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The State of Illinois is one of many across the country who are moving towards new curriculum in English, Language Arts, Math, and soon Science based upon the expectations contained within the Common Core Standards.  Here is some information from the Illinois State Board of Education that provides a nice overview to get you started in your learning.

The Common Core State Standards establish clear expectations for what students should be learning in English language arts and mathematics at every grade level from pre-kindergarten through 12th grade. Spearheaded by governors and state education leaders from a consortium of more than 40 states, the Common Core represents a collaborative effort to raise expectations and improve instruction for all students regardless of where they live and to provide students with an equal opportunity to succeed academically. The Common Core sets high, clear and uniform standards to prepare students for college and the work force.

 

The Common Core standards differ from previous learning standards because of their emphasis on critical thinking and concept mastery. In English language arts, the Common Core underlines the importance of reading nonfiction, using evidence to back claims and expanding academic vocabulary. In mathematics, the standards call for greater focus on fewer topics so that students gain a more comprehensive understanding of key topics. They also emphasize the application of math towards solving real-world problems. The Common Core’s changes will ensure that students not only gain skills and knowledge, but can also apply their knowledge to succeed after high school graduation.

 

Although created by a national consortium of states, the Common Core standards are independent of the federal government. Implementation decisions will remain local and teachers and school administrators will continue to write local curricula and lesson plans for their classrooms. The Common Core standards establish the benchmarks for what students need to learn, but districts still determine the best strategies and content for instruction and curriculum. Teachers will continue to make daily instructional decisions to reach individual students.

 

Illinois adopted the Common Core standards in 2010 after recognizing that it needed to update its existing learning standards. The creators of the Common Core consulted with parents, teachers and school administrators through two public comment periods held in September 2009 and March 2010. After considering public feedback, staff members from the Illinois State Board of Education then submitted their own suggestions to the consortium developing the Common Core standards. Educators across the state have already begun to incorporate elements of the Common Core into their curricula and all schools are expected to fully implement curricula that meet the new standards during the 2013-2014 school year.

 

Illinois is currently in the process of updating its science standards as well. It was one of 26 lead states that collaborated on the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS), which will provide a new way of teaching science and engineering to students in kindergarten through the 12th grade. As a lead state, Illinois helped to write the standards and provided guidance on their eventual implementation. The final draft of NGSS was released in April 2013 and the State Board will review the new science standards for potential adoption later this year. NGSS is similar to the Common Core in that it is rigorous, internationally benchmarked and intended to better prepare students for college and career.

 

Students will ultimately benefit from the Common Core’s consistency and higher standards. Since the majority of states have adopted the Common Core, students who move from one state to another will face the same expectations. The standards ensure that an education in Illinois is on par with an education in other states. The Common Core aligns with international standards as well so that students will be well-equipped to compete in today’s global economy. Because it encourages students to apply and demonstrate their knowledge in real-world settings, Illinois’ students will be better prepared for life after high school graduation.

 

Resources

 

Illinois State Board of Education:

http://www.isbe.net/common_core/default.htm

 

Common Core IL, a project of the Core Coalition:

http://commoncoreil.org/real-learning/

 

Common Core State Standards Initiative:

http://www.corestandards.org/

It looks like this week of school: August 26-August 30th, will be hot with some higher heat indexes than we’ve seen in a few weeks.  I wanted to remind everyone, and particularly new parents, that all of our schools are climate controlled.  Teachers and administrators will also be mindful of the heat as it relates to outside recess and will be sure that children have access to water during the day.

Our coaches are also cognizant of the warm weather and will make appropriate accommodations for the heat.  Hopefully we can get through the first few days and we’ll find some relief a bit later in the week.  If you have concerns for your child, please contact your building principal, but we wanted to remind you that we do have air conditioning and water available in all of our schools!

Recently, there have been several questions by parents and prospective parents about whether or not they are able to register their students in District 228.  In some cases, the students had attended our schools, but the family has moved.  In other cases, the children attended another district but the family is “hopeful” they will be moving into the District sometime soon.

Board Policy 7:60 defines and describes procedures for residency.  Resident students may attend the District tuition-free.

Here are some excerpts from the Policy:

” Only students who are residents of the District may attend a District school without a tuition charge, except as otherwise provided below or in State law. A student’s residence is the same as the person who has legal custody of the student. ”

If the District is unsure of residency, or feels that the evidence presented does not confirm residency, the following section of Policy 7:60 comes into action:

“If the Superintendent or designee determines that a student attending school on a tuition-free basis is a non-resident of the District for whom tuition is required to be charged, he or she on behalf of the School Board shall notify the person who enrolled the student of the tuition amount that is due. The notice shall be given by certified mail, return receipt requested. The person who enrolled the student may challenge this determination and request a hearing as provided by The School Code, 105 ILCS 5/10-20.12b.”

