July 21, 2008

Dist. 23 Will Be Shuffling Teachers

By Sue Ter Maat

[email protected]@dailyherald.com

Prospect Heights District 23 will likely be shuffling teachers around grades as the number of kids ebbs and flows, with a projected gain of about a half-dozen kids next year, district officials said.

The board recently looked at enrollment projections, which affect teacher allocation and class sizes.

The district has experienced a declining enrollment for the past few years, but it's projected to increase by about six kids next year to 1,441 kids from 1,435 this school year, district officials said.

In the 2004-2005, enrollment was 1,541 kids, which declined to 1,491 the next year. Last school year, it was 1,470.

While some grades will see classes eliminated and others added, overall class sizes will still fall within general district guidelines, said Superintendent Gregory Guarrine.

"The good news is that we are seeing younger kids (coming into the district) in the kindergarten class, but we are losing some in the older grades," Guarrine said.

At Eisenhower Elementary School, the second and fourth grades would increase from two to three classes, while the third and fifth grades would decline from three to two classes.

At Ross Elementary, the incoming kindergarten class has been on the rise from 77 in the 2006-2007 school year to 91 this year with the expectation of the class to hold steady at 90 next year, district officials said.

At MacArthur Middle School, the school's 22 teachers could be shuffled just slightly. Now, there are eight teachers in the sixth grade but one could be moved to the seventh grade section, while the eighth grade will likely not see a change.

The enrollment projections help the district determine where to allocate resources, Guarrine said.

The board will not take final action on an enrollment plan until next month, he said

For more information, call the district at (847) 870-3850.

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