Sunday, April 10, 2016

HMS Referendum Results By Precinct -- Majority of NO Votes Cast in the HMS Feeder School Boundary Areas

Both DuPage County and Cook County have now released the results of the HMS Referendum by precinct.  DuPage County results can be accessed at:  Dupage County precinct results for Downers Grove TownshipDupage County precinct results for York TownshipCook County precinct results for Lyons Township.  While we are by no means experts in analyzing election results, we have done our best to do a rough analysis of what areas in the D181 community voted YES or NO (by using Precinct Maps that are available at: Dupage County precinct map for Downers Grove and York TownshipsCook County Precinct Maps for Lyons Township).  Below is a chart we have created showing the results by D181 School*:

So what do these results show?

As noted above, we are not trained in analysis of election results, so our reflections are, in our opinion, more "common sense" observations that we -- D181 parents and taxpayers and community members -- are making.  We'd love to hear what the rest of you think about the results  -- remembering to be mindful that the comments should be constructive and focused on what needs to happen in order for any future D181 referendum to be successful -- so as always SOUND OFF!

We will begin by pointing out that the HMS Referendum lost by 1,147. That is a significant number. There are a total of 32 precincts. D181 voters in Dupage County reside in either Downers Grove Township or York Township. Those in Cook County reside in York Township.  

Elm, Lane, Oak and Madison Schools are the feeder schools for Hinsdale Middle School. Monroe, Prospect and Walker are the feeder schools for Clarendon Hills Middle School. The majority in FIVE of the seven feeder schools' precincts voted NO to the referendum. This majority included voters in the Elm and Lane boundary areas. The NO votes in the Elm and Lane boundary areas exceeded Yes votes by a relatively slim margin, but what cannot be ignored is that 1601 voters in these two HMS feeder areas did not support building the new HMS as proposed in the referendum -- that is nearly 30% of the NO votes that swung the decision. Even in the two HMS feeder schools that had a majority of voters vote YES, a total of 1187 people voted NO. This means that 2788 people in the HMS feeder districts did not support the referendum question to build a $65 million ($90 million with bond interest) replacement school and tear down the existing 40 year old school.

But what is most significant is that the combined NO votes from the HMS feeder schools' precincts made up 51.5% of the total NO votes cast.  

In the three schools that feed into Clarendon Hills Middle School, the margin was much wider, with between 65% and 75% of the voters casting a NO vote on the proposed referendum.  A total of 2630 voters in the CHMS feeder boundaries did not support the referendum question to build a $65 million ($90 million with bond interest) replacement school and tear down the existing 40 year old school.    

While the percentage margin of NO votes from the CHMS feeder schools was larger than from the HMS schools, the reality is that the combined NO votes from the CHMS feeder schools' precincts made up 48.5% of the total NO votes cast.  That is LESS than the total NO votes cast from the HMS feeder schools' precincts.

Moving forward, the D181 Administration and Board of Education must work with the Facilities Committee and ask the really hard question -- why did 5418 community members vote NO?  No doubt, there will be vote YES supporters who will say that the election was lost because parents whose students have or will attend CHMS did not want to see their taxes raised for a school that will not benefit their children.  Accusations were made before the election that a NO vote from CHMS feeder school voters would be a sign of being a bad neighbor, not supporting children and an unwillingness to reciprocate the YES votes cast nearly 20 years ago (in 1997) to build CHMS.  

But hopefully, the Administration, BOE and Committee members will not be so quick to jump to these ludicrous conclusions, since they will have to explain how 51.5% of the NO votes came from voters who live in the HMS feeder schools' boundary areas. Hopefully, these three groups will take the time to do a proper analysis and engage community members who voted NO to determine what it will take for them to change their vote to a YES vote. This engagement and analysis work, if rushed or done in a sloppy, slipshod fashion, will only lead to defeat of a future referendum, whether it is on the November 2016, April 2017 or March 2018 ballots.

In that regard, we were curious to see what the Agenda for the April 11 BOE meeting has that might indicate the type of community engagement that the Administration is proposing to gather this critical information. Sadly, we were extremely disappointed to see that rather than immediately arrange for a district wide survey, that could easily be publicized with Postcards being mailed to ALL D181 Postal Patrons, with a link provided to an online survey, instead, the Administration has arranged for a consulting firm, Patron Insights, to do another randomized PHONE survey of only 400 people.  (See Dr. White's 4/11/16 HMS Facilities Update and Discussion Report.)

