SCHOOL SAFETY: NATIONAL SCHOOL WALKOUT DAY
In response to the recent mass-shooting in Parkland, Florida, there have been national calls for students to engage in some sort of activity on March 14 to remember victims and protest gun violence in schools. The activity most frequently referenced, and the one that requires forethought from the schools, is a student walkout.
Principals will be sharing any specific plans by students to participate in this movement with the district administration and parents of the school. District 15 wants to allow students a means of expression while maintaining student safety and the ability to have a productive educational day.
Students will be allowed to work with principals to design a safe and reasonable activity. These activities will be on the briefer side (e.g. 17 minutes for the 17 victims) and be supervised by school staff. Students will not be allowed to 'walk out' unless the plan has been shared and approved by the principal. Local law enforcement will be notified of any plan for a student demonstration.
If the topic of the walkout surfaces in your home, please remind your child that regular school rules apply on March 14 and only activities created in conjunction with the principal will be allowed. Also assure them the district works very closely with our local police and fire departments to ensure our schools are safe places for our students to learn and grow.
SCHOOL SAFETY MEASURES TAKEN BY DISTRICT 15, COMMUNITY PARTNERS
District 15 administration has worked closely with police and fire departments for many years to
regularly examine our preparation for and prevention of dangers in our schools. The D15 Safety Committee meets regularly throughout the year to evaluate our emergency plans, to
investigate new components of the plan to make it more robust, and to ensure communication/coordination exists between all parties to ensure our joint efforts will be as effective as possible.
Below are some of the things the Safety Committee has implemented in its safety efforts:
- A minimum of two lockdown drills annually at each school to equip students and staff members with the actions necessary should an intruder enter the school.
- Doors are always locked to ensure the swiftest securing of every classroom.
- Implementation of a one-button, dedicated button on every phone in the school to allow for direct contact with 911 dispatch.
- High resolution cameras at every main entrance to allow for secretarial viewing prior to allowing a visitor to enter.
- Raptor System of screening school visitors to ensure they are not on national databases of violent or sex offenders who are prohibited from entering schools.
- Annual 'rapid response' training for law enforcement in schools (during non-student attendance times) equipping the police department personnel with understanding of our buildings and developing skills to quickly enter a school to remove an unwanted intruder.
- Identification of relocation sites in the event that students need to be removed from schools and reunited with parents (Parents are notified of the sites only when a precipitating event occurs).
- Police departments participate in NIPAS (Northern Illinois Police Alarm System- 99 area law enforcement agencies ready to assist a community in need by assigning some of its manpower and resources to an affected community).
- Anonymous hotline for reporting suspicious individuals.
- Silent alarms in all facilities for direct contact with police departments.
- Reinforcements of windows and doors.
- Training of mental health workers in all D15 schools; collaboration with mental health professionals from Alexian Brothers Hospital.
- Research on the use of protocols to identify and defuse threats (e.g. Virginia Student Threat Assessment).
These are some of the steps the district has taken in its attempts to keep students and staff
safe. Keeping your most precious family member safe is always the top priority.
PLEASANT HILL GIRL SCOUTS LEAD PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE
Girl Scouts from Pleasant Elementary School who also take part in the school's Make a Difference Week each year were selected to lead the Pledge of Allegiance at the March 7 Board of Education meeting.
Led by volunteer Laura Kometer for the last nine years, students from Pleasant Hill participate in service projects each year to give back to the community. With her leadership, the Pleasant Hill students have helped organizations such as WINGS, the Palatine Food Pantry, Lurie Children's Hospital, Honor Flight, Little City, Clearbrook, PADS and more.
TWO-BALL CHAMPIONS PRESENTED TO BOARD
At its March 7 meeting, the Board of Education recognized the winners from the 2018 District 15 two-ball competition.
About 160 boys and 150 girls competed in the basketball competition at the Palatine Park District last month. Two-ball is a partners game where each team has one minute to score as many baskets as possible from any of the designated shooting spots clearly identified on a half court.
Here are the winning teams from each division:
Boys' Small School Division: Frank C. Whiteley Elementary School
Arman and John
P.E. Teacher Andrea Rodino
Boys' Large School Division: Hunting Ridge Elementary School
Kosta and Varun
P.E. Teacher David Sobel
Girls' Small School Division: Marion Jordan Elementary School
Brynn and Hailey
P.E. Teacher Mike Duffy
Girls' Large School Division: Lake Louise Elementary School
Lindsey and Carley
P.E. Teacher Anthony Draegert
Congratulations to our first place two-ball teams, and to all of the students that participated in
this exciting event!
DISTRICT SPELLING BEE WINNERS RECOGNIZED
The Board of Education recognized the winners of all 19 school Spelling Bees at its March 7 meeting, including Calvin F. of Plum Grove Junior High, the winner of the district-wide Spelling Bee.
Calvin went on to win the Regional Spelling Bee Championships and will travel to Washington, D.C. this spring to compete the Scripps National Spelling Bee.
Spelling Bee winners from each District 15 school are as follows:
- Daniel C., Grade 4, Jane Addams
- Dayita M., Grade 4, Central Road
- Trinity S., Grade 5, Kimball Hill
- Venya S., Grade 6, Marion Jordan
- Dwij B., Grade 6, Hunting Ridge
- Jacob M., Grade 6, Thomas Jefferson
- Claudia T. Grade 5, Lake Louise
- Aishvir K., Grade 5, Lincoln
- Sanjit K., Grade 6, Stuart R. Paddock
- Kiersten Ann H., Grade 6, Gray M. Sanborn
- Thomas B. Grade 6, Pleasant Hill
- Pablo C., Grade 6, Virginia Lake
- Sahitya M., Grade 6, Frank C. Whiteley
- Samaira A., Grade 6, Willow Bend
- Martin M., Grade 6, Winston Campus Elementary
- Lily K., Grade 8, Carl Sandburg Junior High
- Joseph K., Grade 7, Winston Campus Junior High
- Ali A., Grade 7, Walter R. Sundling Junior High
- Calvin F., Grade 7, Plum Grove Junior High