Archive for the ‘Pritzker’s Rules of Order’ Category

“The next regularly scheduled Board meeting is Tuesday, Dec. 1 at 7:30 PM. Due to new restrictions that limit gatherings to 10 people, the meeting will be held virtually. School Board members and district leaders will be discussing how to proceed with the 20-21 school year beyond winter break, however there will be no formal vote taken at this meeting. 

The meeting will be live streamed on the Board’s YouTube channel. If you wish to make public comment it can be made in one of two ways:

  • Submit your comments via email by sending them to Recording Secretary Jeanine Stark at jstark@barrington220.org. Please use the subject line “Public Comment.”
  • Between now and 4:00 PM on Tuesday, Dec. 1 you can leave a voicemail at 847-842-3576. This will be played during the public comment portion of the Dec. 1 Board meeting.”

A copy of the agenda can be viewed here. The Board’s web page can be found here.

Please note District 220 is proposing a 4.4% increase to its property tax levy for 2020 (SeeDistrict 220 expects (4.4%) hike in property tax levy), and we strongly encourage taxpayers to voice their opinions.

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Gov. J.B. Pritzker addresses the proletariat during a video news conference from his well stocked bunker in Chicago

Gov. J.B. Pritzker is responding to a report that another Illinois county will not enforce the latest COVID-19 restrictions.

The McHenry County State’s Attorney’s Office says that it will not enforce an executive order by Pritzker shutting down indoor dining amid rising coronavirus numbers, citing questions about the legitimacy of the governor’s actions.

In a news release, the office said it “cannot in good conscience” enforce the rules on indoor dining, which Pritzker implemented as part of a statewide set of mitigations he said is aimed at curbing the rising numbers of coronavirus infections.

“Surprising that a state’s attorney doesn’t want to follow the law,” Pritzker said. “These are the laws of the state of Illinois and other jurisdictions are following the law and prosecuting.”

Illinois courts have largely sided with the governor in lawsuits filed over various restrictions, with courts in McHenry, Cook and DuPage counties denying requests for temporary restraining orders when establishments files suit over the governor’s plan to prohibit indoor dining in October.

Pritzker has warned of the potential consequences for businesses that choose to stay open in defiance of state mandates, saying that licenses could be pulled in those cases.

Read more here.

Related:McHenry County state’s attorney’s office won’t enforce governor’s indoor dining ban

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The McHenry County state’s attorney’s office will not enforce the governor’s ban on indoor dining, State’s Attorney Patrick Kenneally announced Wednesday.

The office will, however, enforce related orders requiring employees and customers to wear masks, maintain social distancing and adhere to capacity limitations.

Kenneally’s decision not to enforce the indoor dining ban rested on two main considerations.

First, no provision in the executive orders or the Illinois Emergency Management Act requires or authorizes the state’s attorney’s office to enforce Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s executive orders, Kenneally said.

“Second, there is the legitimate question, currently being litigated, as to whether the executive orders, which require the Governor to exercise ’emergency powers,’ are authorized under Illinois law or otherwise constitutional,” Kenneally said in the release.

As restaurants throughout the county continue to defy the governor’s indoor dining ban in an effort to stay afloat, enforcement of masks and social distancing remains paramount, McHenry County Board Chairman Jack Franks said.

“We have to deal in the real world and be practical,” Franks said in an interview Tuesday, ahead of Kenneally’s announcement. “So we understand that there’s not going to be enforcement of the indoor dining, OK … but knowing that, we need to try to reduce the harm and how do you do that? By enforcing the other things — the social distancing and the masking. That’s how you handle this.”

Read more here.

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Barrington School District 220 Superintendent Brian Harris told school board members Tuesday that with continuing increases in positive COVID-19 cases, the district will continue with most students in remote learning mode.

“We will continue to follow our five metrics,” Harris said, “which means most students will continue to learn at home. I recommend we continue to follow our distance learning mode.”