400 people????  Really?  In our opinion, a randomized phone survey of only 400 people is NOT going to provide the BOE with meaningful or statistically significant information as to why 5418 of 9689 voters chose to vote NO on March 15, 2016.  If this is the type of quick information gathering that the Administration is proposing to the BOE as a first step, then we are not hopeful that a successful referendum will ever be achieved.  Our hope is that on Monday night, the BOE will SLAP DOWN this ridiculous proposal and insist that the Administration start doing things right.  

For us, the HMS referendum is turning into a comical version of Aesop's Fable -- The Tortoise and the Hare.  We all know that the slow and steady tortoise won that race, not the cocky and quick out of the starting gate hare.  The Administration, BOE and Facilities committee should all recall the moral of this childhood story as they continue the "journey" to a successful HMS referendum.......

* Note:  Downers Grove Township Precinct 11 (in Dupage County) appears to have voters within both the Walker and Prospect school boundary lines (based upon the D181 Boundary map accessible at: D181 Boundary Map) so we have separated it out in the above chart.


Anonymous said...

Thank you bloggers for telling it like it is! The numbers don't lie and the voters sent a clear message, particularly the HMS feeder voters. This project needs to be canned and the board needs to start over. But judging by what is on boardocs for Monday's meeting, we should have serious concerns. A proposed sixth grade learning center with a pre-school at CHMS, a proposed Third Street parking lot at HMS, an organizational chart for the administration with plenty of padded assistant and director positions, and somewhere on the list is the HMS roof repair, which still hasn't been done despite the rain. Wonder how many buckets and bins are in place in the gym to capture the rain, with more to come? What about the safety of our kids in the current HMS?
Has this board lost its mind?

Anonymous said...

I agree with you 10:51 with one minor correction. Board docs is prepared by the administration and presented to the BOE. The BOE will receive this information on Monday. So the question is has the administration lost its mind? Will the BOE support these crazy plans or put a stop to them? The administrators are the highly paid workers guiding this district. They are supposed to provide direction and do the heavy lifting - those aspects are missing from board docs.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for posting this, bloggers. I agree, few "no" votes are probably the "What's in it for me?" people. There's probably a handful. However, I think most "No" votes are people who think something seriously needs to be done, but not the way it was done. These people could have one or more reasons: price, the process not being as well thought out as possible, and the curriculum needing to be fixed first. All valid reasons, in my opinion.

However, I just want to ask: how many people would consider building 2 smaller schools rather than one bigger school? If we build 2 smaller schools (so 3 middle schools total), maybe we could make them all equal in size. If my math's correct, there's a little less than 1500 middle school students right now (~800 at HMS, ~650 at CHMS). Maybe we should have 3 schools of 500-550 students each? That way, it'll be easier to determine parity and whatnot.

I agree, the plan needs to be scrapped and start from scratch. I'm not an architect not planner for things as big as a school. However, the I see it, we need to decide how big a school or schools we want, how many classrooms, what size those classrooms should be, what non-classroom areas we want/need, and how big a budget we want. All before looking into architects. Considering how many administrators we have, all with masters degrees probably, I might add, the district should have enough qualified people to answer these questions. Bring in parents, business owners, taxpayers and all other stockholders in the community, and see what they want. While we can have concerts, musicals and presentations in the gym or something, I admit, I'd prefer an auditorium. I don't know how legal it is, but maybe the district could do a GoFundMe or other crowd funding thing for an auditorium. If they build a new school on the current site, the village already stated it would be willing to pay for a parking lot/deck.

As 10:51 pointed out, we also need more short - medium term solutions. The roof really needs to get repaired, if not replaced. While I don't like the idea of pouring more money into the school, any new schools will still be years off, and the roof needs to get fixed NOW.

