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BHS Trafic

“Sounds like a nuisance.” – The Daily Herald’s description of District 220’s traffic plan. Officials are so confused they’ve misspelled traffic signs.

“As you are aware, the Lake County Department of Transportation is replacing the bridge over Flint Creek on Hart Road. The bridge replacement and road closure is scheduled through November. To help mitigate traffic impacts from the road closure, representatives and traffic engineers from the Lake County Department of Transportation, the Village of Barrington, and Barrington 220 have worked in collaboration to improve traffic flow on and around the Barrington High School Campus. Although these efforts will help alleviate congestion at arrival and dismissal time, improved traffic flow can only go so far toward mitigating congestion.

To that end, Barrington 220 and the Village of Barrington have been consulting with Barrington Transportation to help reduce congestion near BHS. We ask that all students and families consider walking, biking, or riding the bus if possible. In fact, students who consistently walk, bike, or ride the bus on and off of campus will be entered into a drawing to win BHS spirit wear, gift cards for Airpods, Apple Watches and more.

Other ways to reduce congestion could be to utilize these remote options:

1) Purchase a parking permit for one of 3 locations at a cost of $100:

  • The Barrington – 540 W Northwest HWY (125 spots available) (MAP)
  • The Barrington Metra Station – 201 South Spring Street (125 spots available) (MAP)
  • St. Matthew’s Lutheran Church – 720 Dundee Ave (100 spots available) (MAP)

2) Sign-up for dropping off students at a remote location (FREE) 

  • The Barrington – 540 W Northwest HWY
  • The Barrington Metra Station – 201 South Spring Street

Both options include a shuttle bus from the location to BHS, leaving remote locations at 8AM and a shuttle bus from BHS to the remote locations at the end of the school day, arriving at the remote locations at approximately 3:50PM. Parking permit and remote drop-off is for August 22 to November 4.

From now until 7AM on Friday, September 6, 2022 you can click here to purchase a parking permit ($100) or sign up for drop off locations.

Please note, the Barrington Police department will be patrolling the additional parking areas, and violators will be ticketed and potentially towed at the owner’s expense. In addition, please be aware that parking in the remote lots is at your own risk. In the case of vandalism or damage occurring to their vehicle, the owner of the vehicle is responsible for remediating through their personal auto insurance, or out of pocket.

Please note that during the school year the main entrance to BHS off of Main Street will only be accessible to staff, buses and Build 220 construction traffic. All students and parents must use the west parking lot (off Hart Road) to access the building. The west parking lot is reserved for senior parking only.”

Source  

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tenor

District 220: “Families are highly encouraged to have their students ride the school bus or carpool”

“As many of you are aware, Hart Road is currently closed from US Route 14 (Northwest Highway) to Main Street (Lake Cook Road) until November.

In order to ease traffic in the area and make sure students arrive safely to school this fall, the district is working with the Village of Barrington, Barrington Police Department, and Barrington Transportation Company, in order to provide the option of shuttle buses and permitted parking spots for Barrington High School students at various locations throughout the village. BHS will send out more details to families next week.”

Earlier this week, the Daily Herald published:

Gridlock alert

Barrington Hills drivers should expect delays on County Line Road between Haegers Bend Road/Elgin Road and Hart Road as crews resurface pavement and construct new sidewalk ramps. Work wraps up in early December.”

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220

Controversy continues to swirl in Barrington Community Unit District 220 over the book “Gender Queer,” as parents who object to its presence in the Barrington High School library and those who support it spoke out again Tuesday before the board of education.

Meanwhile, district officials say they are proceeding with a formal review of the memoir to determine whether it belongs on the library shelves.

Delivering an update at Tuesday’s board meeting, Superintendent Robert Hunt said the district is following its procedures for evaluating the book, which is not part of the district’s curriculum, isn’t used in any instructional material and isn’t available in middle school libraries.

Board member Katie Karam said the big issue involves a discussion on how the district curates books for school libraries and what should be considered sexually explicit material.

The meeting Tuesday was highly charged, with prolonged and often emotional public comment from those who view the book as pornographic, those advocating for the freedom to read and those who support LGBTQ+ students. Many carried signs with slogans such as “Our children need to be taught how to think not what to think.”

Jenna Shields, a parent in the district, said a petition being circulated expressing the need to “filter obscene and pornographic content across all media and resources” already has received more than 1,300 signatures.

“That content has been promoted by the teachers and is available to our students,” she said. “The idea of parents having to filter for this or routinely opt out is unacceptable. While many policies exist to address obscene or pornographic content, the school library policy still needs to be updated.”

Read more here.

