Board Meeting 08.29.22


Photo By Abbey Mondi

Director of Educational Services 6-12 Patrick Raleigh speaks in front of the board regarding the new plan for remote learning on emergency days. Raleigh explained the plan for online classes to take place during emergency days for grades 2-12.

     On Monday, Aug. 29, Kaneland Community Unit School District 302 hosted their regularly scheduled Board Meeting at Kaneland Harter Middle School. All board members were present with the exception of Vice President Meg Junk and Addam Gonzales. After the Pledge of Allegiance was recited and a roll call was taken, the board started the meeting by recognizing community member Fran Eggleston. 

     Eggleston, who is also the district´s Director of Special Services, works closely with the Elburn Lions Club to provide Kaneland community members who have special needs with a free three-hour wristband to the fair. The session includes an hour of carnival games along with another two hours of rides.

     “The Elburn Lions put on a wristband session for students who struggle with the ability to participate in carnival activities. They struggle because the lights are too bright, the noises are overwhelming and there are too many people there,” Eggleston said.

     A significant part of the meeting regarded the district’s plan for remote learning on emergency days. If the Kaneland administration can see that the weather will be severe the next day, they will call off school by 8 p.m. the night before. Calling off school by 8 p.m. will allow teachers to prepare content for the following day. Grades 2-12 will be taught via Google Meet, allowing students to still participate in school. 

     “During regular school hours, it would be a remote learning day. Learning would happen as close to the natural progression as it would should students be physically in the building. Know that per state law, we have five of those emergency days. Those days have not changed and we can still use them,” Director of Educational Services 6-12 Patrick Raleigh said. “We can use a traditional emergency day or a school closure day if the weather was unexpected and came through after 8 p.m. If severe weather came through at 2 or 3 in the morning or 5 or 6 in the morning the following day, we would then call that a traditional emergency day. It would be a non-attendance, non-emergency day, and it would be added on to the end of the calendar school year.” 

     Early Childhood through first grade students will not be having Google Meet classes. Instead, they will be given blizzard bags. These bags are filled with lessons and activities for the younger students to do while the emergency day takes place. 

     “Our Early Childhood through first grade students will have a Google Meet link posted on Canvas as well. They will have three hours to log on so that families can ask questions about a blizzard bag activity. They can log on, talk to a teacher and ask a question,” Director of Educational Services EC-5th grade Dr. Sarah Mumm said.

     Other staff members who do not have a classroom or a specific group of students would send messages to the families who may need additional help with technological issues. If a Kaneland staff member or student is concerned about their Wi-Fi capabilities from home, they are encouraged to reach out to their building’s main office so Kaneland can lend one of their hot spots.

     The next update in the meeting regarded changes to the employee handbooks. In the upcoming year, the administration is planning to make Juneteenth a paid holiday. There were also changes regarding harassment policies, vacation days and probation periods, as well as drug and alcohol tests for Kaneland bus drivers. The board also officially decided to get rid of bus notes allowing students to go home with one another. 

     “Our bus routes are generally really full. We don’t want to get in a situation where two or three friends are on a bus when people who typically ride the bus now don’t have room,” Associate Superintendent Dr. Julie-Ann Fuchs said. 

     The next Board Meeting will be held on Monday, Sept. 12.