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Archive for the ‘District 220 referendum’ Category

“Dear Barrington 220 Community,

First and foremost, I want to say thank you. On Tuesday, March 17 registered voters in the Barrington 220 community overwhelmingly passed a $147 million bond referendum, which will greatly impact the future of our schools.

According to preliminary results, the question was approved by voters with 63% yes votes and 37% no votes.

Especially at a time like this, when our nation and our community are facing unprecedented challenges, it is amazing to see the Barrington area stand behind our schools. Together we will get through this pandemic challenge and our community will be stronger than ever before.

This vote is the culmination of a three year community engagement process, which involved collaboration and feedback from parents, students, teachers, administrators, Board of Education members, community members, and architects, about the future of our schools. Thanks to their hard work and dedication, along with your community support at the polls, Barrington 220 will be able to:

  • Significantly enhance safety and security at every school
  • Better prepare our students for a successful future
  • Protect the community’s investment in our school buildings by repairing things like roofs, windows, electrical systems, plumbing systems, heating and air conditioning

We will soon begin working with our architects and engineers to develop detailed project plans and drawings. Construction will likely begin in Spring 2021 and will happen in phases over several years.

Thank you again for your support in making sure Barrington 220 remains a destination school district in the years to come.”

The 220 email can be viewed here.

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Barrington Area Unit District 220 received approval for its request to borrow $147 million for building projects, including safety and security upgrades at all its schools.

Unofficial results with nearly all votes counted from Tuesday’s election show 6,045 were in favor and 3,781 were opposed in Cook, Lake, Kane and McHenry counties.

Officials said the $147 million will pay for basic projects, including upgrades to school safety and security, plumbing, electrical, roofing and heating, ventilation and air conditioning.

District 220 Superintendent Brian Harris said the next move will be to hire a construction manager, architect and bond counsel to assisting in financing the work.

Read more here.

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We have several concerns with the referendum that the Barrington School Board chose to place on the March 17 ballot, but for the sake of time, we’ll forego listing them all and get down to our primary objection, which happens to be our most timely one.

A few short months ago, District 220 issued the following press release:

“Barrington 220 is proud to announce it has been named one of the 2019 Top Workplaces in the Chicago area by the Chicago Tribune. The list is based solely on employee feedback gathered through a third-party survey administered by research partner, Energage, LLC. The anonymous survey measures several aspects of workplace culture, including alignment, execution, and connection. Click here to see the full list.”

Dr. Brian Harris, Superintendent of Schools, wrote the following of 220’s top workplace distinction:

“I am very proud of our staff for making Barrington 220 a great place to work. Their dedication and passion are reflected each day in the outstanding education we provide to our students.”

In fact, District 220 is the only school district listed on the Chicago Tribune’s list of Top 150 Workplaces in the Chicago area. We think that’s admirable, but the reality sets in all too quickly for parents, students, teachers, staff and, above all, taxpayers when considering another list.

In the most recent ranking of best high schools in Illinois by U.S. News and World Report, Barrington High School ranked 35th.

Those high schools ahead of Barrington in the Chicago area were: Adlai E Stevenson HS (6), Libertyville HS (10), Hinsdale Central HS (12), John Hersey HS (13), Deerfield HS (14), New Trier Township HS Winnetka 15), Glenbrook North HS (16), Lincoln Park HS (17), Prospect HS (18), Neuqua Valley HS (19), Buffalo Grove HS (20), Glenbard West HS (21), William Fremd HS (22), Vernon Hills HS (23), Glenbrook South HS (24), Lake Forest HS (25), Highland Park HS (26), Evanston Township HS (27), Westinghouse HS (28), Metea Valley HS (29), York Community HS (30), Naperville Central HS (31), Naperville North HS (32) and St. Charles North HS (34).

When considering the two lists we’ve shared, we must ask why District 220’s board and, more specifically, Dr. Brian Harris, can be so pleased with Barrington’s lackluster rank among other high schools.

There was a time when New Trier and Barrington High Schools were the gold standards to be considered when families were relocating to the Chicago area. As one can see, New Trier is still well respected, and we challenge our Board of Education to commit to trying to improve the Barrington High School that we once enjoyed and was so widely envied.

