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Person of interest July 22, 2014 at 11:27 am
D86, is not over taxing us. We have one of the lowest property tax rates in Dupage County. Also,Read More the district has had a surplus of money for many years, they do not overspend. Why do teachers deserve a decrease (or extremely minimal increase) in pay for good work?
Sue Sullivan July 22, 2014 at 12:52 pm
Chris Frank has put the issue in perfect perspective. Taxes and home values are not the focus. AnRead More honest day's pay for an honest day's work is. Most workplaces reward evaluate performance and remunerate accordingly. In difficult times, there may be no increases. This is simply good business practice. Most workplaces do not cover healthcare 100%. Professional workplaces have a dress code. I would predict that if a position were to be available in D86, the line to apply would be around the block with candidates that would happily take far less than their predecessor. Nobody, including the US President is irreplaceable. Consider that a teaching position is 9 months/year at the most, and the salaries paid. Compare that to what a similarly qualified person earns at a corporation where they daily have to prove their worth. The taxpayers are not contributing to their pension either. My co-workers take classes to keep their skills honed, and do not get a salary increase for it. They get to KEEP THEIR JOB! And, if they are unsatisfied with their position, they seek one elsewhere. We must be mindful of the repercussions of irresponsible decisions made today and how they will affect us and the generations to come. Just do the math! D86 teachers would be well advised to stay under the radar.
traileraide July 22, 2014 at 01:47 pm
Linda Burke July 16, 2014 at 07:17 am
As for the teachers' offered contract, of course it is and should be subject to tough negotiations.Read More That's what collective bargaining means. However, the board's proposal would make us the extreme outlier in the Chicago area, and not in a good way. Its aim is to boot teachers out of the middle class, where they deserve to be. (Teachers don't get rich, but they should be middle class. How can they inspire our kids to seek and value education, if they personify an underclass of temporary labor?) It bears repeating that NO other Chicago-area high school district, and almost no other district of any kind, has attempted this. Folks, if it sounds too good to be true, it is. You get what you pay for. We can't be the worst paid district in Chicagoland, with a board majority that goes out of their way to insult and demean our teachers, and still offer an education that rivals the best of the best. Not only is this a moral issue, but middle class homeowners can't afford to pretend that school comparisons don't exist or don't matter. War on public education equals war on the middle class.
Ken Wilson July 21, 2014 at 09:07 am
I agree, Dr. Skoda is a high school teacher with over 30 years of worthy, exceptional service andRead More experience. He is clearly articulate and an intellectual who volunteers his time to serve as School Board President and cares deeply about children. It is understood in a community of over 100,000 some will attack his good intentions and disrespect the fact he is a teacher. There is a very small minority of High School Stalkers, some have been hangin out at the high school for longer than 20 years after they graduated. Yes, kind of like the old football quarterback from 1970s trying to finagle an invite to prom. I guess all this talk of War may brand the Union Education First movement (UEF) of bitter individuals as a Hate Group. Or so the word was at the public pool last weekend. We appreciate Dr. Skoda's .30 years of service as a teacher to children and his efforts to raise the bar on Illinois' public education.
Steve Gilmer July 21, 2014 at 01:53 pm
Linda Burke July 15, 2014 at 09:29 pm
This is also interesting--the board majority tried to keep the location of the press conference aRead More secret from fellow board members and the public. Chicago Tribune reporter Annemarie Mannion published a short piece several days before the press conference indicating the day and time of the event, but not the place. I'm sure her article wasn't expected by the board majority--they obviously intended a complete surprise, with no advance notice at all. That way, they obviously hoped, they could keep their shenanigans secret from the public except for the version they wanted us to hear, while using a public place supported by public funds to promote their message. Fortunately, there was a person with a conscience who revealed the location of the meeting. One newspaper account of the press conference shows Mr. Corcoran holding up a sophisticated graphic obviously used to advocate for his extreme anti-teacher agenda. Who paid for the PR professionals to design this material? We taxpayers, of course. We will also pick up the tab for the district-wide propaganda mailing planned by the same four board members.