As 10:51 also noted, the district posted an organizational chart. Why do we need so many assistants, directors, and other administrators? Look at the Business & Operations side. Do we really need all those people just to look after who gets paid what? Plus, I don't see why we need an assistant superintendent level person in charge of SpEd. Make that a director level position under an Assistant Superintendent of learning. I realize SpEd is important, but with the right person, director-level is fine. Plus, we'd save $20,000+ a year on salary and benefits. Plus, reading many of the BoardDocs, many of these administrators seem so interested in BS stuff like vision and belief statements, but have no clue how to implement their decisions. Plus, when their decisions blow up in their faces, the board doesn't hold them responsible. We really need people who can see the big picture, make the right decisions, know how to implement them, and accept responsibility for their actions. We spend way too much many on the administrators already, they should already be experts on this stuff. We don't need outside specialists like the DLI guy, ECRA and all those other people.

Anonymous said...

Following up on 12:06's comment about the organizational chart posted on Board Docs, it seems to add even more mystery to the question of what is going on with the Director of Curriculum position. Earlier comments last week questioned why a Director of Curriculum job posting was added to the D181 Job Openings website on April 4.

Nothing has been announced that would indicate that the current Director (we all know who she is) is leaving, so did this mean that Dr. White wanted to add a second Director of Curriculum position to an already top heavy Dept. of Learning? The organizational chart answers that question. Only one Director of Curriculum position is listed under the Assistant Superintendent of Learning. Interestingly, the online job posting has now been tweaked and says it is an "anticipated job opening." ( In my opinion, posting (and tweaking) a job opening before the BOE takes formal action wreaks of back door dealing. Guess we'll all have to wait and see what is announced, hopefully before a Director is actually hired. Frankly, the BOE should demand more transparency from Dr. White on what is going on in the Dept. of Learning. Is this stealth posting intended to detract outsiders from applying? Will he simply promote someone internally? I hope not, because there is, in my opinion, no one qualified to assume the Director of Curriculum position. To used an old adage: "Done that, didn't work." And this can be said about the last series of director positions. I hope the Administration and BOE aren't stupid enough to try this again.

Another interesting thing disclosed by the Organizational chart are the 2 openings listed under the Business and Operations department run by Ken Surma, the Assistant Superintendent of Business and Operations. That ($file/2016_04_09_D181_Org_Chart.pdf) That position is now posted on the online job vacancy link. The BOE also recently approved the resignation of the Assistant Business Manager, but I checked Board Docs for the last several months and it doesn't look like the BOE has approved the firing or resignation of the Director of Operations. So again, why is something getting posted before the BOE takes formal action to create a vacancy. Something seems off with these 2 job openings, but one thing is clear. If the two senior administrators who report directly to Mr. Surma are leaving, the BOE better find out why they no longer want to work in the Dept. Of Finance and Operations.


Anonymous said...

Wow bloggers! I'm impressed with your chart and analysis. Once again, you seem to be doing more work than the overpaid administrators in D181. I just looked at the D181 website and Board Docs to see what information they have provided on the precinct data and also what, if any analysis, they have prepared for the BOE and the community. A spreadsheet of the precinct votes and maps of the precincts can be found at on Board Docs and on the district website at: But there is no report analysing or even attempting to analyse the results. They don't even tell us which precincts lie in each of the feeder schools. Maybe they didn't want to have to publicly acknowledge that the majority of 5 of the 7 feeder school's voters voted No? So THANK YOU bloggers for doing the heavy lifting for them -- again. Once again, thank you for YOUR transparency. Wish some of it would rub off on the overpaid administrators.

Anonymous said...

Glad to see on the agenda that alternative locations are finally being considered. Glad to see they are getting the current HMS site appraised. Glad to see they are talking to D86 about the high school plans. Glad to see they are talking to the Village of Hinsdale about parking.

Looks like somebody has been reading this blog! We have been advocating these steps ( and more) for 6 months. Would love to read something about exploratory conversations being held with other school districts. It may not happen for 10 or 15 years, but it will happen and we need to lead it.

Regarding locations, it seems for now at least that only the IBLP property is a possibility. Maybe a smaller school on the current site and a school at the IBLP site for Hinsdale north siders. The only way to afford the additional principal and front office staff is to cut central office bloat, which will not be difficult.

Or sell the downtown land and build at IBLP. There is a lot of space. Heck, they have some large facilities because they held education and various seminars there for years. Maybe we can retrofit a building for a middle school. My point is let's get creative and explore all options before agreeing to hold a referendum.