Board Secretary Angela Wilcox said she understood parents who are upset that their children aren’t in school. According to Wilcox, data shows that schools and elementary school children are not major sources of virus spread. She said she would continue to push for a return to in-person learning.

Board member Barry Altshuler also acknowledged the concerns of parents.

“Our community is split,” he said, but insisted, “our decisions are not financial, not political, not union-based.”

Wilcox concluded the discussion by urging all in the district to focus on making distance learning the best possible and continue to focus on the social emotional learning of students.

Read the Barrington Courier-Review side of Tuesday’s Board of Education meeting here.

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People who gave input in the search for a new Barrington Area Unit District 220 superintendent want someone who can tackle the aftermath of COVID-19 as well as equity, diversity and inclusion.

Those were major themes from 14 focus groups attended by 89 stakeholders — school board members, staff members, students, parents, and community and business leaders — and an online questionnaire answered by 838 people, consultants from School Exec Connect told the school board Tuesday night.

School Exec Connect was hired to search for a replacement for Superintendent Brian Harris, who’s “retiring” June 30. The board will have a first round of interviews with candidates in closed session Dec. 1, followed by second-round interviews later in December.

The next superintendent will have to deal with how to move forward from COVID-19, Shimp said. “Every focus group talked about it. What does post-COVID look like in Barrington? What is the learning loss? What’s the morale? What’s the climate?”

The district this year hired Nate Rouse as its first director of equity, race and cultural diversity initiatives. The school board on Tuesday approved an equity statement that will support its plans to create a more equitable and inclusive school system.

According to the feedback, the district’s top educational challenge is understanding and support of diversity, followed by having instructional methods that engage all students and closing the achievement gap among subgroups of students.

Read more here.

Editorial note: We’d have thought “the district’s top educational challenge” would be getting all 220 students back to the educational levels they would have been at were it not for current circumstances, but that’s just us.

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The following was issued by District 220 this afternoon:

“November 18, 2020

In his superintendent report at the Nov. 17 Board meeting, Dr. Harris and district leaders shared several updates regarding the 2020-21 school year. First, Dr. Harris reiterated that the district will continue following its established metrics. This means the district will remain in Distance Learning (Step 2) until the data shows it is safe to return to the Hybrid mode. Barrington 220 will continue sending out weekly updates on Monday afternoons to indicate when a return to Hybrid will be possible.  

Dr. Harris also shared that on Friday, November 20 Illinois will enter Tier 3 COVID-19 Resurgence MitigationsDue to new restrictions that limit gatherings to 10 people, the next regularly scheduled Board meeting on Tuesday, Dec. 1 will be held virtually. It will be live streamed on the Board’s YouTube channel. If you wish to make public comment it can be made in one of two ways:

  • Submit your comments via email by sending them to Recording Secretary Jeanine Stark at jstark@barrington220.org. Please use the subject line “Public Comment.” 
  • Between now and 4:00pm on Tuesday, Dec. 1 you can leave a voicemail at 847-842-3576. This will be played during the public comment portion of the Dec. 1 Board meeting.  

Tier 3 mitigation efforts also place additional restrictions on recreational activity. Upon receiving guidance from Governor Pritzker, the Illinois High School Association, and Illinois State Board of Education, Barrington High School will be pausing all winter sports practices starting on Friday, November 20. Scheduled practices for Wednesday, November 18 and Thursday, November 19 will take place as scheduled.”

Editorial note: After receiving criticism during public comment in their November 4th meeting (seeDistrict 220 board, superintendent certainly got an earful last night), it seams the 220 Board of Educations response last night was to turn off the public comment microphone. Click here to see how the speaker’s comments can barely be heard (if at all from our perspective).

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The 220 Board of Education meets tomorrow evening at 7:00 PM at the BMS-Station Campus. A copy of their agenda can be viewed here.