Linda Burke July 15, 2014 at 09:44 pm
This is interesting--the board majority wanted NO advance notice of the press conference to fellowRead More board members or the public. Days before the event, however, Chicago Tribune reporter Annemarie Mannion published a notice of the date and time, but not the place. Reporters were ordered not to reveal the location of the press conference. Fortunately, we were informed by an individual with a conscience, making it possible for concerned residents to attend the event, or try to. As you know, the taxpayers who tried to attend were arrogantly turned away. And to think this is the board majority that promised transparency, honesty, and accountability. We are obviously getting just the opposite.
Linda Burke July 15, 2014 at 10:02 pm
Oops, I didn't think my earlier comment had posted, so I posted the same idea twice. Sorry aboutRead More that. I am amazed that some people actually LIKE and support the devious tactics of this board majority--the secrecy, the dishonesty, the waste of taxpayer dollars, the contempt for taxpayers. Fortunately more and more district residents are beginning to question. Can't we all agree that if they want to hold a secret meeting and exclude the public, they should pay for their own private venue, their own PR consultants, and their own political mailings?
Credit: Hinsdale South Vespa Twitter
Dick Flesher July 3, 2014 at 12:36 pm
Teachers should perform well. Just what the performance criteria encompasses is just one aspect ofRead More judging excellence. Be careful about tying performance to standardized test scores.
Rick Cazzato July 3, 2014 at 10:51 pm
I do not consider my son's teachers guests in my community.
Rick Cazzato July 3, 2014 at 10:54 pm
I do not consider my son's teachers guests in my community. I value them like family. They teachRead More my son and work with him in the classroom and the athletic field from 8 am to 6 pm Monday thru Friday, and on Saturdays.
David William June 27, 2014 at 01:37 pm
I moved to the Hinsdale District 86 area over 5 decades ago because of the quality of the schools.Read More Now I’m reading that the new school board has done more damage to the school district in one year then all of the gains that have been made over the past 50 years. In reading Dick Skoda’s 6/24/14 media release on “THE BOARD’S GOAL FOR TEACHER’S CONTRACT NEGOTIATIONS”, it seems that the board majority wants to implement a merit pay system. Merit pay seems to be performance based, but how do you quantify the impact that every teacher, sponsor and coach has on the lives of the thousands of students that they see. Do you use test scores for their merit pay? What about the remedial English teacher, who’s taught students just to read or write. The lower level math teacher, who teaches students basic addition and subtraction. The special education teacher who teaches their students how to function in today’s society. The physical education teacher who teaches the students how to live longer, happier lives through daily exercise along with the added benefit of higher academic performance because of the proven fact that exercise helps you learn. The new board majority has talked about fiscal responsibility, but has spent tens of thousands of dollars on hiring a consulting firm to find corruption. None has been reported. The board has spent tens of thousands of dollars hiring a firm to look for hundreds of students who attend District 86 schools and don’t live in the district. They found a few, most of which were homeless. The board has greatly increased the number of administrators, costing the taxpayers thousands of dollars. They have also increased the class size by not hiring teachers to accommodate the student growth in the schools. After running a successful business for 33 years, I felt it was necessary to hire the best quality employees. If I needed to pay these quality employees more than my competition, I did. I was shocked to read that board member Ed Corcoran says that teachers should be so honored to work in such a prestigious school district that they should be paid below market rates. How can we continue to attract quality educators by paying them less than the competition? My three children all graduated from the Hinsdale District 86 schools. They had fantastic teachers and all of them received a great education. How many of these great teachers will we lose if the board gets their way to pay them below market rates? Hinsdale District 86 schools have been rated at the top of the state for test scores and education along with New Trier and Stevenson. How long will it take for board president Dick Skoda, a retired Morton West teacher, to reduce the quality of education and test scores to the level of Morton school district 201?
Cindy Novak June 19, 2014 at 11:45 am
I knew we could agree on something!!
Dick Flesher June 20, 2014 at 04:09 pm
It has been documented that years of service and advanced degrees are important indicators ofRead More effective teaching and have served our education community well for many decades.
Linda Burke June 22, 2014 at 09:10 am
In case anyone is interested in the facts on what teachers are requesting in the current negotiationRead More process, here is a place to look: search the Doings Hinsdale website for the article by Kimberly Fornek titled "District 86 Board approves salary for support staff, continues teacher negotiations." It should appear in print this coming Thursday. With all things factored in including benefits, the teachers' request is for a 1% salary increase. The board's offer would reduce every teacher's compensation, a move not attempted by ANY other Chicago-area school high school or unit district. Mr. Corcoran would have us believe we can continue to attract the best teachers with insulting treatment and cuts in compensation so that we pay less than neighboring school districts. Here, I call on common sense principles: if it sounds too good to be true, it is. You get what you pay for. Less is not more. This is true of education as it is in life. Thanks to reporter Kimberly Fornek for a complete and accurate presentation of the facts.