I don't know where this will go, I am very disappointed none of this was done before the referendum, but happy it is finally being done.

The process works! Stay vocal and keep voting. The next plan will be far superior to the one that just failed.

Thanks Parents for keeping up this blog.

Anonymous said...

Just was looking at the board docs for tomorrow's meeting. It is outrageous that $35,000 in student fees remain uncollected for this year. And now parents are being told if they don't pay those by April 15 they can't register for next year? Sure, parents should pay their fees, but this fee collection fiasco is not their fault. It lies with the business office and someone there needs to be held accountable.

Parent of 3 said...

I cannot believe that the administration is even floating the idea of turning CHMS into a grade level center for Pre-school, Kindergarten and 6th grade students, and then using HMS for 7th and 8th graders district wide. I'd like to hear them present reports from Kindergarten and pre-school teachers on whether it is a good idea on a social, emotional level, to have kids bond with each other in these developmental years, learning social skills and how to interact and make friends, only to have these bonds ripped apart in 1st grade as they are all scattered to 7 different schools. Whoever came up with this dumb idea should be fired. I hope the BOE asks the Administration to identify who came up with this proposal and have them attend tomorrow's BOE meeting in order to be available to answer any questions or concerns that BOE members (I hope, unless they too are ignorant on early development) may have. Once again, parents are left wondering what kind of crazies are running the district?

Anonymous said...

The agenda for Monday's meeting is a perfect example of why the BOE needs to immediately reinstate a second meeting each month. If the members fully engage with each other and have meaningful and substantive discussions on the agenda items, tomorrow's meeting will run past midnight. I wonder when the BOE members received their board packets or access to the board docs? Historically it is on the Thursday prior to the meeting, but it seems nonsensical to dump hundreds of pages of documents on so many different topics on them only 4 days before a meeting that is only held once a month. The administration needs to do better. It needs to give our elected officials time to read, process, and ask questions about the agenda items. It is becoming increasingly clear that the monthly meetings are resulting in board members not fully engaging in all topics. They are either exhausted during the meetings or must be exhausted preparing for the meetings if they do it right. It is not fair for the administration to conduct itself in this dilatory and data dump fashion. Moreover, my review of the documents the BOE members have been given show a complete lack of direction from the administration. Past administrations would include analysis and recommendations in their reports, and provide the BOE with clear direction, however, this is sorely lacking with the current administration. Why is the BOE putting up with this crap?

30+ year resident said...

I personally have heard 2 BOE members over the past month talk about creating grade level schools - so this is not JUST coming from the Admin but likely something the Administration was asked to look into by the BOE after the failed referendum.

I agree that Kindergartners should stay in their local neighborhood schools, but think it could be a great idea to move the district pre-school over to CHMS if Oak is needing the space and to also make the HMS problem no longer just for those that feed into HMS but for everyone in D181!

Anonymous said...

To 8:27:
It's obvious you are getting your jollies thinking about all the potential 7th and 8th graders having to go to HMS so they can deal with the "problems" of the building. How noble of you as a community member.
To me, a parent of three, this is no joke. My kids will attend HMS in the next few years. I voted against the referendum because I will not support a new, over the top building while the education my kids are receiving is barely adequate at best. I pay tens of thousands in property taxes for what is amounting to be a very average educational experience for my kids. This was not always the case. But it is now.
So before you snicker about the thought of moving our kids around to put shock and fear into the minds of parents, you should take a few minutes to look at the closing prices of houses in Hinsdale and CH available on In most cases, the sold prices are down significantly from even 10 years ago or even longer. Meanwhile, our taxes have gone up and now we are expected to pay even more?
Quit your snickering and open your eyes. The cat is out of the bag on this district, and if the referendum is dangled and threatened again by our administrative misfits and clueless board of education members who continue to support this nonsense, I will still vote NO.

Anonymous said...

