Dear D53 Families and Staff:
Today, we celebrate Principal Appreciation Day and we are so fortunate to have two tireless administrators serving our school community. Thank you to Melissa Zaniewski for her leadership at Butler Junior High School and her long tenure within District 53. She is truly committed to ensuring that students are poised for individual success and teachers feel supported. Furthermore, we recognize Andrea Prola, who leads Brook Forest Elementary, and her enthusiasm for building school culture. We also celebrate a personal achievement as she completed her PhD in Education. Congratulations, Dr. Andrea Prola!
In early November, Dr. Andrea Prola, Mr. Andrew Griffith, and I will travel to Washington, D.C. to accept the National Blue Ribbon School award for Brook Forest Elementary; one of only 12 public elementary schools in the state of Illinois to receive this honor. We look forward to celebrating together as a school district community. Congratulations again to Brook Forest students, teachers, staff, and parents on this national recognition.
The district rollout and adoption of Otus, our personalized learning and student outcomes tool, has progressed throughout the fall. These standards aligned assessments allow our teachers insight into student performance beyond percentages to further department and grade level conversations regarding specific growth areas and a more personalized learning environment. Families will receive more specific information from building principals in mid-November about family access, webinars, and how you can utilize this tool to support student growth.
Finally, the Board of Education held its regular monthly meeting on Monday, October 17, 2022. At that meeting, the Board of Education approved the replacement and repair of the Brook Forest Elementary basketball poles, backboards, and hoops, along with the installation of 2 benches. Furthermore the district NWEA MAP Data, which measures growth, projects proficiency on high stakes tests, and informs how teachers can differentiate instruction, evaluate programs, and structure curriculum, for both schools was presented at the Education Committee meeting, and approved for posting.
As a result of the Board of Education meeting, I am forming a Superintendent's Advisory Committee related to Transportation with up to 15 members. All parents who are interested in serving on this advisory committee are encouraged to submit an application here by October 28, 2022. The meeting of this advisory committee will be held virtually on Tuesday, November 1, 2022 from 9:00 AM - 10:00 AM. Activities of this group are restricted to non-authoritative recommendations. Progress and recommendations will be shared with the Board of Education.
Stay well, be safe!
Dr. Paul O'Malley
Superintendent of Schools