River Forest school officials hear curriculum adoption recommendations
River Forest Public Schools Committee of the Whole met May 3 to hear Roosevelt Literary Learning Center teachers Alex Mendralla and Edger Roman present information on curriculum adoption recommendations for Next Generation Science Standards.
The River Forest Public Schools Committee of the Whole provides guidance, oversight and governance for the River Forest, Illinois, Public Schools.
Here are the meeting minutes, as provided by the school district.
Roosevelt Literary Learning Center
Mr. Patrick Meyer, Mrs. Anne Gottlieb, Mr. Richard Moore, Mrs. Barbara Hickey. Mr. Roman Ebert, Mr. Ralph Martire
Mrs. Martha Ryan-Toye, Director of Student Services Mr. Larry Garstki, Roosevelt School Principal
Mr. Casey Godfrey, Lincoln School Principal
Mrs. Karen Boozell, Director of Special Education Alison Hawley, Incoming Director’ of Curriculum and Instruction
Marta Kozbur, RFEA Liaison
Catherine Greendyke, parent
Gerri Humbert, parent
Keary Cragen, parent
Markus Sleuwen, parent
Mr. Anthony Cozzi, Director of Finance and Facilities
Mr. Meyer called the Committee of the Whole Meeting to order at approximately 7:00 p.m. He welcomed visitors and invited comments from the audience. A copy of the Speaker’s Roster as well as the Attendance Roster is included in the official minutes.
Catherine Greendyke, 830 N. Herlem Avenue, advocated for a full-day kindergarten program. She spoke about her eldest child's experience in his District 90 kindergarten class and noted the lack of available time in a half-day program. She has volunteered in that class and has
Experienced the time constraints first hand. She requested that the board consider a full-day program in its long-range planning.
Gerri Humbert, 1319 Parle Avenue, spoke about the recent incident of a car hitting a student on the Roosevelt School campus. She stated that the plan in the Roosevelt Exterior project is not safer. She read from the River Forest Public Library newsletter publicly sitting that there will be nine spots opened in the north lot for community use and was outraged that this information was coming from this source and not the District. She was worried that the Board was ceded its will to protect children. She commented on the number of accidents in the recent past and urged the
Board to reconsider and move the visitor spots to Lothrop through when construction is complete. She also requested that the District post a crossing guard at all curb cuts on Lathrop at arrival and dismissal and also permanently close circle drive.
Keary Cragen, 914 Bonnie Brae, also spoke about the car hitting the student. She stated that the previous accidents around Roosevelt School should have served as a warning to the Board about the dangers present. She noted that there are currently six curb cuts around Roosevelt School that pose a danger to students crossing and admonished the Board for ignoring parents (including over 600 signatures on a petition) and District 90 and Village performed traffic studies. The Roosevelt
Committee of the Whole Meeting, May 3, 2016
Exterior project only serves one group, the River Forest Library. She urged the board to care more about the safety of its students.
Markus Sleuwan, 506 Edgewood Place, also spoke about the car hitting the student and noted that it was a logical conclusion to the Board’s recent actions. He stated that the Board compromised safety for convenience. He begged the Board to make the north lot static during school hours and eliminate the interesting of students and cars. He has noted several times recently that the chain was not up to block entrance to the north lot and criticized the Board’s lack of enforcement of its own rules. He questioned whether the Board members believe that they have accomplished their own mission
It was moved by Mrs. Hickey and seconded by Mrs. Gottlieb that the Board of Education approve the agenda as presented.
On call of the roll, the vote was as follows:
Ayes: Mr. Moore, Mrs. Gottlieb, Mr. Meyer, Mr. Ebert, Mrs. Hickey, Mrs. Hickey
The motion carried.
Mr. Moore introduced Alex Mendralla and Edger Roman, Roosevelt School teachers to present information on curriculum adoption recommendations for Next Generation Science Standards, Grades 6—8 and Honors Advance Geometry 8. Mr. Mendralla discussed IQWST as the science materials for adoption. Including digital and print materials, student resources, las materials and professional development, there is an anticipated cost of approximately $67,000. Mrs. Ryan-Toye noted that there will likely be an increase in the cost as actual amounts become clearer due to the need for additional digital and print materials. The hope is to recoup some of those costs in future years as the District moves towards more digital and less print materials. The recommendations as based on the belief that the product will build students’ critical thinking skills. Mrs. Gottlieb questioned he transition from the current materials. Mrs. Ryan-Toye noted that, if approved, the professional development on the new materials would begin this summer.
Mr. Roman discussed Kendall Hunt Discovering Geometry as the math materials for adoption. Including digital and print materials and student resources, there is an anticipated cost of approximately $1,500. The recommendation is based on the belief hat the product will increase student-centered instruction, fostering independent learning. Mr. Moore questions if parents of students will have online access to materials.
Mr. Moore introduced Mrs. Boozell along with Kacie Bair, School Psychologist, to speak about introducing a blended early childhood program at Willard. The program would service students age 3-5 with and without disabilities. The program has characteristics of the former buddy system in District 90 allowing early childhood student to interact with general education students. Several districts in the area have blended program, while some get state funding through an early childhood grant, for which District 90 is not eligible. Currently, District 90 does not fully comply with the least restrictive environment requirement for early childhood. A blended program would be sufficient to be in compliance. Mr. Martire asked how District 90 would communicate the program options to the public and how it would assess the number of students eligible and interested. He wondered if District 90 could partner with other River Forest entities to help with communication. Mrs. Bair spoke about the benefits of a preschool program for at-risk students, including providing them with academic readiness.
Committee of the Whole Meeting, May 3, 2016
There being no further business to discuss, the Committee of the Whole Meeting adjourned at approximately 8:04 p.m.