The grade level school idea and the preschool center is being floated as an attempt to have the entire district feel the same pain that HMS parents are supposedly feeling. Its a fine strategy but a better one would have been to try and make the entire district level on the positive as opposed to the negative (i.e build a new HMS so the students have 180 to 200 ft / student vs CHMS at 132). Always struck me as odd how they were selling this school to the wrong audience. The HMS parents will take just about anything that is an improvement to what they have. The people they needed to be selling this to were the parents with no kids in the school and the people in the CHMS district. Allowing the teachers and the architects to come up with a school that created a huge disparity was only going to alienate the CHMS crowd and the excessive cost was alienating everyone else. I still feel they are looking at this all wrong. Maybe as they continue to screw this up the overcrowding will correct itself - people will opt not to move here.

30+ year resident said...

10:29 - I don't know why you are assuming such incorrect things about me and being so angry about what I wrote. I thought the bloggers didn't post personal attacks. I am very new to this Blog and being involved in the school issues and this kind of response makes me think those on this blog are not open to other ideas, but instead attacking anything not aligned with their own. I thought it would be better to have a blog with different voices and not just always the same ones.

I certainly am not "getting my jollies" about any of this and how could you say that it is obvious that I am? And where did I "snicker". Read my post again - no jollies or snickers at all. My eyes ARE wide open. I have been going to board meetings, open houses, tours and reading everything that comes my way. Are you? When I heard about the possibility of grade levels as a solution - from a BOE member - I was not shocked or scared at all. I actually took the time to think about and it seems like a possible solution among many. I also have 3 children - all of them young and years away from going to HMS. I would welcome any situation that is better than the current building. I have lived here for 30 years - I went to the former Hinsdale Junior High and Hinsdale Central. I don't know what you assumed about me, but I have a lot at stake in this topic, from sadly watching this topic turn people into angry neighbors pitted against each other, to my own children being directly affected since they will attend whatever school(s) are in place in a few years to my home values. I too pay taxes to live here - just like you and everyone else in D181. We just don't agree (or maybe we would if there was positive and courteous discourse). Please have some respect for those that think a different way, or those that will vote YES and will support the decisions made by the Board.

Anonymous said...

10:29: I agree the district needs to fix the curriculum first. However, I take offense by you putting problems in quotation marks. While I'm glad you nor your kids personally haven't experienced serious problems at HMS, I have, and I personally know several people who have. This has included migraines, nosebleeds, asthma and other health related issues. This also doesn't cover the design inefficiencies. Out of curiosity, did you go to one of the school tours the district offered? If you have, fine. I can respect an educated opinion. Plus, the HMS teachers and staff can do a more than adequate job teaching our kids. However, I also believe they could do an even better job with decent sized and shaped rooms, proper HVAC controls, no leaks and so forth. And please, just because you haven't had any health problems at HMS, don't minimize the problem for those that have. Thank you.

Anonymous said...

This is 10:29 again and I want to be clear that in no way did want to give the impression I was diminishing the problems at HMS. The problems in that building are real. I did attend a tour, and I have attended many board meetings only to walk away disgusted and disappointed in the lack of action by our elected community members. It's nice that a board member has told a community member that a grade level center at CHMS is a possible solution. Congratulations on being the chosen one for this knowledge. I recall some years back this idea was floated by a former administrator and was cancelled out due to parent uproar. The current board knows full well that this will anger parents, and they are doing it for spiteful reasons because the referendum didn't pass. Let's call this for what it is, a scare tactic. Talk about pitting parents against each other! I can't wait for the next board election so we can get some fresh insight into our district and clear out the incompetent administrative house.

Anonymous said...

I am not in favor of grade level centers and I know the idea was floated a many years ago and comes around every few years. While I am deeply disappointed in the BOE and administration about a bunch of things, I don't think revisiting the idea is "spiteful" or anyone is "getting their jollies". What ever that means.

Some communities have grade level centers, some do not. It would be interesting to see if someone could point out the educational, social advantages for the affected students and financial( to taxpayers) benefits of such a move.

One of the many concerns raised with the recent referendum was that it was rushed, flawed, and many reasonable alternatives were ignored and they "locked in" early on building a new school at the same site. So I am glad to see some new ideas being considered. I just hope they are serious and not "getting their jollies".

We may not build two middle schools, but we need to strongly look at the idea. We may not decide grade level centers are right for D181, but we need to look at the idea. We may decide not to let Hinsdale build a parking deck adjacent to HMS, but we need to strongly vet the idea. We may not be able to consolidate services and schools with other districts at this time, but we need to start the conversation.