Barry Allen June 17, 2014 at 08:29 am
Linda, any idea what the normal daily rate for someone at that level (school CFO) would be on aRead More consulting basis (not a permanent employee)?
Theresa Phan June 17, 2014 at 11:59 am
The teachers union is making a big mistake by threatening this strike. They are already very wellRead More paid. The vast majority of parents will have no sympathy for them if they decide to strike.
Linda Burke June 17, 2014 at 06:31 pm
Hi Barry. I believe that $750 a day is the going rate for this type of professional hired for anRead More interim position. I think that other D 86 interim employees, e.g. Gerry Yeggy and John Nieween (sp?) were paid the same. But I'm not sure--this would make a good FOIA request. The board majority's hiring of Roger Kempa at that salary, to sleep through board meetings, was such a blatant quid pro quo that even I was surprised by it. Hi Theresa. No one wants the teachers to go on strike, least of all the teachers. Let's not forget that teachers are not alien beings--some of us parents ARE teachers, and many more of us have loved ones who are. There is a lot of misleading "information" out there about teacher compensation. In reality, D 86 has a long history of fiscal conservatism, with per pupil expenditures thousands of dollars lower than our closest academic competition, including New Trier Township. The present board is anti-teacher, not fiscally conservative. They are spending taxpayer dollars like there's no tomorrow on more administrators including crony hires, expensive outside consultants, and perhaps most outrageous, ongoing legal fees related to the Barrett lawsuit. But this posting is already getting too long. It's just that they give me so much material.
Denise Stout June 8, 2014 at 11:42 am
Dear Linda, Your comments are worth noting...I would like to hear from those you have accused ofRead More "cronyism"? I trust there is more to be revealed. Just a short comment from me as Sunday is my day to reflect....with the huge budget to manage for Hinsdale Central High School I am in favor of bringing in business experienced managers. If we spent money for a qualified Recruiter to hire experienced job seekers that sounds fair. Recruiters make hiring more professional and someone from Kraft Foods gets hired what was their job at Kraft? Most likely it was business management. Kraft is a well run and respected Illinois company that hires many of our local graduates....that is a plus for me. Maybe outsiders can examine our cost structure to see how they can streamline costs for the school and benefit the teachers. By they way ...Kraft pays huge corporate taxes to support pensions and benefits of teachers. On another note, The amount of money teachers spend from their union dues to elect favorable politicians....could make up a huge deficit in Springfield in their paychecks and pensions...too bad the majority never have a say in how their money is spent...they trust their elected leadership to make those financial decisions...and we know they have overspent the teachers money without their approval. I guess there is fingers to point in all directions....as for me...I will wait to see how the negotiations continue on these contracts. You as a resident understand that the taxpayers of Hinsdale are also footing the bill for the Hinsdale Middle School repairs in the millions for a problem with deadly mold. Just out of curiosity ...why did the Superintendent Renee Schuster and Kevin Russell, who was assistant superintendent for District 181 resign and abandon the kids at a time when their was a serious crisis effecting their students....that kind of disloyalty is disturbing to me when you are taking home salaries over $200,000.00 a year. Maybe having business experience in handling crisis management is a good idea for future hires. Poor examples of leadership may be part of the reason the current Hinsdale High School Board finds it necessary to bring in people outside the institutions of established power. The residents of Hinsdale have born the burden of patronage from the Teachers Union which has been part of the landscape in our schools leading to increasing tax burdens to make up for governmental inefficiencies. I wish I could run my household that way...spending my way out of debt. As for me...let the negotiations be transparent....the parents will be watching carefully how both sides handle them. I trust the people of Hinsdale...they are smart, informed and thoughtful! If our fine teachers do not want to work with the so called "dreadful" elected Hinsdale Central School Board, I say goodbye and goodluck! Thank you Denise Stout
Linda Burke June 8, 2014 at 12:38 pm
Hi Denise. First, I don't know anything about District 181, beyond what anyone can see in theRead More papers. So I have no comment on 181. I'm only active in 86. You reference the "smart, informed, and thoughtful" citizens of Hinsdale. Smart and thoughtful they are, but to be informed on what happens in the schools, it's important to go to board meetings. Fortunately more people are doing just that. The papers don't report everything. WHere has any teacher said they don't want to work under the "dreadful" elected school board? There is no such statement. Why not read what the teachers really did have to say, also published in Patch? Evidently, some people trust the present board majority to the point of approving hundreds of thousands in extra spending on administration and outside consultants, even as we are cutting faculty and downgrading our academic program. Yes, Mr. Corcoran has argued that hiring a more expensive CFO with no school experience would somehow release more funds for education. But that's not what the CFO himself has to say. At the most recent Finance Committee meeting, which I attended, it was interesting to hear that CFO explain how each "building," what some of us call schools, would receive exactly the revenue it had last year. The CPI is up, enrollment is up, spending on administration is way up, time and money were wasted on the outrageous Barrett settlement, but each "building" will have exactly what they did last year--for education, clearly a low priority. This plan also equals program cuts, given a rising CPI, rising enrollment, and so much funding diverted away from education. Some people are too busy to keep up with all this, some people evidently approve--but fortunately, many others are beginning to question.
