D202 school board meeting brings up topics of inclusivity, academic performance

Ella Bowker, Staff Writer

On November 14th, District 202 held a board meeting to discuss data from their year in review. 

The meeting opened with the recognition of National Merit Scholarship semifinalists and then moved on to discuss the opening of the school year report, showing charts that displayed a slightly lower enrollment than in previous years. 

Later charts captured ETHS’ year in review: a collection of results from SEL (Social Emotional Learning) surveys that students had previously taken. The main reports from this review were that 56 percent of students feel that they belong quite a bit in the school, 25 percent feel quite/extremely connected to ETHS adults, 40 percent feel teachers are interested in them and a majority of students feel safe and respected with teachers. 

Focusing more on attendance and academics, there was an average daily attendance rate of 92.8% and the mean GPA was 3.25. 

“Coming out of the pandemic there were certainly things that we needed to revisit regarding instruction, and really examine our beliefs around instructional practice. I think this is an opportunity to really engage our stakeholders for a vision around teaching and learning that’s consistent with the goals that we currently have for the district,” said superintendent Dr. Marcus Campbell.

To combat shifts in student engagement since the pandemic started, Campbell and Assistant Superintendent of Curriculum and Instruction Dr. Pete Bavis wrote a challenge to the Instruction and Assessment Vision Casting Committee. They recognize that racism is the harshest factor that influences student achievement, and ETHS strives to eliminate this.  

“We’re going to propose recommendations to Dr. Campbell and the board pertaining to the classroom environment, instruction, student learning experience, and assessment and accountability policies. That committee will also support the implementation and evaluation of those recommendations as they move forward,” said Bavis.

Looking at the Illinois report card, ETHS meets commendable standards, meaning there are no underperforming subgroups of students. However, the data demonstrate declining scores in English and math over the last five years.

Other topics included the district’s goals, how they would receive student feedback to improve those goals, discussing Dr. Campbell’s community TalkBacks and consulting with the finance committee.