Woodland D50 News and Information
Oct. 28, 2022
Superintendent Update: Message from Dr. Machak
Dear Woodland Families,
The state of Illinois released the results of the annual Illinois Report Card this week, and I am very happy to report that Woodland schools have earned “Commendable” ratings. This is encouraging news after nearly two years of pandemic disruptions to learning. I am so grateful to our staff, students, and district families for never giving up; the Woodland community showed resolve and resilience through remote learning, quarantines, mask mandates, and extended periods of isolation. Through all of the uncertainty and hardship, our Wildcats continued moving forward whenever and however we could.
We believe that our schools’ Commendable ratings can be directly tied back to some of the extra support and new programming that we put in place to attempt to support our students academically and emotionally during the throes of the pandemic. For example, Woodland added 30-minutes of Social and Emotional Learning to the daily school schedule to help address the social-emotional needs of our students. This work included teaching relationship building skills to help with feelings of isolation and giving students the tools they need to handle big emotions and conflict. Woodland also developed and implemented new Winter Break and Spring Break assistance programs to offer additional academic support to students who needed it, and expanded our Summer School program by offering tuition-free participation for all Woodland students in the summer of 2021. These program expansions were made possible with support from the Woodland D50 Board of Education and federal ESSER funding through the CARES Act. This emergency federal funding also allowed us to hire additional social workers and paraprofessionals at each school.
While the Illinois Report Card shows all of our schools trending in the right direction, we know our work is not finished. The Report Card data, along with our internal assessments such as the Measures of Academic Progress, shine a light on areas of curricular strength at each school and grade level as well as opportunities for growth related to student learning.
We started the 2022-2023 school year with a number of new student support systems in place: we are training a cadre of parent mentors to support literacy in our Primary and Elementary classrooms in partnership with the Lake County Regional Office of Education; we are offering a new Core Academic Support program at Woodland Middle School to provide real-time academic assistance in math and English language arts to students throughout the school day; we have trained administrators and teacher leaders on the use of eduClimber, a new online assessment tool that allows educators access to a variety of comprehensive student data in one place; we are also implementing a new, more learner-centered math curriculum in grades K-5.
To learn more about the IL School Report Cards, including information about the new Equity Journey Continuum that has been added to the Report Cards, please visit our website HERE. The COVID pandemic and subsequent world-wide response challenged every one of us to reconsider how we work, how we play, and how we teach and learn. Woodland’s response to these challenges will continue to be Bold, Brave, and Courageous as well.
Our children deserve nothing less.
Wishing you all a wonderful weekend,
Dr. Robert Machak, Superintendent
- Oct. 30 - Deadline for Ordering Spirit Wear through the PTA
- Nov. 4 - School Improvement Planning (SIP) Day, Early Release
- Report Cards will be available in Skyward November 4!
- Nov. 8 - Election Day, District Closed
- Nov. 11 - Veterans Day, School is in Session
- Nov. 17 - November Board of Education Meeting
- Nov. 21 & 22 - Parent Teacher Conferences, Early Release
- Nov. 23, 24 & 25 - District Closed
Woodland D50 Board of Education Highlights
The Woodland School Board of Education Governing meeting was held on Oct. 27, 2022. Please see below for a summary of highlights from the meeting, or we welcome you to watch the meeting HERE.
Thank you for your continued support of Woodland District 50!
Pledge of Allegiance
Woodland Students from the Middle School Positive Culture Club led the Board of Education in saying the Pledge of Allegiance.
Positive School Culture Club
As part of the Superintendent Report, Dr. Machak introduced a new club at Woodland Middle School focused on promoting events, and highlighting student success. The Positive School Culture Club meets every week to think of ways to celebrate their classmates and generate excitement for the great things happening throughout the school. To see photos of the Positive School Culture Club and the weekly highlights, visit our Facebook and Twitter pages.
Positive School Culture Club Presentation.
Illinois Principals Month Recognition
The Board of Education and Administration also recognized Woodland's four school principals with a proclamation from the state to commemorate Illinois Principals Month, and to thank them for their service to our learning community.
Approval of Employment, Resignations and Retirements
The Board of Education approved employment for several key staff members to support our students. This includes a Speech Pathologist at Elementary, and a Kindergarten Teacher at Primary. Woodland will also welcome five new Playground Supervisors, two new Bus Drivers, three Paraprofessionals, a Registered Behavior Tech, a part-time Office Assistant, and a part-time Copy Center Assistant. The Board of Education also approved the hiring of seven new Guest Teachers, two substitute Bus Drivers, and a substitute paraprofessional.
Also under consent agenda, the Board approved the resignations of five support staff members, and one retirement.
Approval of Donations
The Board of Education appreciates the donations from generous supporters to help enhance programming in the district.
Primary - McNeil/Beelow Farms donated pumpkins valued at $66, and Yarc Farms donated pumpkins and other materials for hayrides valued at $50, for the Welcome Roundup parent engagement event.
Elementary - The district received two $20 donations from the Abbvie Blackbaud Giving Fund to be used for student supplies.
Middle - The Middle School received a $6,500 donation from the Woodland PTA to be used for the 8th grade trip at the end of the school year.
The total donation for October 2022 is $6,656.00. That brings the total donation amount for the 2022-2023 school year to $6,701.50 to date. To see previous donations for this school year, view the list HERE.
Other Items Under Consent Agenda
Under Consent Agenda is where you will find approval of Board Meeting minutes, and approval of the monthly Financial Reports, Treasurer Reports, and Board Payables for the month. These reports are posted to the website after the meeting.