Ken Wilson June 14, 2014 at 04:48 pm
There is a distinct difference in opinion. One opinion suggests the state of Illinois publicRead More employees are performing at a high level of administrative fiscal oversight and "school experience" is a sought after criteria when seeking someone highly skilled to perform valued oversight and active management of a $100,000M public school budget everyone is trying to get their sticky little, fat fingered hands on. The other opinion suggests someone who has survived in the most demanding, high performing areas of corporate finance may have something to bring to D86 in terms of best practices regarding $100M in spend and another $60M in reserves. Do you want to recycle the same old stale ideas and policies typical that provide $20M of D86 cash reserves were earning less than .25 interest or bring someone in proven to be successful and a winner in the most competitive of corporate environments with the expectation they bring that same energy, can do attitude, and financial best practices to D86? Are the best, brightest and highest performing financial CFOs limited to currently working for the schools or is it possible exceptional talent that will excel in the role can be found in the private sector. You know you are important when your toady has their own toady. Now if may take Baum and Gilbane a while to get some good no-bid contracts or influence this new head of the money purse. In the mean time others can still seek influence and try to donate thousands of dollars to a couple board members like the Perkins architect firm's donation and the teachers' union donations to board members that in turn vote on their contracts. Let's hope this new CFO is active in establishing ethics policies that seek to diminish this apparent conflict of interest between board members getting cash from vendors and employees and then voting on those same contracts. When they say it is not about the money, guess what it is about the money.
Linda Burke June 6, 2014 at 07:14 am
A poster has suggested that "Carla Feinkind" is a pseudonym. Of course, this personRead More posted under a pseudonym, like most supporters of the present board majority. This shows how embarrassed, and how desperate, the this group must be. Carla, of course, is the real name of a real person, a great Hinsdalean, and a dynamic leader in several local philanthropies. No one gives any more to the community than Carla, and to insult her in this manner is shameful. The poster must be ashamed of what s/he is saying, in commenting under a pseudonym. I have a suggestion for Patch. Permit commenting only under the real name of the poster. Nothing of value would be lost under this rule, and much would be gained--accountability. We would also hear a lot less from supporters of the present board majority and their war on teachers.
Linda Burke June 6, 2014 at 07:15 am
If you can't post under your real name, you must be ashamed of what you have to say.
Ken Wilson June 6, 2014 at 07:54 am
it is likely those that have never served with military distinction and seen the consequences of WARRead More have little and a diminished respect for the term and tend to use it as rhetoric loosely. As we move past Memorial Day and toward Independence Day let's remember the true cost of war as measured in the blood and treasure of those that gave their lives for the Republic we live in today.
