for updates. A 2nd Read of Policies and vote to adopt the recommendations will occur at the October 18, 2016, Board Meeting.

To ensure continued best practice in school safety, the District collaborated with the
Winnetka Police and Fire Departments to update its Emergency Preparedness Plan over the course of last year.  The updated plan will be shared with staff this fall, and the Fire and Police Departments will lead comprehensive trainings at all schools.

Action Items

The Consent Agenda and following action items were approved:
  1. FY17 Final Budget
  2. Memorandum of Understanding
  3. Separation Agreement
Other Business

Heat Relief Discussion
CFO, Greg Kurr, provided an overview of current practices that are being utilized to provide heat relief in schools and shared potential considerations pertaining to future heat relief efforts in the District. The Board asked Kurr to develop a continuum of air-conditioning options with engineers and architects in order to further evaluate potential solutions to address this topic.

The Complete Board Packet for the September 20, 2016, School Board Meeting, containing all Memos and Presentations, is  here.
Upcoming Regular Meeting Dates

October 18, 2016
November 15, 2016
December 13, 2016
January 24, 2017

February 21, 2017
March 21, 2017
April 25, 2017
May 16, 2017
June 7, 2017 
Regular meetings are open to the public and will be held at Crow Island School through June 2017. Regular meetings begin at 7:15 p.m. Work sessions are also open to the public and may be scheduled at the discretion of the Board. Discussion topics and times for work sessions will be posted on the District website 24 hours in advance.
The Winnetka Public Schools community empowers every student to flourish in an innovative, experiential environment. We support and challenge all learners to actively engage in continual growth and achievement to make a meaningful difference in the world.  
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