Related:Petition started to ‘Filter Adult Obscene/Porn Content & SB818 Opt Out,’ in D220 Schools

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OBH Capture

Our gratitude goes to those who’ve followed our four-part journey thus far. Hopefully, it may lead you to the same conclusions we now share.

Obvious to all, there is no way that the current Board of Trustees (BOT), especially President Cecola, would ever consider seating Robin VanCastle next to them in the MacArthur Room. She has shown the unwavering honesty that causes many to avert their eyes, for fear that eye contact would reveal truths some, such as President Cecola, cannot hide.

No one will ever know if Trustee Buettner contemplated this in her discussions with Pro-Tem Konicek. The question is, do we owe her a debt of gratitude for setting the bar so high as to cause the BOT themselves to raise theirs?  Only time will tell.

As we’ve stated, our Village President nominates appointees of his (or is it his household’s) choosing.  At the very least he should have reached out to Ms. VanCastle as he did to other prospective nominees to express Trustee Buettner’s desires.  That is just common courtesy, which apparently he and most trustees have forgotten. It’s that change which can lead to moral turpitude that prompted this series.

The Observer was founded over twelve years ago, since many residents at the time recognized the ethical erosion in our Village government, not only at the Board level, but Commission levels as well. We like to think our communications had some influence in correcting that situation beginning in 2013.

Unfortunately, last year we witnessed our Village government heading in a downward path, and the speed at which it is continuing has us concerned.

Last year we elected four people to our BOT, one being an incumbent Trustee escalated to Village President.  For six years, then Trustee Brian Cecola relied almost exclusively on the guidance provided by former Village President Marty McLaughlin and Trustee Colleen Konicek Hannigan. Their education, experience and long hours studying the many issues facing our Village proved immensely beneficial to Cecola and were arguably the reason for his election to President.

Sadly, President Cecola did not retain enough of what he should have learned from his previous mentors to be effective in his new responsibilities, which has become glaringly evident to residents. And it appears that the three newer Trustees are following Cecola’s lead, but the question is, who is setting his leadership path? From our observations, not him, and in fairness, we need to explain why.

President Cecola is a hard worker when it comes to performing tasks he derives income from.  However, in his volunteer roles he seems to prefer to relegate research and decision making to others in his duties at Village Hall.

He appears to lean heavily (some say exclusively) on the former Building Permit Coordinator and the current (inexperienced) Village Administrator for guidance (and decisions).  The has led to the three new Trustees relying on often biased counsel from non-elected sources.

Examples include the former Permit Coordinator’s well documented advocating for aboveground swimming pools for a neighbor, now permitted for the first time in our Village of estate properties’ history. This in Cecola’s first month in office, dutifully approved to his wife’s delight.

There are other examples of Cecola’s self-interest voting that have occurred, not the least of which is convincing the BOT to terminate a longstanding snow plowing and salting relationship with Cuba Township in favor of awarding business to a private landscaping company he socializes with. Without providing a reason when asked, Cecola conveniently abstained on voting on that one.

Before our newer Trustees continue in this trend, governed by two non-elected people planning Cecola’s course in our Village, we implore them to pause and take stock of where they’re at now and how they’re perceived in the community.

President Cecola is no longer credible and has lost the support of many former supporters, apparently including President McLaughlin, who now can be heard opining that Cecola is not the same today as the person he and others supported and voted for last April.

If Cecola continues to be disinterested, we sincerely ask Trustees Ekstrom, Riff, Strauss and now Hills, to pay much closer attention to what is happening in our community and to the management of our Village.

Related: “Our predominantly pusillanimous Village Board (Part 1),” “Our predominantly pusillanimous Village Board (Part 2),” “Our predominantly pusillanimous Village Board (Part 3),” and “Our predominantly pusillanimous Village Board (Part 4).”

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BOT 12.14.21

Our Village Board of Trustees meets this evening at 6:30 PM.  Some of the topics on their agenda include:

  • [Vote] An Ordinance for the Levy and Assessment of Taxes for the Fiscal Year Beginning January 1, 2021 and Ending December 31, 2021 Ordinance 21 –
  • [Vote] An Ordinance Amending Driveway Permit and Design Regulations as set Forth in Title 10 of the Village’s Municipal Code Ordinance 21 –
  • [Vote] An Ordinance Amending Sections 5-2-1, 5-3-9, 5-3-13, 5-5-2 and 5-5-11 of the Village’s Zoning Regulations Ordinance 21 –
  • [Vote] An Ordinance Granting an Amendment to an Existing Special Use Permit to Allow an Addition to Countryside Elementary School, 205 W. County Line Road Ordinance 21 – (72 Hours after the ZBA approved it)
  • [Vote] An Ordinance Adding Requirements for Road Access Permits Amending Title 4, Building Regulations of the Village’s Municipal Code Ordinance 21 –
  • [Vote] An Ordinance Approving a Final Plat of Re-subdivision: Shah Consolidation: 41 & 45 Hawthorne Lane Ordinance 21- (48 Hours after the PC approved it)
  • [Vote] A Resolution Approving the Execution of an Intergovernmental Agreement (IGA) for Maintenance with Cuba Township Road District
    Resolution 21 –