Patrick Scott June 3, 2014 at 10:19 am
With a proposed increase well above the cost of living at 5.45% increase across the spectrum that'sRead More more than Obama is giving seniors on social security where we've gotten less than 2% this year and about 5% total increase in the past 5 years while my real inflation is much higher due to higher taxes(66% state increase), food (50%), utilities, gasoline (more than 100% since Obama), Toll roads (WOW!!!) etc. It's really too bad that the real issues are not being discussed with the public...certainly we have an elected board and the teachers have their representatives to negotiate...but when all is said and done, it's me the public that is left with the contract to fund. With an average salary of $110k per year for a 9+ month job that's pretty high in anyone pay scale nationwide. I know that many teachers work more than just a class room day and many are wonderful role models for the students, and at D 86 their pay/benefits reflect this trust. What really is vexing is the way the State is handling, IMHO, the teachers pension fund. If anything needs addressing it's the teachers pension fund...while this is not an issue in this local contract, the teachers really need to manage their fund instead of it being a political football. I hope their statewide union will one day support candidates that support this issue rather than the money used to keep in office candidates hawking their retirement funds. I wish both side "bon chance" with their talks, it's the kids future they're playing with. If the teachers do go on strike, I hope to see them displaying their grievance on 55th and 75th Sts, be true to the tradition of "strike actions". If they vote to strike early then settle before the fall term begins not using students as hostages particular seniors that need quality educational time to move along into their next step in life.
Abe June 4, 2014 at 07:03 am
Does the drama ever end with this district?
Denise Stout June 7, 2014 at 11:35 am
A Strike could bring some fresh teachers to our school district...maybe we can consider convertingRead More to a Charter School and get a better education. With contract negotiations open for change....bring them where they don't want to go! Observing these shenanigans for 30 years in Hinsdale...we finally have a responsible School Board...not like the ones who covered up the scandal with the predator Basketball Coach Mueller now serving a 32 year prison term....they knew about it...but took no action to protect the kids from this man by reporting it to the police. 40 teachers testified in his defense at his trial...again...leaving the kids vulnerable! This scandal resulted in the Principal, Dr Furgeson resigning and the Superintendent, Dr Roger Miller resigning. They knew about this predator but did nothing to protect our kids. If not for a courageous Hinsdale Police Officer on duty at the school we would still never have known. It took an outsider to reveal the depth of this depravity! This is the true story: DuPage County State's Atty. Joseph Birkett was critical Tuesday of administrators in Hinsdale High School District 86 who were alerted in 2000 to allegations of sexual misconduct between Mueller and a student, but did not contact authorities. Instead, the school officials conducted their own investigation and determined the charges were without merit. According to state law, it is a crime if school, health or social work officials do not report allegations of sexual assault of a minor. The disgraceful teachers who supported this teacher...reminds me that a School Board and the community have to be diligent in protecting our kids...and our tax dollars.
Patch File Photo
Dawn Urbanek June 10, 2014 at 09:01 pm
We have to make people aware that our State is run by public employee Unions and we need court casesRead More like today which ruled that the California Teacher Tenure rules are unconstitutional so that we can change laws and vote people out of office who do not represent the interests of the public who pay the taxes.
Spencer James July 11, 2014 at 03:19 pm
Something that is interesting to note is that high school grads are going to four year universitiesRead More and studying subject that isn't marketable. While on the other hand you have people getting vocational training at vocational schools that essentially guarantees them a job out of school that will make them 'x' amount of money. So it isn't that college degrees are worthless, some are. It is also said that sometimes trade school is the right choice! Spencer James | <a href='http://www.newmexicodentalassisting.com/' > http://www.newmexicodentalassisting.com/home.html</a>
Spencer James July 11, 2014 at 03:20 pm
Something that is interesting to note is that high school grads are going to four year universitiesRead More and studying subject that isn't marketable. While on the other hand you have people getting vocational training at vocational schools that essentially guarantees them a job out of school that will make them 'x' amount of money. So it isn't that college degrees are worthless, some are. It is also said that sometimes trade school is the right choice! Spencer James | http://www.newmexicodentalassisting.com
Hinsdale Central senior Chris Borg and the Kentucky Armory Club shirt that got him suspended.
Teri D. Springer May 17, 2014 at 02:37 pm
Good for Borg for, ummm, sticking to his guns.....(sorry).....
mark ottenfeld May 19, 2014 at 06:52 pm
He can also exercise his first amendment rights on gun violence to school children, the war, NSARead More abuse, infrastructure, the well being of our soldiers, chilhood obesity,healthcare, education costs, GMO's,etc...lots of great, important opportunities for free speech.
