District 150

richwoodsknights.org

Peoria District 150 is asking the community to hold the sophomore Richwoods High School football player injured Monday in thoughts and prayers.

Peoria Public Schools

Peoria Public Schools is implementing its heat schedule Tuesday through Thursday.

Peoria Teachers Get Two Year Contract

Oct 12, 2016
Tanya Koonce / Peoria Public Radio

The Board of Education for Peoria Public Schools voted Tuesday night to approve a new two-year contract with its teachers union. Teachers had overwhelmingly voted for approval Monday evening. The pact calls for a two-percent salary increase in each of the two years. That will add about two-million dollars annually to the school district’s budget.

The Peoria Public School Board approved a $179 million operating budget for this academic year. The District 150 spending plan factors in a $4.4 million operating deficit.

The deficit gap is an improvement from initial budget estimates, due to a slight increases in state funding.

Superintendent Sharon Kherat says they continue to cut where they can.

Cass Herrington / Peoria Public Radio

Peoria Public School students are enrolling for the new school year at several open registration events through mid-August. The new “hub” system aims to make the process quicker by computerizing all student paperwork, well before the first day of school.

But on Tues., the new enrollment process was a lengthier for Hispanic families who needed bilingual assistance.

ICC.edu

Illinois Central College is getting a $1.2 million dollar grant from the U.S. Department of Education. The money will pay for a new program in collaboration with Peoria District 150. Peoria Public Radio’s Tanya Koonce reports.

 

Peoria Public Schools could be forced to cut all extracurricular activities, from sports to clubs, if state funding doesn't come through in the fall.

Cass Herrington / Peoria Public Radio

Peoria Public School students are taking the end-of-the-year Northwest Evaluation Test, starting Monday.

The NWEA assessment is used to measure student performance by comparing scores with the baseline test at the beginning of the school year.

Trewyn K8 was the lowest scoring school in the district last year.

Peoria Public Radio’s Cass Herrington met an enthusiastic Trewyn fourth grader who’s urging her classmates to do better this year:

District 150 Approves Policy Addressing Nepotism

Apr 12, 2016
Cass Herrington / Peoria Public Radio

The Peoria Public School board is cracking down on nepotism -- or patronage or favoritism given to family members.

The board voted unanimously Monday in favor of adding a policy that aims to prevent situations where an employee would directly supervise a relative or spouse.

Board Vice President Rick Cloyd first proposed the policy in December. At that time, Cloyd said he’s seen problems arise in the district from supervisor-employee relationships that are too close to home. The new regulation requires board members to disclose relatives who work for the district.

Cass Herrington / Peoria Public Radio

Peoria School District 150 is handing out its annual Reduction in Force, or RIF notices. 60 teachers are receiving honorable discharge notices, and many part time and late-in-the-year-hires are also being released.

 

Dan Walther will be the newest member of the Peoria District 150 School Board. Walther won the 3rd district school board seat with 65% of the vote to Terry Spayer’s 35%.

Cass Herrington / Peoria Public Radio

The Peoria Public School board Tuesday approved a restructuring plan that would add or remove grades at 14 district schools.

However, the decision didn’t come without pushback from the public and several board members.

The 6-1 vote came down after two Glen Oak teachers expressed concerns about overcrowding at the school they say is already "over capacity." Under the plan, Glen Oak will add two grades to become a full K-8 school.

But, District spokesman Chris Copelan says enrollment would actually decrease, from its current 856 students to 770.

14 Peoria Public Schools Face Structural Changes

Mar 8, 2016
Cass Herrington / Peoria Public Radio

Peoria School District 150 is considering a vote tonight that would change grade level configurations at 14 schools.

Under the proposed plan, middle school would begin in 5th grade. Schools are currently structured in a “jagged” fashion, with multiple entry points of 4th, 5th and 6th grade.

The plan would add grades to some schools, like Glen Oak. Adding two grades and making it a K-8 school in an effort to eliminate disruptions in students’ social structure.

Andrew* / Flickr/Creative Commons

District 150 middle schoolers are getting a taste of culinary professions through a cooking competition this weekend.

Six Peoria Public School fifth graders are advancing to the next round of the Sodexo Future Chefs competition Saturday. 

The school district's Sodexo General Manager Mark Streamer says the program gives students early exposure to a viable career -- if that’s what they’re after.

“And if they can learn to love cooking, and learn to love performing and being in competitions, that’s something they can take with them all of their life,” Streamer said. 

Cass Herrington / Peoria Public Radio

Peoria Public School board members this morning were joined by political leaders, educators and parents advocating for a change to Illinois’ school funding formula.

District 150 Superintendent Sharon Desmoulin-Kherat says changing the formula to support financially struggling districts, like Peoria, would have profound effects on the community’s economic situation, and would narrow the gap in employment and income.

Center for Education Improvement

Peoria School District 150 is looking in other parts of the state to fill 30 vacancies for English Language Learner and bilingual teachers

District 150 used to regularly travel to Spain to recruit bilingual teachers through a state program. In an effort to reduce costs, the district is looking first in Illinois.

Becky Lindholm is the ELL Director for District 150. Lindholm says she doesn’t think they need to look further than Chicago.

ELITE delivers upbeat presentation to District 150 board

Feb 24, 2016
Cass Herrington / Peoria Public Radio

The program that aims to improve student behavior in District 150 presented some promising findings to the school board this week.

ELITE implemented its “school within a school” concept in Lincoln School and Harrison Community Learning Center  in December.