Grade level centers should be strongly considered only if we have PROVEN academic, social and financial reasons to do so. If a handful of administrators and parents just want to punish the rest of us, then this too will be voted down.

Anonymous said...

10:29, this is 8:54. My apologies. In my experience, when people put quotes around a word, it usually means they don't mean that word. That's one reason why I hate text-based communication: you can never 100% tell their intentions. So I apologize.

Anyways, I just wish the administration just had a better balance between thinking and action. There have been too many times where they talked so much, but didn't do anything, but also do things without thinking first.

Anonymous said...

The issue with this board and this administration is that they need to be crystal clear what their intentions are. If Grade Centers are what they want and they are serious about keeping them that way then fine but I am pretty certain that this is just another ploy to try and get a new HMS. Let's see how committed they are to designing this school for 7th and 8th graders making it more difficult to prevent them from going back to 6,7 and8 in each school. The problem with this board and this admin is that their intentions/motives are pretty clear. Let's see if they HMS crowd is willing to commit to 10 yrs of 6th grade in CHMS, I suspect not.

In the end, it really doesn't matter what the parents of the students in the district want, the primary obstacle across the board would appear to be the no votes of those with no students who will decide the fate of this school and its future referendum. Privately fund the performing arts center. Make grade center out of CHMS for 6 graders only (2nd and 3rd floor) with preschoolers on 1st and new school for 7th and 8th. By doing this, the will get more votes from the Monroe, Walker and Prospect feeder areas couple this with a lower cost and they will get more votes. Question is, will parents in HMS commit to that long term 6th grade to CHMS.

I don't think BOE needs a referendum to make the grade center move BTW.

jay_wick said...

The district's E-Newsletter that went out earlier today includes this entry:

Clarification on Middle School Facilities Discussion
Tonight's Board meeting includes a report by the administration that follows-up on Board requests that were made during the Special meeting held March 21, which was focused on discussion around next steps for HMS given the failure of the March 2016 referendum. ...consider what options exist for potential grade level reconfiguration. It is important to clarify that this is just a discussion, and not a recommendation. One such option, among others, would be to house all sixth graders at CHMS, and all 7th and 8th graders at a newly constructed HMS. ...The Board and administration are exploring many options that have been suggested throughout the last several months, and again, this is only a preliminary discussion.

No doubt this "clarification" was prompted by the many texts and emails that concerned parents have been circulating. The fact is there is no one in the community that would think it wise to spend more of the district's limited resources to needlessly shuttle more kids around to/from a wacky "6th grade and kindergarten" facility. Anyone at all interested in the outcomes of how schools are organized cannot help but see the most recent trends are towards minimizing the negative consequences that come from transitions along the educational path; that means fewer shifts in moving from one school to another at the end of a school year not interrupting the critical adolescent years with more disruption! One cannot help but find it curious how quickly the administration devoted any time at all to "exploring" this hare-brained idea which seems more about punitive efforts to "share the pain" than any positive changes to enhance the learning environments for the widest range of students.

Perhaps if those who so want a replacement for the existing middle school in the core of Hinsdale could direct some energy toward educating themselves and the broader community about the bi-partisan support for school consolidation they might actually accomplish both their goal of a new facility and please taxpayers with reduced operational costs --

School District Consolidation |Illinois State Board of Education

Illinois needs to embrace Quinn's proposal for school district consolidation | Chicago

Rauner questions the need for 850-plus school districts in Illinois| St. Louis Post-Dispatch

Illinois Public School District Consolidation:
A Tiered Approach | Center for the Study of Education Policy Illinois State University

School District Reorganization in Illinois: Improving Educational Opportunities for Students | Western Illinois University

Is it possible that administrators, who risk signing off on their own termination through consolidation, would drag their feet on efforts that might result in a better solution for students and the broader the community?

Anonymous said...

Thanks Jay Wick. While I see many benefits of consolidating school districts, especially for consolidating separate K-8 & 9-12 districts: less administrative overhead, more streamlines curriculum from kindergarten to high school.