220 issued the following release late this afternoon in advance of the meeting:

“Due to the most recent public health guidelines, capacity will be limited to 25 people in the room, however anyone who wishes to sign up for public comment may do so. If capacity is reached, you will be asked to wait in an overflow room and then be called in for public comment. Following district protocol, all visitors must wear masks and will be required to complete an on site COVID-19 symptom screening prior to entering the building.

As a reminder, you can view the live stream of all Board of Education meetings by visiting the Board’s YouTube channel.”

With the number of staff Dr. Brain Harris brings in tow with him to these meetings, chances are there will be seating for ten or less people people for public comment at any given time, so you’re advised to arrive early if you wish to speak.

The District’s YouTube channel can be found here.

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That brought the total cost to build and run the short-lived facility to about $81.1 million, including construction costs. The emergency facility will not reopen, state officials say.

Mayor Lori Lightfoot (from left), Gov. J.B. Pritzker and U.S. Sen. Tammy Duckworth, D-Illinois, touring the $65.9 million emergency coronavirus hospital at McCormick Place on April 17 — the day Pritzker announced the first five patients had been transferred there. Only 33 more would follow, as a feared COVID-19 crush at hospitals eased.
(Tyler LaRiviere / Sun-Times)

As the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers raced to build a $66 million emergency COVID-19 field hospital inside McCormick Place last spring, state and city officials scrambled to find the staff, equipment and supplies to run it.

The tab for all of that was another $20.3 million, records obtained by the Chicago Sun-Times show, though state officials say two vendors returned a total of $5.2 million of “unspent funds.”

That brought the total cost of building and staffing the short-lived, makeshift coronavirus hospital to about $81.1 million.

State and city officials say they expect most of the costs for the McCormick Place hospital to be covered by the federal government.

The Illinois Emergency Management Agency spent $19 million to staff and operate the hospital. City Hall put in another $1.3 million for materials and supplies.

The McCormick Place field hospital, built by Walsh Construction, one of Chicago’s most politically well-connected contractors, opened in mid-April. It was shut down only weeks later, on May 8, as the demand for hospital beds for coronavirus patients eased, and it was deemed by state and city officials to no longer be needed.

Read more of the Sun*Times Watchdog report here.

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Barrington Area Unit District 220 said Thursday it will continue to follow its five-metric plan for reopening schools during COVID-19, a move endorsed by its teacher union. That means the district will not return to hybrid learning next week, as some parents and school board members hoped.

Barrington Area Unit District 220 will not modify its reopening plan but instead continue will all-virtual learning for the foreseeable future, a move endorsed by its teachers union despite a push to reopen from some parents and some school board members.

Three school board members said last week they wanted to move away from the metrics and reopen schools as soon as possible. The topic was discussed at a meeting Monday that included school administrators, two school board members, the Barrington Education Association, which represents teachers, and the Barrington School District Employee Organization, which represents educational support professionals.

The school board met in closed session Wednesday evening to discuss the topic. School Board President Penny Kazmier didn’t respond to a request for comment Thursday.

Melissa Atteberry, president of the Barrington Education Association teachers union, said the vast majority of its 715 or so members don’t want to eliminate any of the five reopening metrics, particularly given the current surge of COVID-19 cases across the region.

“We understand this is difficult for parents and for students. It’s difficult for staff and the whole community,” Atteberry said earlier this week.

Charles Parkinson, president of the Barrington School District Employee Organization, declined to comment.

Read (little) more here, but expect no comments.

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District 220 issued the following release this morning:

“November 12, 2020

Dear Barrington 220 Community: 

In our COVID-19 update earlier this week, we shared that we would provide further communication today about the Hybrid status moving forward. 

We wanted to inform you that Barrington 220 will continue to follow our established five metrics. This means the district will remain in the adaptive pause until the data shows it is safe to return to the Hybrid mode.

Please understand that while we had hoped to return to Hybrid on Monday, Nov. 16, the safety of our students and staff must remain our top priority as the virus continues to spread within our community and surrounding communities.

In order to keep everyone informed, we will continue sending out weekly COVID-19 updates on Monday afternoons.”

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