High School District 214
Highlights from the Board of Education Meetings

Feature Story 


Volunteers Recognized for
District 214 Service
The Board of Education on Thursday honored 11 volunteers with the Distinguished Service Award in recognition of their commitment to the District's schools and programs and the difference they've made in staff
and student lives. View pictures here.
Honorees were:
Josh Parra, Administration Center
La Quinta Inns & Suites General Manager Josh Parra reached out to the District last year with a goal of providing meaningful work experiences for students.
As a result of his efforts, the Vocational Services department has had students at La Quinta with a job coach this academic year. Josh and his staff have worked to ensure students are learning valuable skills, and he has personally come to know the students and their abilities. Josh understands that having students on board is beneficial to them as learners and to his business.

Michael La Vant, Community Education
Michael La Vant began working as a volunteer tutor in Community Education's Read to Learn Literacy/Volunteer (RTL) program at the Mount Prospect Library site in 2014. He trained as a tutor for 17 hours and provided 52 instructional hours while logging perfect attendance.
With a Master of Library Science and 13 years experience as a reference librarian already, he was an outstanding addition to the program. Michael took on the critical task
of reorganizing the RTL library, and volunteers twice weekly to ensure the library is well-stocked and organized.

Kevin Opperman, Buffalo Grove High School
As President of the Buffalo Grove Instrumental Association, Kevin Opperman goes above and beyond to provide quality student and parent experiences. Under his leadership, the BGIA supports numerous activities, including the band's performance at Symphony Center in Chicago and Northwestern University's Pick-Staiger Concert Hall, a Canadian Brass visit and fundraisers to support student experiences. In 2014, Kevin served as a parent representative on the District's Capital Projects Feasibility Task Force/Citizens Advisory Group.

Susie Schneider, Elk Grove High School
Susie Schneider is president of the Elk Grove's Parent-Teacher Council, organizing and overseeing numerous programs and events. She coordinates the school's Craft Show, a remarkable event that requires dozens of volunteers, brings in hundreds of vendors and generates thousands of dollars that directly support school programs. She also is an active member of the Instrumental Music Boosters. At every home football game, Susie will be there, promoting fundraisers to support Elk Grove's instrumental music programs.

Katie and Bob Leff, John Hersey High School
Over the last decade, Katie and Bob Leff have devoted hundreds of hours to the choir, drama and fine arts departments. They have served on the Choir Booster Board in a variety of capacities, and they do it all - from sewing a button on a costume to chairing the Fall Gala fundraiser and serving as booster membership chairmen and Chicagoland Showcase volunteer and spirit wear coordinators. They have increased membership in the Choral Boosters by demonstrating that being involved matters, and made a significant difference at Hersey.

Jean Walker, Prospect High School  
Jean Walker has served Prospect High School as a staff member, athletic director and, following retirement, faithful volunteer. She was a pioneering force in girls' athletics in the northwest suburbs and Illinois, and is the namesake of the Prospect competition gym. Jean founded and led a leadership program for athletes that continues today. She began and then helped run the IHSA State Girls Tennis meet for 40 years. She now is helping lead the significant effort to convert the school's athletic photo gallery to a digital format.

Dave Scanlan, Rolling Meadows High School
In the last year, Rolling Meadows Police Chief Dave Scanlan has worked collaboratively with the school to increase parking lot safety by helping improve the traffic pattern to enter and exit the property. He always focused on the safety of students, staff and community members. He was at the school by 6:30 a.m. to help direct traffic to get firsthand knowledge of the challenges, and attended evening school programs to talk with community members when the school was problem-solving ways to add a second entrance for buses to access the school.

Rosa Mejia, Vanguard School
Rosa Mejia is an advocate for Latino students and empowers young adults to advocate for themselves. She has mentored students at the Harper College Latino Summit and given career presentations at Vanguard School's Career Day. Recently, Rosa volunteered nearly a week to provide extra support to Vanguard students on an overnight, experiential education trip to the University of Wisconsin Stevens Point campus. Rosa has invested more than 100 hours of service with Vanguard this school year, positively impacting students' lives.

Linda and Drew Dammeier, Wheeling High School
For six years, Linda and Drew Dammeier have been a driving force behind the band and orchestra programs and numerous sports programs. Linda is the Wheeling Instrumental League president, and has served on the board for many years. Linda and Drew are involved with the school's Chicagoland Marching Band Festival, Holiday Extravaganza, Wing Ding, Pops Concert and European trip. They monitor judges, provide meals and coordinate concert receptions, hospitality rooms, fundraising activities, trips and uniforms. The couple lends that same support to the orchestra and athletic programs as well.
Board, Custodial Maintenance Association Approve New Contract

The Board approved a new four-year contract with the Custodial Maintenance Association, the nearly 170-member union for employees including custodial
and maintenance workers and tech and media services personnel.

Association members approved the contract February 17 with a 2-1 majority vote. The new contract takes effect July 1, 2015, and runs through June 30, 2019.

"Our Custodial Maintenance Association plays an important role in District 214's success. Every day, we see evidence of their commitment and the strengths they provide," Employee Relations Supervisor Kathleen Polach said. "We believe this contract reflects an appreciation for their hard work and significant contributions."

Under the contract:

- Custodial Maintenance Association members will receive a wage increase of 2.5 percent in the first year of the contract, 2 percent in the second year, 1.8 percent in the third year and 1.7 percent in the final year.

- Members and administration have agreed to study the concept of flexible scheduling, and will create a committee to determine what that may look like and how it could be implemented in line with District needs.

- Job descriptions will be reviewed and updated to better reflect duties as requests of and needs for association members evolve in the District.  

"This contract demonstrates our mutual respect and
trust," said Board Member Todd Younger, the Board representative on the negotiating team. "It further reflects our commitment to support our staff in a responsible manner toward a mission of collaboratively preparing students for success beyond high school."
Board Discusses Preliminary Budget

The Board reviewed preliminary guidelines in preparation for the 2015-2016 budget. In his remarks, Superintendent Dave Schuler noted the unknowns in the state budget, but stressed the District intends to present the Board with a balanced budget as in previous years.


The Board reviewed and discussed various assumptions and guidelines for the budget, including a lower consumer price index, which limits how much districts can receive from the county. Increasing healthcare, fuel, utilities and technology costs are additional factors for the 2015-16 budget. Enrollment projections suggest a slight decrease in 2015-2016, and existing cost containment initiatives
will continue.


The Board will vote on the preliminary guidelines in March. The Board will review a tentative budget August 6, 2015 and vote on the final budget September 17, 2015.

About High School District 214
We are the second largest high school district in Illinois, serving
more than 12,000 students from eight communities. Our nationally recognized district includes six comprehensive high schools and four alternative programs, offering more than 600 academic courses and 140 co-curricular opportunities.

Monday, February 23, 2015 

After the Gavel

The Board approved $8.98 million in bids for work at four schools this summer. The work, which includes lighting and electrical upgrades at Elk Grove and Wheeling high schools and construction at John Hersey and Prospect high schools, is part of the Capital Projects Program approved in September.
© 2015 Township High School District 214. All rights reserved.