News from CCSD15 Board of Education

March 14, 2019

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Preliminary Student Assignment Plan reviewed by Board of Education

At its March 13 meeting, the Board of Education heard a preliminary review of teacher staffing needs for the 2019-2020 school year.

The review, conducted by both building and district administration, anticipates a need for about 890 full time equivalent (FTE) teaching positions, which is a one-percent increase over the current school year.

The preliminary number of 890 FTE was determined by examining current and projected enrollments against Board of Education class-size targets and state guidelines. Class size targets and guidelines are different for special education, bilingual education and general education classrooms.

There are two main reasons for the suggested increase in FTE for 2019-20. District 15 is enrolling a higher number of students with complex social, emotional and behavioral needs, requiring a lower student-to-staff ratio. Additionally, the district anticipates having more self-contained bilingual classrooms, requiring specialized teaching staff.

Enrollment will continue to be monitored and adjustments will be made between now and the start of the 2019-2019 school year. The final staffing plan will be presented to the Board of Education in October.

District 15 provides abundance of special education services

At its March 13 meeting, the Board of Education heard an overview of special education practices in District 15 from Assistant Superintendent Susan Gehring.

The presentation included a historical overview of special education from both a national and local perspective, and provided information on the specialized programs offered in District 15.

District 15 does not participate in a special education co-op like many neighboring districts. Instead, the district provides its own curriculum and special education practices tailored to the community's needs, allowing D15 to service our special education students in-district at a much higher rate.

Read the full special education presentation online.

Marilynn Smith named next Winston Campus Elementary Principal

At its March 13 meeting, the Board of Education approved the promotion of current Winston Campus Elementary School (WCE) Assistant Principal Marilynn Smith as the school's next principal. Ms. Smith will take over for Principal Andy Tieman, who has requested to return to the classroom as a teacher next school year.

Ms. Smith has served as WCE’s Assistant Principal (AP) for the last two years, and previously served as AP at Gray M. Sanborn School in District 15. During her time as an assistant principal, she emerged as a child-centered leader that puts the needs of students first.

Ms. Smith has been part of the overall school improvement team and has worked to elevate the school’s academic achievement and social emotional focus. Ms. Smith emerged as the top candidate during an extensive interview process involving parents, staff and administration. During the committee interview, it was reported that Ms. Smith is respected by staff and seen as an approachable administrator by the parent community.

Ms. Smith will begin her new role July 1. One of her first tasks will be to find a dynamic assistant principal to partner with.

Board approves Frank C. Whiteley Principal appointment

The Board of Education approved the hiring of Faith Rivera as the next Principal of Frank C. Whiteley Elementary School at its March 13 meeting. Mrs. Rivera will take over for Mr. Michael Scaletta, who will be working as the Assistant Director of Special Education for high incidence programs within the Student Services Department next year.

Mrs. Rivera was selected as the preferred candidate after a multi-step interview process conducted by District 15 administration as well as Frank C. Whiteley staff and parents. She is a seasoned leader who comes to us with 15 years of experience as a principal. Mrs. Rivera is very familiar with District 15, having served as the principal of Virginia Lake Elementary School from 2004 - 2010. For the last nine years, she has been a building leader in neighboring Schaumburg District 54.

As a school administrator, Mrs. Rivera has worked to collaborate with staff to form strong professional learning communities, create learning environments that honor cultural as well as academic diversity, and set high expectations for rigorous outcomes. She begins work at Whiteley School July 1.

National Geographic Geography Bee winners recognized

The Board of Education recognized District 15's National Geographic Geography Bee winners at its March 13 meeting. The National Geographic Geography Bee is an annual competition organized by the National Geographic Society, designed to inspire and reward students' curiosity about the world.

Students from 10,000 schools across the country in grades four through eight competed in the 2019 National Geographic Bee for a chance to win college scholarships and the glory of being the National Geographic Bee Champion.

Congratulations to the school winners and the four students who qualified to advance to the State Geography Bee on March 29!

School-wide winners:

Betsy V., Gray M. Sanborn
Dylan K., Carl Sandburg

Noah H., Stuart R. Paddock

Usman K., Winston Campus Junior High

State qualifiers:

Ziayan K., Central Road

Thomas L., Walter R. Sundling

Chase F., Plum Grove

Rhea M., Marion Jordan

Plum Grove student advances to Scripps National Spelling Bee

The Board of Education congratulated Plum Grove Junior High eighth-grade student, Calvin F., for qualifying for the Scripps National Spelling Bee at its March 13 meeting. Calvin is a two-time national qualifier, two-time district champion and three-time school winner.

He will travel to Washington, D.C. in May to compete in the Scripps National Bee, which will be televised on ESPN. Good luck, Calvin!

The board also congratulated the spelling bee winners from each District 15 school for their accomplishments.

Jacob M., Carl Sandburg Junior High

Tyler F., Central Road School

Avyay K., Frank C. Whiteley School

Joe R., Gray M. Sanborn School

Limi N., Hunting Ridge School

Tanya S., Jane Addams School

Trinity S., Kimball Hill School

Aishvir K., Lincoln School

Avni S., Marion Jordan School

Kabir I., Pleasant Hill School

Calvin F., Plum Grove Junior High

Emma G., Stuart R. Paddock School

Natalie J., Thomas Jefferson School

Anika T., Virginia Lake School

Ali A., Walter R. Sundling Junior High

Manasivini R., Willow Bend School

Tanish M., Winston Campus Elementary

Joseph K., Winston Campus Junior High

Two-ball champions recognized by Board of Education

The Board of Education recognized the 246 students who competed in District 15's annual two-ball competition held in February at the Palatine Park District.

Two-ball is an event where a team of two students have two, one-minute rounds, to compete for different points marked on the basketball court. Students need to pass to their partners after their shots, and move around the court to the different spots.

Two-ball is an exciting and positive event for parents, teachers, administrators and friends of the players. The students put in a lot of time with their intramural coaches to practice their basketball skills.

Congratulations to all of the participants!

Boys' small division winners: Arjun and Nathan, Marion Jordan

Boys' large division winners: Bryson and Sam, Hunting Ridge

Girls' small division winners: Marikate and Holly, Winston Campus Elementary
Girls' large division winners: Avery and Kaelee, Hunting Ridge

John Conyers, Willow Bend Schools share school improvement goals

John G. Conyers Learning Academy (CLA) and Willow Bend Elementary School provided the Board of Education with an update to their School Improvement Plans at its March 13 meeting.

All District 15 schools have been working through a process called "Data Wise," which was developed by the Harvard Graduate School of Education. Data Wise supports educators in using collaborative data inquiry to drive continuous improvement of teaching and learning for all students.

After examining school data, CLA has indicated that social communication is its focus area, and Willow Bend has selected reading comprehension as its area of focus.

The schools developed five-step action plans to address the issues, including adjusting instructional practices and enhancing professional development opportunities.

School Improvement Plan presentations for are available online for CLA and Willow Bend.

Last chance to buy tickets for the one-five Foundation's 529 raffle!

There are only four days left to purchase a ticket for the one-five Foundation's 529 raffle! Use the money to pay off student loans, pay for college tuition, or any other educational expenses you have. Ticket sales will end Sunday, March 17 at noon.

The jackpot is up to $13,000 and will continue to grow with every ticket sold. Buy your ticket before time runs out! The winner's name will be drawn on March 17 at 5:29 p.m. live on the district's Facebook page. The winner will also be notified by email.

If you have questions about the raffle, visit the frequently asked questions (FAQ). Buy your tickets by heading to