Tuesday, July 19, 2011
A board seat will remain empty on the District 218 Board of Education after an Illinois Board of Elections
The District 218 Board of Education will be down one member for the next two years after the Illinois State Board of Elections determined the board failed to fill a vacant seat in the required time period. Incumbent board member Ron Pratl resigned shortly after winning reelection with just a 21 vote margin citing personal reasons. The board then interviewed two possible replacements. Linda Flanagan-Vahl, who narrowly lost to Pratl in April's election, and Pratl’s brother, Donald, both were considered. The board was unable to come to a consensus on either candidate, said Board President Randy Heuser last week. The state board's determination that the seat was not filled in the proper time frame means it will sit empty until the next …
Monday, May 30, 2011
The world just got bigger for Richards High School graduates, but many people think they can handle it.
Once a year, the hallways of Richards High School bustle with seniors who aren't there to learn, but to graduate. As the Class of 2011 lined up against their lockers on Thursay, waiting for the band to strike the first notes of “Pomp and Circumstance,” they joked around with their friends, smiled for the cameras and spoke with favorite teachers about graduation-party plans. Like many graduates before them, they'd yet to fully realize that high school was almost over. “It’s so hard to compile every memory and emotion that came with this experience,” said class president Holly Brenza to a gymnasium full of faculty, parents and peers. “But what’s even harder is facing this moment, and realizing that this chapter of our lives is ending.” …
Thursday, May 26, 2011
Question of ethics raised by a Patch report that Bloom Trail High School donated to the South Chicago Heights mayor's campaign fund.
Should a school district be donating money to a political campaign? That's the question raised by a south suburban school district's contributions to a local mayor with money earned through the school's pop machines. Whether those donations are illegal, or merely unethical, depends on how you interpret "public funds" under state law. Bloom Trail High School donated to the South Chicago Heights mayor's campaign fund for the last four years, according to a report on Chicago Heights Patch, giving at least $200 to "Citizens for Dave Owen" every January since 2008. This year, the amount increased to $250. District 206 Supt. Glen Giannetti told Patch he made the contributions, and that he sees nothing wrong with using the money this way because …
Wednesday, April 27, 2011
D218 school board member who narrowly won third time was noticeably absent from Tuesday's meeting. Sources say he resigned. Also, a settlement is reached with a special ed student.
Winners of the recent Community High School District 218 board election were sworn in Tuesday night, except for incumbent Ron Pratl, whose narrow victory has been held up while the county conducts a recount. Pratl, of Chicago Ridge and a Richards High School alum, won his third term over opponent Linda Flanagan-Vahl by just 22 votes. However, a source within the school district told Patch that Pratl missed Tuesday night’s special meeting because he has resigned. It has been alleged that Pratl stepped down sometime after the April 11 board meeting under the duress of fellow board members. If true, no announcement has been made. A second source close to the school board has alleged that Pratl was caught orchestrating no-bid school contracts …
Wednesday, April 13, 2011
Updates to proposed Title 1 plan mean low-income students may reap benefits.
The numbers don't lie. From 2009 to 2010 students who fell below the federal poverty line at Community High School District 218 was at 48 percent. This year it jumped to 53 percent then to 63 percent, said Anne Coffman, director of state and federal programs for the district. So in an effort to keep its increasingly low-income student population ahead of the curve next year, District 218 is looking to distribute Title 1 funding evenly to all three of its community high schools. It's called the Schoolwide Program, one of two under statutes of the No Child Left Behind Act. “It's a very complicated...with lots of federal regulations,” Coffman said of the Title 1 program, “but we welcome it. We're fortunate to have the funding.” At present, …
Monday, April 4, 2011
A daily video recap of the Southland's top stories
Cops Charge Woman in Hubcap Thefts Tempers Flare in D218 School Board Race Campaign Contributions: Election 2011 Dance Dance Contribution: Teachers Cut Footloose to Help D161 Students (VIDEO)