It bears mentioning that two of the items the BOT may be voting on tonight were approved just this week by the Zoning Board of Appeals and the Plan Commission.  Since audio recordings and minutes are not yet available from these two meetings, the board members will not have the support of that documentation if votes occur.

The complete 179-page agenda can be viewed and downloaded here.

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Hunt Grove

Barrington 220 Superintendent Robert Hunt, his second grade daughter Emmie Hunt, 7, center, and their neighbor, Hadley Crowley, 8, put on masks as they walk to school on the first day of school at Grove Avenue Elementary School, Aug. 20, 2021, in Barrington. (Stacey Wescott / Chicago Tribune)

As Illinois schools welcome students back to fully reopened classrooms this month amid another coronavirus surge, educators face a thorny question: How do you teach students who are quarantined by COVID-19?

The dismantling of pandemic-era remote and hybrid instruction programs across the U.S. this fall arrives by state proclamation and on the urging of U.S. Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona, who earlier this summer said, “Schools have shown that they can — and should — be offering in-person learning opportunities five days a week to every student.”

Remote instruction can be offered to students while they are under quarantine, Illinois State Board of Education Superintendent Carmen Ayala said earlier this summer. But despite pleas from some parents who want a full-time e-learning option to continue, districts including Chicago Public Schools are reserving their virtual programs for students who qualify as medically fragile and have documented health conditions.

Some teachers and parents are applauding the full return to in-person learning. But the abrupt halting of remote instruction — which last year allowed in-person students who tested positive for the virus to pivot swiftly to online classes — is forcing school districts to get creative this fall when it comes to teaching kids who need to quarantine.

Students at Barrington School District 220 will have the option to participate in the district’s Test to Stay Strategy. It will rely on a slate of authorized PCR or rapid antigen screenings from the date of an exposure to COVID-19, with close contacts permitted to remain in the classroom as long as the results are negative, according to the District 220 website.

The strategy can only be used when “both the COVID-19-confirmed case and close contact were engaged in consistent and correct use of well-fitting masks, regardless of vaccination status,” officials warned.

Read more here.

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bhpd-logo-2-2021The Barrington Hills Park District Board will hold their regular monthly meeting this evening via Zoom at 7 PM. Some of the topics for discussion include:

  • Swearing in New Commissioners
  • Pickleball Court at Countryside School
  • Hanover Park Tennis Club use of tennis courts at Countryside School
  • Review of outdoor arena options and next steps

A copy of their agenda can be viewed here. Instructions for accessing the meeting can be found here.

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“Due to the uncertainty of the pandemic, the district is currently preparing three plans for the start of the 2020-21 school year in the fall:

  • Plan A: re-open school in the fall as normal with new public health guidelines and protocols
  • Plan B: develop a hybrid which would combine Distance Learning instruction with in person instruction, while following strict guidelines as outlined by the CDC (Center for Disease Control), IDPH (Illinois Department of Public Health), and ISBE (Illinois State Board of Education)
  • Plan C: start the year with all Distance Learning instruction

The district expects the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) and the Illinois Department of Health (IDPH) to release guidelines over the next couple of weeks for the reopening of schools in the fall. Barrington 220 will continue to keep our community updated. In the meantime, we hope everyone stays safe and healthy this summer.”

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Restaurants, which previously were only able to do pick-up and delivery orders, as of Friday are able to have outdoor seating. Egg Harbor in downtown Barrington already had an outdoor patio and is continuing to use that but had to take out a few tables to make sure there is an adequate amount of social distance, said restaurant manager Timothy Best.

Best said the restaurant implemented having an alarm go off every 15 minutes to signal all employees to stop what they’re doing and wipe down every hard surface. They also have to regularly check that tables are maintaining 6 feet of distance, he said.

Only employees are required to masks, he added, unless a customer goes inside to pick up an order.

“We want the guests to feel comfortable outside. Most guests that are coming outside to dine in are looking for a normal experience … and we’re trying to supply that to the best of our ability right now,” Best said.

Read more here.

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