However, I also see some potential issues: most of us probably know how bad the curriculum is in D181. Should we consolidate and the administration somehow survives and becomes the administration of the new, consolidated district, even more people would be affected. Also, I remember how poorly a former D86 board member was hated by the staff & community members. I fear that even more people will get affected by such awful board members. I also fear the amount of people who will have a "What's in it for me?" should we go to referendum again to rebuild/renovate any school. While possibly a modest amount, I fear big changes that affect only a subset of any consolidated district would bring a large, negative public opinion

Anonymous said...

Bloggers -- In case you didn't know, the VOTE YES FOR HMS Facebook page has published (without attribution) your precinct chart. They seem to like the chart which they thanked an "anonymous blogger for." Would've been more appropriate for them to cite a link to your blog. Since they are obviously reading this blog, perhaps they will update their Facebook post to include the link to this blog. The chart came with an analysis, which is an interesting read and should have been mentioned in the Facebook post.

The Parents said...

Thanks for the heads up 4:13. We don't mind that our chart was published on their Facebook page, but agree that it would be more professional of them to also publish the source link. Maybe they will read this and take that step. If not, oh well... People can come to their own conclusions about why they don't want to advertise this blog when copying material that appears on it.....

Anonymous said...

A somewhat frightening thought I just had: instead of grade level centers, what would happen if the district went to the other extreme: one single K-12 school (after consolidating with Hinsdale Central). Even without Maercker and Oak Brook school districts (which also feed into Hinsdale Central), that would mean over 6000 students in a single school. Where would we put such a school? How much would it cost? I just hope no board members nor administrators think that that's a good idea.

Anonymous said...

April 10, 10:51 am and 11:45 am a previous D181 BOE member, I can tell you that the agenda for a BOE meeting is established by the BOE President, BOE VP and the Superintendent. It is not just set by the Administration. Many of the items that were on Monday's agenda were items/information requested by the BOE at their last meeting. Many times BOE's are criticized if they don't investigate all options/ solutions for an issue. 10:51 pointed out the 6th grade center item on the agenda. It was an item that was inquired about by the BOE. Putting all 6th graders at CHMS along with another group of D181 students and having all the D181 7th and 8th graders at HMS is one possible solution to the middle school situation that the BOE thought should be investigated. However, at Monday's BOE meeting the BOE dismissed this possibility because there isn't enough space at HMS for all the 7th and 8th graders and the BOE had received numerous communications in opposition to this idea. It may have seemed like a waste of time to even contemplate this grade level idea, but all too often the BOE is criticized for not looking at all options on an issue.

11:45 is totally correct in saying that the Administration, as the educational experts, should be advising the BOE concerning the HMS situation, as well as on all other issues. I continue to be disappointed at the lack of Administrative recommendations to the BOE on all issues. The Administration should be advising the BOE as to viable, best practice solutions to all issues. Instead, our Superintendent continually asks the BOE for direction. Yes, the BOE should give the Administration their "marching orders," but only after the Administration has researched all options/ solutions on an issue and has educated the BOE as to their options and even given a recommended best option.The individuals in the Administration are the highly paid professionals hired to do the "heavy lifting" and guide the BOE. I have not seen this happen in the past nor do I see it happening currently. It was my experience as a D181 BOE member that the Superintendent and the rest of the Administration continually advised the BOE as to its options on issues. Once again Monday night, I unfortunately heard too many "I don't know's" or "I'll have to find out" from the Administration, especially in the area of finance.This should not be happening!

Anonymous said...

I'd like everyone posting to remember that our BOE is comprised of parents who volunteer their time for these positions. While it is clear that different members put in varied amount of time to their BOE duties, the majority of them spend an incalculable amount of time on this stuff. Not only do they attend the regularly scheduled meetings, they are all also required to serve on various committees and attend those meetings as well. And, the public meetings are just the visible part of the commitment. The preparation, research and follow-up that it takes to do this VOLUNTEER position well is incredible. Couple that with an administration that has made poor, uninformed decision after poor, uninformed decision which has required way more oversight ad follow-up than there ever should be, and you have what amounts to a significant part-time job for these BOE members. While they are not perfect and I may not agree with everything they do, I firmly believe that the majority is doing the best they can do, and is, frankly, more committed and willing to take this role on than 99% of parents in this district. They deserve our thanks and respect even if we disagree with their decisions.

Anonymous said...

Agree. Full time unpaid job.