701 W. Gregory Mount Prospect, IL 60056  |  847-394-7300
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Open Letter to Village Board, Admin and Mount Prospect Residents from School Board President Joe Sonnefeldt

4/22/19

An open letter to the Village Board, administration and residents of Mount Prospect:

The Board of Education of School District 57 in Mount Prospect would like to clarify that we do not take a position either “For” or “Against” any particular residential or commercial development project in the village, or regarding any particular feature or aspect of such developments. At recent village meetings there have been statements made by individuals attempting to cite school district concerns or characterize our position in a way that would support their own position regarding downtown development.  Mount Prospect Village Trustees and the public should disregard such statements.

The D57 Board recognizes that appropriate, responsible development is necessary for a thriving village and that an expanding property tax base is in the best long-term interest of the school district.  We are also aware of the short-term fiscal challenges presented by both the TIF and the unknown number of students that residential development will bring. Even MORE consequential than the number of new students that may arrive, is the age/grade level of these students and how they will be disbursed among our four buildings, Prospect H.S. and area private schools.  There is no model that can predict this breakdown.

District 57 residents approved a referendum for additional education funding in the spring of 2018. This has given us the option to expand both Fairview and Lions Park Schools to accommodate increasing enrollment that we’ve projected even before new residential developments come to fruition. It’s the school district’s duty to provide services to every child who walks through our doors. In D57 we take that responsibility seriously and will continue to use taxpayer money judiciously to fulfill our mission. That mission does not include wading into the debate surrounding specific residential developments. 

Both Lions Park School and the park itself were included in the TIF district so that the village, park district and school district can work together to address land use and traffic concerns that arise as a result of increased population in that area.  Serious traffic issues already exist around Lions Park School and they will likely increase should that building and student population expand.  Having that building included in the TIF should enable District 57, the park district and the village officials to work collaboratively to reconfigure land and direct TIF funds in order to alleviate these issues.  Residents are right to expect their government entities to cooperatively address any problems and to find sound solutions once changes to student population and traffic patterns are better understood.

Sincerely,

Joe Sonnefeldt

President, Mount Prospect District 57 Board of Education

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Mount Prospect School District 57
701 W. Gregory
Mount Prospect, IL 60056
Phone: 847-394-7300
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mount prospect school district 57
701 w. gregory
mount prospect, il 60056
phone:  847-394-7300
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