Please feel free to contact the District Office should you have questions about residency or registration!

Enjoy an ice cream social on a beautiful summer evening, serenaded by the Middle School Jazz Band with some cool jazz selections.  What  better way to prepare for the 4th of July Holiday!Summer Jazz  Ice Cream Social on July 2nd at 6 pm, concert follows at 7.  Come out to the City Park and support the Middle School musicians!  Both the Middle School Summer Band and the Middle School Jazz Band will be performing.

WVIK, Augustana Public Radio, will broadcast the 2013 Illinois Music Educators Association Honors concert featuring area high school students in band, orchestra and choir on June 23 and June 30.

Geneseo students involved are:

Shaina Lohman, Chelsea Schwarzkopf, Taylor Hager, Corbyn Beck, Lily Kluge, Courtney LaBrie, Kim Moore, Michael Daniels, Gabby Cooney, Chas Young, Allison Yerkey, Luke Larson, Megan Roome, Heather Robinson, Jessica Schaumburg, Taylor Heppner, Naomi Terpening, Clare Possin, Morgan Bowton, Daniel Sears, Hannah Johnson, Ryan Zummallen, Karl Flynn, Hunter Kuffel, Dugan Kuffel, Kamron Wilson

WVIK to broadcast 2013 IMEA Honors concerts

Rock Island, Ill. – WVIK, Augustana Public Radio, will broadcast the 2013 Illinois Music Educators Association Honors concert featuring area high school students in band, orchestra and choir.

The first broadcast, at 7 p.m. on Sunday, June 23, will feature the band and chorus. The second, at 7 p.m. on Sunday, June 30, will feature the chorus and orchestra, ending with America the Beautiful, featuring the band, chorus and orchestra.

Recorded the week of January 23, 2013, at the Peoria Civic Center, the concerts showcase 600 accomplished high school musicians. Students came from nine evenly divided State Districts and had to win three auditions to make it into these top ensembles.

Students from the Quad-Cities area came from Rock Island High School, Geneseo High School, Moline High School, Rockridge High School, Galesburg High School, Quincy Notre Dame High School and Quincy Senior High School. (A list of students is included with the email.)

Performances include works by Tchaikovsky, Mozart, Bach and Sousa.

From Geneseo, the sponsors for the concerts are Ford And Sons Inc., Hanford Insurance Agency, Becker & Becker Plumbing, Heating & Cooling, Puentes Construction, Maple Leaf Medical Services and Community School District 228.

For more information, please contact Colleen Sibthorp, WVIK’s business manager, at (309) 794-7741 or colleensibthorp@wvik.org.

 

About WVIK: WVIK, broadcasting at 90.3 FM in the Quad Cities and 95.9 in Dubuque, Iowa, is the source for public radio for the Quad Cities and surrounding 75-mile radius in Eastern Iowa and Western Illinois. WVIK’s 30,000 weekly listeners trust the station’s award-winning journalism, thoughtful array of music and insightful commentary. WVIK consistently is ranked as the number one “most listened to” public radio station in the Quad Cities.

The Daily Beast and Newsweek have published their list of the best 2,000 high schools in the nation recently.  Geneseo HS makes the grade this year!  Previously we posted that we were part of the US News and World Report’s top ranking in both Illinois and nation-wide, but mysteriously the data changed and we were unranked.  Hopefully that doesn’t happen here!

From their site, this is a quick summary of the methodology: “This year our ranking highlights the best 2,000 public high schools in the nation—those that have proven to be the most effective in turning out college-ready grads. The list is based on six components: graduation rate (25 percent), college acceptance rate (25 percent), AP/IB/AICE tests taken per student (25 percent), average SAT/ACT scores (10 percent), average AP/IB/AICE scores (10 percent), and percent of students enrolled in at least one AP/IB/AICE course (5 percent).”

 

Congratulations to Geneseo High School!

There will be no school for students on Monday, April 29th. Teachers will be engaged in work to review, revise and input written curriculum for all courses taught within the District, PK-12 so that eventually all parents, students, staff, and those all around the world– will be able to view all units of instruction through a digital platform. The district has partnered with Rubicon Atlas to bring this forward and we expect that at the start of next school year you will be able to view curriculum from the District Website in a clear and easy to use format.