Board Meeting Highlights

November 12, 2018

Complete meeting packet




  • School Finance – Frank Panzica reported – Discussed student fees - proposal is for small increases to two fees and to eliminate the credit card fee. Board will vote in December. Discussed moving the Audit Update from November to December due to changes in some regulations. Presentation from legal counsel on property tax appeal interventions. There has been a shift over time from large property tax appeals appearing at the Property Tax Appeal Board (PTAB) to now also include the Circuit Court. Committee discussed specific proposals for setting fund balance guidelines – minimum of 40% and maximum of 65%. When maximum is approached, the Board will discuss options for reduction at a public meeting. Next meeting – Dec 10th at 8:00 am
  • Facilities Development – Alice Schaff reported – Highcrest Learning Commons and Kindergarten Enrichment were discussed. Next meeting – Dec 10th at 8:00 am


  • CRC – Jon Cesaretti reported – CRC is looking at personalized learning practices. There was a great presentation at the meeting from Leap Innovations. Next meeting – December 3rd at 7:00 pm
  • WCSEAEllen Sternweiler reported – Planning is underway for Summer Enrichment Program at Romona and WJHS June 19 – Juy23. Next meeting – March 18th
  • Superintendent Search Update – Lisa Schneider-Fabes – There are 39 superintendent applicants. This week the search firm will recommend seven for first round interviews with the Board in closed session during the week of November 26. Then, two or three will be asked back for interviews with the Stakeholder Committee the week of December 10. Members of the Stakeholder Committee are: Parents – Julie Adrianopoli and Lauren Litchfield; Community members – Keith Dronen and Pamela Martin; SSU representatives – Cathy Peach and Lisa Winter; WEA representatives – Linda Diekman and Maura Whiston; and administrators – Heather Glowacki (committee chair), Becky Littmann, and Kelly Jackson.
  • Legislative update – Tracy Kearney – Illinois Senate and House will review bills next week. The expectation is a push to override the Governor’s veto of two bills – one to provide a mandatory minimum teacher salary of $40,000 and the other to mandate 150 minutes of PE per week.


Written Communication

Announcements from the Superintendent

School Board Members DayNovember 15th is “School Board Members Day” in Illinois. We thank our local Board of Education members for their commitment in providing local governance for our public schools.

Parent Teacher Conferences – District 39’s Parent Teacher conferences last week were very well attended.  Conferences provide an opportunity for families and teachers to discuss student progress and provide students guidance on how to reflect and set goals.

Illinois School Report Cards - Following ISBE requirements, the District’s local achievement data was presented in detail during the October 22nd Board of Education meeting. On October 31st, ISBE released all Illinois School’s Report Cards. This announcement and posting the information on the District website meets the annual requirement for each school district. Anyone needing a hard copy of a school report card can contact the Office of Curriculum and Instruction.

5Essentials Survey - Another annual requirement from ISBE is the 5Essentials survey. In December, parents, teachers and 4th-8th grade students will have an opportunity to participate.  The surveys gather data related to five indicators including: Effective Leaders, Collaborative Teachers, Involved Families, Supportive Environments, and Ambitious Instruction.

Annual Business

  • New Trier Township Eighth Grade Survey Report Mrs. Jackson – A brand new Township 8th Grade Survey was administered last spring to 8th grade students across the Township, and 915 students participated. The survey focuses primarily on connections made in school and preparedness for 21st Century skills.
  • 2019-2020 Student Fees Mrs. CripsinoThis is the first draft of recommended fee changes for the 2019-20 school year.Fees will remain primarily the same, with two small increases and the elimination of the credit card fee.
  • Long Term Enrollment ProjectionsDr. LechnerOverall, enrollments are stable; there was a 10-year peak in enrollment in 2015. Since 2015 there have been slight declines in 2016, 2107, and 2018 as very large classes moved through WJHS.As a result, projections are for slight declines through 2022.
  • Highcrest Construction Change Order Mrs. Crispino – A recommended change order requires Board approval. Because construction on the new HMS learning commons begins late spring, a delay in the already scheduled parking lot repair is recommended.It should occur when new construction will not damage the parking lot surface.


Board Resolutions

1.   Illinois Association of School Boards (IASB) Representation - As discussed at SFC, the Board considered eight resolutions proposed by IASB and decided to send a representative to be appointed by the Board President to the meeting to vote on behalf of the Board. Board voted to authorize the representative to oppose #2 (which incorporated #1 and #3) and to support all other resolutions.

2.  Wilmette School District #39 Board of Education Resolution Authorizing Intervention in Property Tax AppealsAs discussed at SFC, approval of an updated resolution authorizing intervention in property tax assessment appeals in both the Property Tax Appeal Board and the Circuit Court of Cook County is recommended. This resolution would establish standard D39 practices.

3.   Resolution Establishing Fund Balance Goals- As discussed at the SFC, a new approach to fund balances is warranted. In January 2011, the Board adopted its first fund balance resolution establishing a 30% minimum. Since that time a review of cash flow needs indicated a 35% minimum is necessary to avoid borrowing. A new 40% minimum would provide a safety net for State of Illinois unknown fiscal concerns, like the pension cost shift. Next the Board discussed the idea of an upper limit. This limit would require Board review whenever 65% fund balances were reached.

The following items were pulled from the Consent Agenda: Board of Education Policies 2:240, 4:10, 4:15, 4:16

The Consent Agenda was approved including the following:

The following were approved as amended: Board of Education Policies 2:240 and 4:15

The next meeting of the District 39 Board of Education will be on Monday,
December 17, 2018 at 7:00 PM at the Mikaelian Education Center.