Nancy Murphy May 15, 2014 at 01:31 pm
Hinsdale District 68 has some of the most outrageously overpaid teachers anywhere. Almost 60% areRead More pulling down $100,000 or more for working only 9 months. Salaries are listed here: http://bit.ly/1sOraY3
A Kentucky Armory Club T-shirt got Chris Borg, 18, of Hinsdale, suspended.
Linda Burke May 15, 2014 at 07:32 pm
to quote Mr. Pipal, "Freedom of speech is not a 'catch all' right to express what you want toRead More express anywhere you want to express it." I am actually familiar with the first amendment and even with some of the case law related to the first amendment as it applies to students in their high school. Rightly or wrongly, there have been limits approved on free speech for students in the high school setting. A first amendment case could be made for no dress code anywhere. I respect the consistency and zero hypocrisy of that position. If we allow for any dress code within a high school, then the image of a Kalashnikov rifle is not appropriate for student attire. Yes, that is common sense. I think this young student has many promising qualities, but he also chose to defy a reasonable request made by a teacher, within his high school, without being willing to accept the consequences. He obviously has some growing up to do, and the best way for that to happen is for me to terminate my contribution to his fifteen minutes of fame for this behavior.
Patrick Scott May 15, 2014 at 08:08 pm
While many have "feeling" about this issue, the dress code is not that specific...onceRead More again one has assumed a lot or was in contact with the teacher/administrator to know how they created the initial decision on this. Student dress code is a moving target...one judge/administrator allows students to wear another country's national emblem while blocking students from wearing the US Flag on their clothes claiming that in so doing the students wearing US material will incite a riot...now that's a legal liberal stretch. Another Judge decides that uniforms in public school is enforceable. Lots of twists and turns by judges. Apparently no one decision fits all situations and I guess that's how the 1st Amendment works.
Bob Vey May 31, 2014 at 09:01 am
As Chris said in the article he wore the shirt "at least 10 times" before & nothingRead More was ever said or done about it ; that sets a Precedence. Why all of a sudden did they decide to do something about it???? Schools are there to Educate the students as Rick Pipal has stated on May 15 at 6:22 P.M. What ever happened to tolerance???? There is way to much Political Correctness in this Country!!! No matter what you look like, say, or do, it's going to Offend someone, somewhere. Political Correctness is making people to Damn Sensitive!!!! People have to learn to grow the hell up & toughen up!!!
Linda Burke May 15, 2014 at 10:09 am
uh-oh . . . dissing U of I? Michigan? Wisconsin? Fighting words in these parts. No wonder "KenRead More Wilson" prefers to hide behind a pseudonym. In fact, many public universities rival the best of the privates, especially in certain fields--this can be verified by data in U.S. News et al. However, for historical reasons, the top private universities have more money, the oxygen of education. They are centuries older than the publics (many of which were started by Abraham Lincoln), thus having more time to accumulate social capital as well. Worst of all, public universities are much more vulnerable to "cut everything, starve the beast" ideologues of the "Ken Wilson" stripe. The top University of California campuses, to give a prime example, have suffered mightily in recent years, along with middle class families who are going into debt to afford the higher tuition resulting from loss of state support. A great public education system is foundational to a middle class society. War on public education--and public school teachers--equals war on the middle class.
Ken Wilson May 15, 2014 at 10:31 am
Board Member Planson, in public at the December 2013 Open Board meeting, noted she was personallyRead More aware of two residency fraud cases at HCHS and inquired to the vendor why they were not on the list. Vetting the list and potential shortcomings with the list. Appropriately so the disposition of that specific inquiry is not made public. I am hopeful any students as minors who have engaged in residency fraud are not made public or known to the public, thus it is difficult to clearly ascertain how many of the cases have been "handled". There has been an escalation of violence within the D86 schools as discussed at the last Board meeting, I had heard one of the students involved had been dismissed from another school district earlier in the year for a similar offense. Whether the family moved, paid tuition or engaged in residency fraud has yet and should be determined.
Linda Burke May 15, 2014 at 10:45 am
We spent $27,500, and for what? If non-residents are already known to staff, the problem, assumingRead More there is one, could have been handled in house. Whatever this is, it isn't fiscally conservative.