- Approval of FY23 School Maintenance Grant - The Board of Education approved the use of School Maintenance Grant funding to replace a fire alarm panel at Woodland Middle School. The grant is a dollar for dollar matching grant program providing awards up to $50,000 exclusively for the maintenance or upkeep of buildings or structures for educational purposes. The estimated cost of the replacement is approximately $140,000, so after the grant, the net cost to Woodland is estimated to be $90,000.
- Approval of Bus Lot Security Fencing - The Board of Education approved a security upgrade to provide fencing for buses housed at Woodland Intermediate for a cost of $42,809.
- Approval of Windows Replacement Computers - The FY23 budget includes the replacement of 50% of the district Windows computers in the amount of $45,134.25. After Oct. 14, 2025, Microsoft will require all customers to use Windows 11.0. Most of the computers are six years old, or older, and will not support the new system.
- Approval of Office and Lab Replacement Computers - The FY23 budget includes the replacement of office staff computers in the amount of $53,599. This cost will be paid by the district as part of the regular schedule for replacement. ESSER funding will be used to purchase student devices for the Learning Resource Center and Middle School labs in the amount of $67,405.
- Approval of American Education Week Proclamation - The Board approved a Proclamation in support of American Education Week. American Education Week, an annual celebration of the importance of public education, will be celebrated November 14-18, 2022.
The business that takes place under "Action Items" is first reviewed by the Board of Education at the previous monthly governing meeting under "Reports/Discussion Items". An item will first be presented as a Report or Discussion item for the Board of Education members to be introduced to the topic and allow time for questions, review, and revisions before that item is moved to the Action Items portion of the agenda for a vote the following month.
- Approval of Two English as a Second Language Teacher Positions - Administration has determined that there is a need for an additional English as a Second Language (ESL) Teacher at both the Middle School and Woodland Primary. The two staff additions are necessary given the number of students, and the level of ESL service needs of our students.
- Approval of Three Paraprofessionals at Woodland Primary - The Board approved three new paraprofessional positions to provide extra support for students with special needs at Woodland Primary.
- Approval of Tax Levy Certification for Truth in Taxation Notice - The Board of Education certified an estimated tax levy in the amount of $79,878,715 to be displayed as a legal notice prior to the levy hearing at the Nov. 17 Board meeting. The estimated levy is posted as part of the Truth in Taxation requirements. A Truth in Taxation legal notice is required if the district will be levying more than 5% over the previous year's extension. Presentation.
- Approval of Ericksson Engineering to Conduct Asphalt Project -The Board approved utilizing the services of Eriksson Engineering to perform an engineering study of Woodland parking lots and playgrounds across the district to help us develop an asphalt replacement plan. Administration estimates that we be able to award the project in January, and work can begin to replace existing pavement in the summer of 2023.
- Approval of Elementary School Office Bid - The Board approved the construction bid to build one centrally located main office at Woodland Elementary. The school recently went through a transition combining East and West into one school. The winning bid was submitted by Manusos General Contracting in the amount of $1,061,144. The project is expected to start in the summer of 2023.
- Approval of Strategic Plan Facilitator, Process, and Timeline - The Board of Education is ready to develop a new Strategic Plan, and recently heard proposals from three facilitators. After evaluating the three proposals, the Board has determined that Dr. Machak and his administrative team will facilitate this process. Work to develop the new strategic plan, with input from Woodland stakeholders, will take place over the next few months.
Reports and Discussion Items
Reports and Discussion Items are placed on the agenda as an introduction to a topic. If the topic will require a vote, it will be brought back under "Action Items" at the next regularly scheduled meeting. This allows Board Members to familiarize themselves with the topic and ask questions, or request additional information and modifications before voting on the matter. The following topics were introduced as a Report/Discussion Item at this month's meeting:
A. Written Report and Presentation on Student Interventions
B. Written Report and Presentation on Findings from Annual District Audit
C. Written Report and Presentation on District Sustainability
D. Discussion of District Website Improvements
E. Written Report on District-Wide LED Lighting
F. Written Report on Revised AV/Sound Replacement in Oak Room
G. Written Report and Job Description for Instructional Tech Coordinator
H. Written Information on Revised Board Policies
I. Receipt of any Freedom of Information Act Requests
Board of Education Meeting Materials
You are always welcome to go back and review meeting materials, presentations, Board Payables, Finance Reports and the video recording from a regularly scheduled Board Meeting on the district website HERE (select the meeting date to view supporting materials). These items are typically posted within 24-48 hours after the meeting.
Invitation: Woodland Veterans Day Recognition
Woodland Primary: We are excited to welcome our families to the school and honor those who served! The ceremony will be on Friday, Nov. 11 at 9 a.m. outside, at the flagpole. There are many ways to be involved, so please read through this survey to see all the ways you can participate! Contact Sarah Baier at firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions.
Woodland Elementary: Are you or a family member an active military member or veteran? If so, Woodland Elementary is looking for members of the military to come into our 1st-3rd grade classrooms and talk to our students. If you are interested, please sign-up HERE.
Woodland Intermediate: There will be a Veterans Day ceremony at Woodland Intermediate for our students and the veterans in their family. Watch for more information from the school.
Woodland Middle School: Middle School students will participate in several service projects to honor Veterans Day. From special lessons in the classroom, to making cards for veterans in the community, they will be recognizing the importance of Veterans Day throughout the day.
Red Ribbon Week at Woodland
Visit the Virtual Backpack to find events and activities in the community! Newly Added: Cub Scout Trunk or Treat Event TONIGHT, and Family Art Night with the Gurnee Park District.
Please remember to visit the Virtual Backpack throughout the year to see other events and activities for children and families in the area. We will be making more of an effort to post information here to reduce the amount of flyers sent home.