Passing the proposed referendum will not accomplish this. Perhaps when the Board begins such initiatives, we’ll look forward to endorsing them.

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From District 220

“Based on the rapidly evolving situation of the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) and recommendations from public health officials to limit public gatherings, Barrington 220 is closing all school buildings to students the week of March 16. In addition, all activities and events at the buildings are canceled through spring break.

However, students will be “in school” virtually and we will implement our Distance Learning Plan (click here to see FAQs) on Monday, March 16 through Thursday, March 19. This means students will be learning from home next week and these days will not have to be made up at the end of the school year. As you are aware, Friday, March 20 was a previously scheduled day off for students.

Spring Break will run as scheduled March 20-March 29. As a precautionary measure, next week Barrington 220 will request in a separate communication that families and staff voluntarily complete an online form, if you have plans for international travel over spring break, or during the month of April. Students and staff will be asked to stay home for a period of 14 days from the time they leave an area with widespread or ongoing community spread (CDC Level 3 Travel Health Notice).

We will make sure students bring home all their devices, chargers and any materials they would need to complete assignments TODAY. All K-12 students, including kindergarten students, will use their devices for Distance Learning next week. In the event a student forgets learning materials/devices at school, please contact the school next week.

As required by Board Policy 4:180 Pandemic Preparedness, Barrington 220 has created this Pandemic Preparedness Plan. This document is subject to change, as the situation develops. In addition, I encourage you to visit our Coronavirus web page for the latest information: www.barrington220.org/coronavirus

Thank you in advance for your support as we implement what is best for our students and staff during this unprecedented time. We understand this may cause challenges for some families, however we believe this is in the best interest for our school community at this time. We will consult with our local health officials over spring break to evaluate when it is safe for our students and staff to return to our facilities. If necessary, Barrington 220 is prepared to continue the Distance Learning Plan after spring break. We will continue sending out regular updates as needed.”

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If you would like to skip the crowds and the politics on March 17, early voting starts today through March 16. To view early voting locations, times and more information for your county, click on the corresponding link: 

Please note: The Barrington Hills Observer does not support the Barrington 220 Referendum.  We’ll share our reasons for voting “No” later this week.

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Barrington Area Unit District 220 will seek voter approval next month to borrow $147 million for building projects, including safety and security upgrades at all its schools.

Regardless of the outcome of the March 17 referendum vote, district residents will see a reduction in their property tax bills. How much depends on voters.

Former school board President Brian Battle said the decision to pare the proposed borrowing by $38 million shows officials listened to voters.

Battle, now part of a residents’ group called Yes for Barrington 220’s Future, said the timing is right to support the request. That’s in part because of historically low interest rates.

However, some like Barrington resident Willard “Bill” Bishop are questioning the district’s request, saying that after extensive study, he’s concluded too little annual spending on building maintenance has led to the $147 million proposal.

Over the years, Bishop contends, the school board elected to “fully support spending on personnel in each year’s budget” while not devoting enough to facility maintenance.

Read more here.

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The Illinois State Board of Education upheld Barrington School District 220’s May 2018 decision to fire a math teacher after pornographic images were A Barrington High School teacher is now officially — and finally — fired from the district after he had been let go two years ago but unsuccessfully appealed to the state board of education to get his job back.

A Barrington High School teacher is now officially — and finally — fired from the district after he had been let go two years ago but unsuccessfully appealed to the state board of education to get his job back.

The Barrington School District 220 Board of Education voted at a recent meeting to terminate former math teacher Matthew Mizanin. He was found to have pornographic photos on his school district laptop while he was under investigation for “grossly unprofessional” classroom conduct, according to official state documents.

The official termination comes nearly two years after the SD220 board initially fired Mizanin in May 2018, based on charges that he “engaged in grossly unprofessional behavior and exercised extremely poor judgment,” according to the documents.

Being a tenured teacher, Mizanin filed an appeal of his termination with the Illinois State Board of Education.

Read the full story here.

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