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U-46 Board primed to cast votes on proposals

By Seth Hancock
  The Board of Education in School District U-46 will vote on several proposals totaling just under $530,000 at its upcoming meeting on Monday, Jan. 23. Most of the proposals were presented on Jan. 9.
  A digital literacy curriculum proposal, costing $312,087 initially and $241,337 annually, was presented on Dec. 12, 2016 and was expected to be voted on at the Jan. 9 meeting. No explanation was given at the meeting why the vote was moved.
  Board member Jeanette Ward has publicly presented instances of bias in the resources aligned with the proposal. There were only four of seven board members in attendance at the Jan. 9 meeting, and a 2-2 vote would have defeated any proposal.
  The board will be asked to vote on a $51,570 expenditure item with Apple Inc. which would be paid for by the nation’s taxpayers via a Perkins grant. The proposal is to purchase 90 IPADs with 128GBs.
  According to the proposal, it’s “to align the automotive technology curriculum with industry standards.”
  U-46 CEO Tony Sanders said “the size is needed for the number of (applications) that they need to utilize for the program.”
  A proposal costing $59,225, which would come out of the education fund, would allow 103 high school students (63 from South Elgin, 40 from Streamwood) to take part in an AVID Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) program. It costs $575 per student broken down to $500 for tuition and registration fees, $65 for Illinois Nurse Assistance Competency Evaluation fees and $10 for Basic Life Safety Certification fees.
  It would allow students “to obtain a CNA certificate” and would “take students into long term care facilities.”
  The proposal is needed because there are few qualified teachers within the district and board member Sue Kerr asked “what are our plans for next year?”
  Terri Lozier, assistant superintendent, said: “There are a lot of requirements for the CNA instructor, and the instructor that was hired this year was hired on a contract contingency and was unable to meet the contingency.”
  Lozier said there are two teachers meeting the requirements but are teaching other classes, and the district will continue to recruit for future years.
  Noting the AVID label, Ward asked a clarifying question that this isn’t associated with the Advanced Via Individual Determination. Lozier said “this is just a name for their CNA program.”
  The final proposal was with Bibliotheca, LLC in order to buy security gates for the Streamwood and Elgin libraries that are currently under reconstruction. The total cost is $107,022, which would come out of the education fund if approved, $52,886.28 going towards Streamwood’s and $54,135.88 towards Elgin’s.
  Jeff King, chief operations officer, said this is the “last piece” for completing the reconstruction.
  The purchase would include Radio-Frequency Identification (RFID) gates, free standing kiosks, tagging carts, RFID software licenses, Library Connect software, gates and self-checks for data and servicing of the equipment and a digital library assistant.
  Kerr asked if the checkout system was comparable or compatible with the current system and Jackie Johnson, coordinator for secondary literacy and libraries, said “currently we have a scanning system, so this is actually replacing that scanning system” and will allow self-checkouts.



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