John Jasper April 28, 2014 at 11:00 am
Ms Park. You are correct in that the current D86 contract states that the teachers belong to aRead More professional association. I erroneously referred to a union on the basis of “if it walks like a …, looks like a …, and talks like a … it must be a …”. If not a Union then why is there a collective bargaining agreement and representation by a Union official? Are the veiled attacks on certain D86 board members (including intimidation of their children) those of an association or labor union acting to maintain its own privileged position as a controlling body? John Jasper
Linda Burke April 28, 2014 at 11:37 am
Mr. Jasper, you ended your posting with two very serious accusations. We community members, not theRead More teachers, have been speaking up about current board majority abuses. It is the present majority and their supporters, not the teachers, who have a history of intimidation against anyone who challenges their agenda. If you have no evidence to support these very serious allegations, you must retract them and apologize.
Ken Wilson April 28, 2014 at 05:23 pm
Clearly some bloggers have an inherent animas toward teachers. Complainers' Row attacks the teacherRead More Dr. Skoda who taught in the public schools as a High School teacher, at a local district in excess of 30 years, dedicated his very life to the education of our youth and now brings his life experiences and educational expertise to the School Board for a 3rd term. Stop attacking the respected teacher Dr. Rick Skoda and start supporting our Board and schools. Negativity and complaining are for those with a defeatist mentality, positivity and support are for those committed to a can-do attitude. The school we aspire to be in our academic league, is the number one High School in the world located in Beijing, China. It is pretty shallow to be shouting from the rooftops for being the 10th best educational system in a state with the 37th best educational system in the United States a country with the 23rd best educational system in the G30 Industrialized Nations. I mean really, there are 365 days in a year and a student in the United States is lucky to be in school 180 days, less than half the year. Now we all support exploratory activities beyond education in the class room, but is being out of school more than in the school any given year acceptable? I heard the "stoners' club" was actually passing out a button voicing support for less school days not more. Perhaps a populous message akin to a chicken in every pot, but that is why they are the child and remain hopeful the parent has sounder judgment. While I remain hopeful those students driven to learn and excel at a high level competing globally, remain supportive of adding more educational days to the school calendar.
A parent April 26, 2014 at 09:02 am
I couldn't help but to do some comparison between Stevenson and DHS as a resident in Deerfield,Read More since district has put up the news on the website. Operational spending per student is $16,839 in Stevenson and $20,821 in DHS. STEM ranking, #37 for Stevenson and #145 for DHS. I have been very disappointed in science teaching in DHS. Now I believe that there is some truth in the rankings.
Ying Shen April 27, 2014 at 10:05 am
WLA May 1, 2014 at 07:18 am
I don't think magnet schools should be included. All the other schools have to take all students inRead More their district, magnet schools can pick and choose best students.
Tammy Prentiss, the newly appointed assistant superintendent of special education for Hinsdale high school district.
Ken Wilson April 23, 2014 at 09:27 pm
A strong hire, all the more power in exceeding expectations. The community is excited to see D86Read More take ownership of their special ed program in house as opposed to the outsourcing model, and is grateful to have attracted and hired a leader suitable for the challenge.
Sue Pircon April 9, 2014 at 12:56 pm
Interesting letter, but I question the timing and what the school board really intends with itsRead More publication. Are they as interested in "transparency" as they claim? Or is it more about damage control? It all sounds awesome but do they really mean it? Through a recent FOIA request I obtained an email sent from Board Member Ed Corcoran, a member of the negotiation team, to a community member and his comments reveal a very different point of view. He stated "As a person elected by the taxpayers, I hope you understand your duty and to advocate for only 2 parties. The student and the taxpayers. With the excellent work conditions and benefits teachers realized in District 86, the salary levels would be lowered substantially by market forces. Our salary and benefits should be lower than other districts due to the great parents and great students and excellent work environment/conditions - not to mention the prestige our teachers enjoy in the education community. There are large numbers of unemployed and highly qualified teachers. so it should be obvious to anyone that we should not be paying above market wages with taxpayer's hard earned money." ~ Ed Corcoran This doesn't sound like someone who "respects and appreciates" our teachers. It sounds more like someone willing to replace them with folks off the unemployment line.
