Community Engagement

Voice Recognition

Community Engagement

Community Engagement

Mount Prospect School District 57 is a smaller, community-based district where each child receives the personal attention and support they need to succeed as we prepare them for high school and beyond. 

Our community partners together to inspire every student, every day to reach their full potential. Parents, teachers, and community members collaborated on our Portrait of a Graduate, and we’ve now developed a curriculum that ensures our students graduate with those key characteristics: they are empathetic, adaptable, collaborative, critical thinkers, and resilient. We’re working closely with High School District 214 to ensure our graduates are prepared for high school. And our students are even actively involved in this effort, participating in principal advisory councils and serving as student board members next year.

This family feel and individualized approach creates a special environment in which our students thrive. Our students perform well above the state average and student achievement continues to grow every year, leading to our schools being highly rated, with two being rated exemplary and two commendable. We’re proud of our district and love our schools—that’s why so many of our graduates come back to raise their families in this community, and why so many of our staff members and teachers are district graduates and residents.

However, the State of Illinois has put a significant obstacle in our way: we are now required to implement full-day kindergarten by 2027, and we don’t currently have the space or staff to meet this unfunded mandate. All our neighboring districts offer full-day kindergarten. The families in our district deserve the same opportunity for their children.

Our community is also requesting additional improvements they would like to see in our schools. We have the largest class sizes of any of our peer districts. Many classrooms and science labs look the same as they did since 1970, limiting the types of learning and instruction we can provide our students. Teachers provide one-on-one and small group instruction in hallways and stairwells because of a lack of space. We don’t have dedicated space for innovative and STEM programming. Art and music students are relegated to mobile classrooms. We don’t have enough student support spaces, and the space we do have isn’t private. Our gyms are too small and locker rooms antiquated. Two of our schools don’t have fire sprinklers. There are accessibility challenges at multiple schools, and our infrastructure and mechanicals continue to age.

We are one of the most fiscally conservative districts in the region, always accomplishing more with less. We are committed to transparency, collaboration, and accountability. We spend the least, by far, compared to our peer districts. We operate with a balanced budget every year, with each department prioritizing spending in ways that benefit students the most. And we’re very proud of our citizens finance advisory committee, made up of parents, community members, and even former students with financial backgrounds, who actively work with district staff and our board to ensure we’re spending money responsibly.

But with the limited funding available to us compared to our surrounding districts, we are not able to achieve full-day kindergarten or the other improvements desired by the community without additional funding. To implement full-day kindergarten without additional revenue, we would have to increase class sizes and use mobile classrooms—creating safety concerns—and pull resources from other places like athletics, music and art.

That’s why our community is coming together to develop a fiscally responsible plan to address these challenges. We have an opportunity to provide our early learners with a more comprehensive kindergarten experience, which has proven to improve their academic success throughout their entire lives. And we can improve learning environments, increasing student achievement and meeting the needs of all students now and into the future.

Our kids deserve the same quality educational opportunities available to students in neighboring districts. This transparent, collaborative process will identify the key improvements we wish to make to our schools, resulting in a community-driven plan for the future of our district.

PHASE 1 of community engagement efforts

District 57 is hard at work investigating the best path forward that will solve our Full-Day Kindergarten and facilities challenges. Check out our Phase 1 progress here!

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