- Ellis Middle
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Community Invited to Hear Update about U-46’s Work to Create an Educational Facility Master Plan
Jan. 25, 2021
Two meetings this winter will allow parents, students, staff, business owners, residents, and other community members to receive an update on School District U-46’s long-term work to create an Educational Facility Master Plan that supports the District’s future.
The first meeting will be conducted via Zoom at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 27. Those interested can register to attend at bit.ly/ShareOut-0127. The second meeting is scheduled for 7 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 10 and the registration link is at http://bit.ly/Phase2-0210.
“I am looking forward to sharing the results of the early stages of this important work with our community,” said Dr. Jeff King, Deputy Superintendent of Operations. “I think it will spur some great discussions about how our U-46 space - our schools and facilities - align with our educational mission and core functions in the 21st century.”
U-46 began the long-range process to develop an Educational Facility Master Plan just before the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. The District is working with the DLR Group, a Chicago-based planning, design and engineering firm that will lead six phases of work with a final recommended master plan to be completed fall 2021, pending any additional changes due to the COVID-19 pandemic. A draft Educational Facilities Master Plan will go before the Board of Education for final review and approval.
U-46 and DLR Group have collected information for the first phase of work, studying educational adequacy and the physical condition of all schools, as well as gathering feedback from teachers, staff, students and community members through surveys and small group virtual sessions. Those efforts have revolved around how well each school building is currently meeting the needs of students, staff and family members via its instructional space, physical comfort, and the integration of building space and modern technology to support collaborative teaching and learning.
The Jan. 27 meeting is designed as a community update of the findings from Phase 1. Those attending the meeting will learn how to read the overview or “snapshots” of each of the District’s 56 school buildings; see enrollment projections; and hear the results of surveys, staff, and community listening tours. A Phase 2 Community Engagement Session is scheduled for 7 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 10. The work in Phase 2, focused on developing a vision for education in a sustainable, equitable district. It has involved a variety of workshops with students, staff, teachers, administrators, and community members.
Each meeting is expected to last about two hours. Translation will be available at both meetings for the District’s Spanish-speaking families, and they will be recorded and posted on the District’s YouTube channel.
Community members who have questions before or after the sessions are encouraged to use the “Educational Facilities Master Plan” button on Let’s Talk and visit the Educational Facility Master Plan section of the website here.