If District 97's April 5 referendum fails, officials say drastic cuts will have to be made to reverse its budget deficit. Wednesday Journal has been looking at some of the programs on the reductions list leading up to the vote. In this issue, after-school sports and activities.
Brooks Middle School was the winner in the 6th Annual Vex Robotics competition between Oak Park's two middle schools. The event is sponsored each year by the Oak Park Education Foundation. This year's competition took place at Julian Middle School, 416 S. Ridgeland.
For some River Forest elementary school kids, building a snow man just doesn't cut it. Building a snow fort is way better. In the eight years since Principal Pam Hyde has been at Lincoln Elementary School, 511 Park St. in River Forest, it's been a popular activity for students during the winter.
Will closing the campus at Oak Park and River Forest High School stop students from using drugs? Likely not, says the school's principal. But the school does want to hear from the community about various ways to curtail drug use on campus among some students — including drug testing kids or using drug-detection canines — at a public forum at the school on Feb. 15.
If a parent of a Julian Middle School sixth-grader should get wind of the fact that one of their child's teachers sometimes stands on a desk during class, don't fret. That would be Jen Galant, conducting one of her lively classroom lessons. Galant, in her fifth year at Julian, 416 S. Ridgeland where she teaches social sciences, language arts and reading, likes to keep her students engaged.
On Wednesday evening, as buckets of snow fell upon the Chicago area—18-inches in Oak Park—Michele Zurakowski and her staff dined on the Italian dish. It was brought in that evening by their co-worker at the Oak Park River Forest Food Pantry—a well-deserved meal for a smaller-than-usual staff who chose to work Wednesday during one of the worst blizzards of record in the city.
Anxious parents waited outside Fernando Carrillo's classroom after one recent school day — the sound of harp strings being plucked filling the hall. The Brooks Middle School students inside were getting some last minute instruction from Marguerite Lynn Williams, a professional harpist who's been working with the kids this month.
Although the percentage of black students suspended in the two middle schools in Oak Park Elementary School District 97 has dropped by nearly 10 percent in the last year, that particular student population still overwhelming leads all other kids in compiling infractions and receiving consequences.