Monday, June 10, 2013

Important Agenda Items will be discussed at the Monday, June 10, 2013 BOE Meeting

Monday night -- June 10 -- there will be a BOE Committee of the Whole meeting held at Clarendon Hills Middle School.  It will start at 7 p.m.  Please attend and speak out on any issues that you may be concerned about.

You can access the full agenda by clicking on the "Page" called Current Board Meeting Agenda (in the right hand column of this blog).

This is an important meeting because the Board will continue the discussion it began on May 28 about the MAP test data.
On May 28, the administration discussed the 3rd Grade Math MAP data.  The June 11 meeting will have a discussion on the MAP data for the other grades, both for Math and Reading, and will address whether or not a sufficient percentage of students in each grade achieved their individual growth targets.  NWEA, the company that publishes the MAP tests, has stated that in a high achieving district, at least 70% of the students should achieve their growth targets.  From the data posted on Board Docs, it does not appear that this is happening in D181.

Also on the agenda is a discussion on  "Board agreements" that were developed during a Board self-evaluation session that the new Board participated in on May 13.  We are concerned that at least one of the Board agreements may violate an existing board policy. The agreement addresses how a Board member should respond to an emails or communications from community members.  The agreement states that:

1.  Emails sent to the full Board will only receive a "generic" thank you.
2.  Questions sent to the full Board will only be answered by the superintendent, with a cc to Board members.
3.  For Emails sent to individual Board members:
      a.  the Board member can send a thank you to the sender BUT
      b.  "If the email contains a question, the Board member will request the sender's permission to forward the email to the superintendent for an answer."  In other words, the Board member cannot send a substantive response to the sender.

This attempt by the Board (or perhaps by Dr. Schuster) to restrict communication between individual Board members and community members is in violation of Board Policy 2:0140 which states:

"Board members may express their opinion as an individual when contacted by community members.  Board members may also seek additional information and communicate directly with community members to better understand community members' concerns and issues."  

Why would the Board want an agreement that stifles communications?  It certainly seems contradictory to any efforts to keep the lines of communication open between the voters (parents, teachers and other taxpayers) who elected the board members to be their representatives.

Let's hope the Board addresses this concern on Monday night and decides that this "agreement" not be followed.

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