Ken Wilson April 9, 2014 at 01:58 pm
Yes, it is an irrefutable fact, generally someone would be willing to accept lower compensation toRead More work in a safe, clean environment blessed with nice working conditions. Two of my close friends work in the Chicago Public Schools. The only jobs they could get after graduation. She is escorted to her car after school in fear of rape or being assaulted again. To work in D86, how much less would she trade for a better environment, it is something, the exact amount the market determines. I think Corcoran's lesson was a simple one related to the widely accepted work in terms of supply and demand theory of Alexander Marshall it is the work of Marshall that was the context for Corcoran's response. I would not belittle folks on the unemployment line, plenty of good people get let go for various sound reasons, as a community we should help them get back on their feet. I think Vice President Corcoran did address the "context" of the citation above at the Board meeting in December. The context was from a pure supply and demand macro-economic theory. The same meeting he admonished and asked for an apology to a vulgar reply he got to the correspondence attacking him and his family. I'd have to see the tape again from the Board meeting to summarize his exact response to a question regarding the context of the letter referenced on this blog, but that is pretty close. I am enlightened the two parties (Union Rep and Board)are finding ways to work effectively together. The Union has one mission = Get the best deal for the members that pay their dues for that purpose. The Board as the counter party = Get the best deal for the students and taxpayers while respecting the right of the union members as their counter party in negotiations. I am confident smart people can find a deal that works for everyone and this unanimous Board approved guiding principles are a great start to collaboration.
Robert Kearney April 9, 2014 at 09:32 pm
The above noted "open letter" to the D86 community, publicly setting forth our SchoolRead More Board's guiding principles when negotiating a new labor agreement with our teachers, is indeed laudable. However, the privately held beliefs of School Board member Ed Corcoran, as revealed within Mrs. Sue Pircon's post, is quite disconcerting. The content of Mr. Corcoran's email leads me to question the predisposed mindset he will bring to contract discussions, and, whether he is capable of negotiating in good faith. Mr. Ken Wilson attempts to explain one of Mr. Corcoran's comments as being innocuous and guided by Alexander Marshall's economic theory pertaining to the "law of supply and demand." First, how can Mr. Wilson profess to know Mr. Corcoran's frame of reference when Corcoran made his comment? Second, Mr. Corcoran's assertion that our teachers can be replaced by unemployed teachers will no doubt be received as both insulting and condescending by our teachers, and, it certainly does not set the tone for harmonious negotiations. Rather than contributing Mr. Corcoran's comment to Alexander Marshall, I propose that for a different perspective, we look to a quote made by H. Jackson Brown Jr., a renowned American author. This quote being "Our character is what we do (or say) when we think no one is looking." It is, therefore, my opinion, that Mr. Corcoran's attitude toward our teachers is best represented by the content of his email rather than any utterance he conveys in public. Additionally, it is no secret that the Board's majority and their supporters believe our school district should be run on a business model. With this in mind, I would like to cite a quote regarding the teaching profession made by Peter F. Drucker, a modern business leader who is recognized as inventing the concept known as management by objects. Specifically, Mr. Drucker proclaims that "Teaching is the only major occupation of man for which we have not yet developed tools that make an average person capable of competence and performance, In teaching we rely on the 'naturals', the ones who somehow know how to teach." Clearly, D86 is blessed with exceptional "natural" teachers, as manifested by independent reviews that have consistently ranked our schools as being among the very best at both the State and National levels. As such, our teachers warrant a salary and benefit package commensurate with their demonstrated superior performance in instructing our children; assures us of their continued involvement within our educational community, and, maintains D86 as a highly desirable/attractive destination for exceptional teachers willing to depart tenured positions elsewhere and thus bring their talents into our classrooms.
Orange County Sheriff's deputies conduct a bomb sweep at San Clemente High School earlier this month. | Patch photo credit: Penny Arévalo.
David Greenberg March 28, 2014 at 11:46 am
"Virtual walls"? Geezus... GPS spoofing is but one way around the geofence. The otherRead More is simply walking up to someone and saying "HEY *(&*(^^#&*(Y($*() !!!!!" Or use a different app created with a bogus email account... *sigh*. Sticks and stones people... sticks and stones... Walk it off and move on...
Stu Pidasso March 28, 2014 at 12:37 pm
thats for sure, this country is turning into a bunch of pansies!!
Stu Pidasso March 28, 2014 at 12:39 pm
my kid tells me that his buddy who lives over in Europe has a math book that shows a drawing of anRead More obese American eating a Cheeseburger with Plumbers Ass , as if we are a bunch of slobs over here!!! Is that nice or what???
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