D181 Talks on Advanced Learning Set to Continue

Superintendent Renée Schuster encouraged the community to review questions and answers about the administration's proposed plan on the District 181 website.

Editor's note: The following is a letter that was sent from District 181 Superintendent Renée Schuster to district families Thursday concerning the ongoing discussion of the recommendations by the district's advanced learning task force, which will continue Monday night at Elm School. Board members spent over three hours discussing the proposal at their Feb. 11 meeting. You can listen to that discussion via the District 181 podcast, which can be found here.

We are committed to keeping you informed about the work we do each day to continually improve the educational experiences of students in District 181. This school year, you have had the opportunity to hear from our advanced learning task force.

In the fall of 2011, the board of education held renewed discussion regarding concerns related to meeting the needs of the District’s gifted education students and the services those students were receiving. To effectively review and address those concerns, the district contracted with the University of Virginia to conduct a program review. Following the university’s report, the district developed a philosophy of teaching and learning and a definition of gifted students. Additionally, the board of education called for a task force to be established for the purpose of developing an inclusive implementation plan incorporating the university’s findings.

During the Feb. 11 board of education meeting, the advanced learning task force engaged in a dialogue with our board members about proposed long-term plans. To help further clarify that information, the task force has developed a question-and-answer document. I encourage you to review this Q&A and its related attachments.

Click here to access the Q&A and related attachments.

The green highlighting on the Q&A indicates areas that were not discussed in detail during the Feb. 11 meeting. Answers that refer to an attachment are highlighted in pink. 

The board of education will next discuss the multi-year advanced learning task force recommended plan during their meeting at Elm School on Feb. 25, 2013 (7 p.m.). For those who cannot attend, you can access the live podcast link here.

Thank you for your attention and for your partnership in helping all District 181 students learn and grow.


Dr. Renée Schuster


martinez February 23, 2013 at 04:50 PM
D181 Parents Wake up! Behind Schuster's grin lies a trained speech therapist who is asking our teachers to perform the impossible in classrooms across the district. The Advanced Learning Plan is a sham and it should be called what it truly is: The New District 181 Utopian Learning Plan for All; its purpose will negatively impact every student in every grade level. Example: all students will be expected to be potentially twice accelerated in math, no ability grouping in language arts, 8 late start days (10am on Wednesdays) throughout the year to align with District 86 with no make up of instructional hours, lots of tax dollars focused on teacher training, substitute teachers and costly materials. Read it for yourselves on the D181 Website Boardocs dated 2/11 and 2/25 and email or speak to the gang of five BOE members (Nelson, Yaeger, Rhoads, Turek, Lewensohn) and ask them to put down their rubber stamps until this plan is vetted and exposed. Fact: we have highly paid administrators taking us down the path of destruction who lack the credentials to be proposing a plan of this magnitude. By the way, what has happened to Janet Stutz, the newly crowned Superintendent of Orland Park effective July 1, who continues to be paid by 181 taxpayers and has little involvement with this ridiculous plan even though she oversees curriculum? Let's open our eyes and hold the BOE and the administration accountable; our children should not be used in an experiment that is doomed to fail.


More »
Got a question? Something on your mind? Talk to your community, directly.
Note Article
Just a short thought to get the word out quickly about anything in your neighborhood.
Share something with your neighbors.What's on your mind?What's on your mind?Make an announcement, speak your mind, or sell somethingPost something
See more »