District 70 trustees tackle long-term goals in Morton Grove
Updated: October 1, 2012 6:17AM
MORTON GROVE — Morton Grove School District 70 officials outlined three aspects of a six-part strategic plan for the 2012-15 school years that aims to reassess technology use, update district curricula and review special-education programs, during this month’s Board of Education meeting.
Only half of the six goals included in the strategic plan were discussed at the meeting, and the other three — “Assessment for Learning, Student Connection and Partnership in Action” — will be highlighted at next month’s board meeting, District 70 superintendent Phil Collins said.
District officials said their first goal is to develop a comprehensive plan to review and update district curricula based on curriculum benchmarks set for the township as a whole.
That plan is expected to be implemented by spring of next year, said Sue Wings, principal of Park View School.
“One aspect we’re going to focus on is professional development and preparing our students not just for high school, but their future,” Wings said.
Differentiation, the second goal discussed, is an analysis of the current special-education delivery model and the academic progress of its students.
After the study is completed by spring, school administrators will recommend to trustees possible changes to the special-education-delivery model.
“We’ll start by getting a committee in place that will identify student trends and determine what’s working and what’s not,” Wings said. “That committee will recommend the changes, if any, that need to be made.”
The third goal outlined at the Aug. 20 meeting, “Investment for the Future,” centered on long-term technology goals and an initiative to carefully manage district resources to maintain a balanced budget.
Brian Galuski, director of technology for District 70, said the district would focus on shifting the use of technology to make it more individual-focused.
“One thing we’re looking at is having our students go one-on-one with technology resources by giving them the opportunity to take home the devices used in class,” Galuski said.
As far as being in line technology-wise with Niles North and West high schools, Galuski said, District 70 keeps ongoing technology trends at the high schools in mind when revising its plans and policies.
“We want to stay in line with the high schools and keep on track, but we don’t want to mimic everything they do,” Metz said. “We’re still in the development phase of getting what they have.”
A revised “acceptable use policy” for staff that takes into account new uses and trends in social media is also expected to be included in the final report, which is set to be recommended to trustees in winter 2012.
In anticipation of the costs associated with technology upgrades, the second part of that goal calls for the careful management of district resources and the exploration of opportunities to reduce other costs around the school.
For example, if the district can find ways to save on energy costs, that money could be shifted to cover technology purchases, Collins said.
“The plan is about taking a fresh look of where we’re at as a district and continuing to maintain healthy finances,” Collins said.