Two months later, both programs have seen significant changes in student behavior and academic performance. On the NWEA tests, 11 out of 15  students at Harrison and 12 out of 15 students at Lincoln improved reading scores. 

Cass Herrington / Peoria Public Radio

Peoria’s School District 150 administration heard concerns from parents, faculty and fellow board members about the final draft of the school reconfiguration plan Monday.

The plan aims to cut costs, create a more clear pattern of grade levels, and address issues of overcrowding in some school buildings while others are underutilized. Glen Oak Community Learning Center would move from K-6 to K-8. Superintendent Sharon Desmoulin-Kherat says it’s less disruptive for students:      

Peoria County Jail Records

A District 150 teacher has been placed on administrative leave following her arrest Tuesday.

28-year-old Veronica Dixon is a first-year 7th grade teacher at Trewyn K-8 School, the District said in an email to the media.

Peoria Public School’s spokesman says Dixon was arrested following a police investigation.

Records from Peoria County Jail say she was arrested on charges of sexual assault.

The District says it's cooperating with the Peoria Police officers, who are handling the investigation.

Cass Herrington / Peoria Public Radio

The University of Illinois College of Medicine in Peoria hosted a simulation day for local public school students on Saturday. 

The program run by medical students is called GUIDES. The acronym stands for Guide, Understand, Inform, Drive, Educate and Serve. It started in 2011, but this is the first year the initiative included kids from local high schools. 

The goal is to provide mentoring and hands-on medical learning to low income and minority students. 

cafemama / Flickr/Creative Commons

Peoria Public Schools and Illinois State University are partnering in an effort to attract and retain dedicated, culturally competent teachers.

The District 150 board approved to participate in the US Department of Education Urban Center Grant that would create a pipeline for ISU education students to complete their student teaching in District 150 schools.

Interim Superintendent Sharon Kherat says the hope is they’ll continue to teach in the district long after graduation.

'Real Men' share stories at Franklin Primary School

Jan 25, 2016
Cass Herrington / Peoria Public Radio

Franklin Primary School launched a new reading initiative that it hopes will catch on at other District 150 schools. The program "Real Men Read" aims to inspire literacy and leadership. 

About 30 volunteers, including parents, community leaders and high school seniors, visited the school last week to read to K-5 classrooms. One of the readers was former Peoria County Circuit Judge Glenn Collier.

As Collier read, he asked his audience questions -- it helps holds their attention.

 

 

District 150 surveying school community to track progress

Jan 13, 2016

Peoria Public School District 150 is surveying parents, students and teachers to get a bird’s-eye view of the district’s learning environment and culture.

The Illinois 5Essentials Survey is a statewide initiative with the Illinois State Board of Education, developed by the University of Chicago. District 150’s Chief Curriculum Officer Susan Grzanich says the survey allows members of school communities a chance to have their voices heard.

District 150 board approves spending to settle lawsuit

Jan 12, 2016
Cass Herrington / Peoria Public Radio

The Peoria School District 150 board approved spending $3,900 on a personal injury lawsuit against the district and a teacher.

The parent of a Roosevelt Magnet School student alleges that a teacher physically injured her child. Court documents say the teacher grabbed the student by the arm and dug her nails into the student’s arm.

Court documents say the incident occurred in March 2014.

The lawsuit filed in Peoria County Circuit Court says the plaintiff incurred $1,940.78 in medical bills.

Cass Herrington / Peoria Public Radio

Peoria School District 150 board members could begin interviewing candidates for a superintendent as soon as February. 

A consultant from the Illinois Association of School Boards presented initial survey findings during Monday night’s board meeting.  

IASB’s Thomas Leahy says 990 people in the district responded to an online survey outlining qualities they’d like to see in the superintendent selection.

Cass Herrington / Peoria Public Radio

The Peoria Public School district is developing a plan to reconfigure district boundaries and restructure grade levels at schools. 

The District 150 board began talks Monday night on possible ways to shift student populations. Under the proposed plans, the District says 321 students would be shifted to other schools. This would create a need for new bus routes, Director of Transportation Josh Collins said. 

Cass Herrington / Peoria Public Radio

Leaders from Peoria School District 150, Illinois Central College, the City and business groups gathered at City Hall Thursday to extend an agreement that connects students to careers.

The collaborative effort, Peoria Pathways to Prosperity, aims to give students who aren’t interested in college a chance to garner career training and exploration.

Interim Superintendent Sharon Kherat says the renewed agreement will further expand options for students:

District 150 looks to parents for leadership, feedback

Nov 30, 2015
Cass Herrington / Peoria Public Radio

Peoria Public School officials are hoping to strengthen ties with parents, as the district works toward finalizing a long-term strategic plan. 

District 150 board members  meet with the Parent-Teacher Organization at Glen Oak Community Learning Center at 5:30pm tonight. 

illinoisreportcard.com

Peoria's School District 150 is increasingly diverse. It also faces challenges when it comes to college and career readiness.

That's the picture painted by the latest Report Card data from the Illinois State Board of Education.

The analysis shows District 150 is the most racially and ethnically diverse school district in Peoria County.

In 2015, black students make up more than half of the district’s population. Nearly ten percent identify as Hispanic. 

Cass Herrington / Peoria Public Radio

Property owners living within the Peoria School District 150 will see a higher 2015 property tax bill.

The School board approved a $71 million tax levy request during its meeting Monday night. It’s about three percent more than last year’s request of $69 million.

The move comes in anticipation of Senate Bill 318 that would freeze property taxes. Interim Financial Officer Erik Bush says the levy hinges on projections that property values will rise about 2 percent.

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