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District 215 new teachers recognized at Board meeting

Teachers new to District 215 honored with a reception and ceremony

BY QUINTON R. ARTHUR

LANSING, Ill. (October 3, 2022) — Before the District 215 Board’s monthly meeting, a ceremony was held to recognize new teachers on Tuesday, September 27.

New teacher recognition

New teachers, mentor teachers, participants in the Future Teachers program, and their families were invited to the reception and ceremony. The purpose was to celebrate teachers new to District 215 and encourage future teachers to consider the district in their professional endeavors.

Each teacher was introduced by their respective school’s principal. They received a welcome letter, certificate, and Thornton Fractional District 215 pin.

Student Equity and Leadership Club

During the Board meeting, in the TF South building report, there was mention of six students who will be representing District 215 at the 2022 National Council for Teachers of English Conference in Anaheim, California upon board approval.

The students are part of the Student Equity and Leadership Club, also known as SEL. The club has hosted advocacy-based activities, such as a seminar encouraging a change in school curriculum to represent the diverse population and addressing the over-policing of minority students and its connection to the school-to-prison pipeline.

The students who will present at the conference are Isis Barrett-Rogers, Dulce Gonzalez, Aayla Holiday, Kyndall Jackson, Breanna Lopez, and Makalah Simpson.

“Together for the past three years, we have worked together to instill a message of equity and inclusion within our school,” said Simpson.

New rules for football games

Later in the agenda, there was a discussion regarding some new rules for football games. The new rules are a result of a threat of violence that took place at the TF South vs. TF North game in September. That game was postponed at halftime and the stadium was evacuated.

Board member Richard Dust expressed concern about two of the rules. One rule requires students to have a 2.0 GPA to attend the games. As expressed in the discussion, the rule is to encourage students to get higher grades, but the public perception is that students with lower grades have higher potential to cause trouble.

“I don’t think a 2.0 average to go to a football game is very equitable,” said Dust.

The other rule presented in the discussion was around not bringing in book bags to games, a rule that was recommended by local police departments. Rita Oberman, Board President, agreed with Dust on both issues.

“I don’t want kids to feel like they are not wanted at the games. I know the meaning behind it, but that’s not how the kids are going to take it,” said Oberman.

Two possible solutions were suggested for both rules. For the 2.0 GPA rule, it was suggested students with higher GPAs could get into the games for free. For the book bag rule, an idea to incorporate a bag check system for students in a separate location, such as the gymnasium, was presented.

No final decision has been made on the rules.

The District 215 Board meets on the fourth Tuesday of each month.

Quinton R. Arthur
Quinton R. Arthur
Quinton received his Bachelor of Arts in English from Northern Illinois University and his Master of Science in Journalism from Roosevelt University. In addition to reporting for The Lansing Journal and the Homewood-Flossmoor Chronicle, he volunteers with 100 Black Men of Chicago, Metropolitan Board of the Chicago Urban League, Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, Burst Into Books, and various other organizations. A south suburban resident since 2004, Quinton is passionate about telling the unsung stories of the community.