On October 31, the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) released the Illinois Report Card for the 2017-2018 school year. We are proud to announce that all three Lincoln-Way high schools ranked among the top 10% in the state, all three earning summative ratings of Exemplary, the highest ranking ISBE offers. This status is based upon a number of factors including SAT scores, Graduation Rate, and Freshman on Track. Lincoln-Way students’ SAT scores were the highest in the Southwest Suburban Conference, and Lincoln-Way Central, East and West all scored among the top four schools in Will County. Lincoln-Way’s Graduation Rate is 97%, compared to the state’s 85%, and 95% of freshmen are on track to graduate, compared to the state’s 86%. We are extremely proud of this Exemplary designation from the State, and would like to thank our students, staff, parents, and the entire community for their support and commitment to excellence.
While the focus at Lincoln-Way continues to remain on academics and student achievement, the District has also continued to improve its financial status.
The results of the District’s fiscal year 2018 annual financial statement audit was presented at the October 18 Board of Education meeting. In fiscal year 2016, the District had 16 recommendations for improvement cited in the Management Letter from the external auditors. Since then, administration has worked diligently to resolve these comments over the course of the past two fiscal years. As a result, the fiscal year 2018 Management Letter from the auditors contains just two remaining comments from the original sixteen. This shows significant improvement in the financial health of the district.
Also demonstrating financial improvement is the all-funds surplus of $7,667,917 in 2017. This is the second consecutive year the District has reported a surplus, after nearly a decade of deficit spending. According to Dave Meyer of Wermer, Rogers, Doran & Ruzon, LLC, the district went from the prior several years of having fund balance decreases, to two years of fund balance increases, which was “…quite a turnaround for the District. The District is definitely heading in the right direction from a financial standpoint.”
The audit also showed that Lincoln-Way spends less per student than the majority of high school districts in the state. Out of 96 that reported, there are 77 districts that spend more than us per student, yet Lincoln-Way still maintains the academic rigor and achievements of the higher spending districts.
In addition to our academic and financial accomplishments, our students and staff have excelled extra-curricularly as well. Highlights just this fall include:
* The Lincoln-Way Marching Band had an incredible competition season: Grand Champions at the 2018 State of Illinois Marching Band Championships, as well as a third consecutive Class 6A first place victory; Fourth place overall finish (out of 74 bands) at the BOA St. Louis Super Regional; Class Champion and overall Grand Champion at both the 2018 Naperville Central Invitational and Andrew Invitational; and Overall High achievement in Music, Visual, General Effect, Percussion and ColorGuard at both competitions.
* All three football programs once again earned their way into the IHSA Football State Playoffs.
* In Boys’ Golf, Lincoln-Way Central’s Sean Curran placed second in the state in the individual state competition. Lincoln-Way West’s Boys’ Golf team won their first golf regional championship in program history.
* The Lincoln-Way Central Girls’ Golf team finished third in the IHSA State competition. Individually, Brianne Bolden placed second and Grace Curran finished seventh.
* Four Lincoln-Way students competed in the IHSA Cross Country Individual State Finals. Lincoln-Way East junior Brett Gardner finished 14th in the 3A Cross Country State meet, earning all-state honors. Lincoln-Way Central senior Andrew Englert placed 57, and junior Jared Kreis placed 123. For the girls, Lincoln-Way Central's Merrigan Allen placed 201.
* All three Lincoln-Way high schools had a successful Homecoming 2018 weeks. It was a week full of school spirit as students and staff enjoyed a wide variety of events from parades, pep rallies, team Olympics, football games, and of course Homecoming Dances. Lincoln-Way Central honored local military and first responders through "A Hero's Homecoming." It was a "wild" week at Lincoln-Way East for their “Jungle Jam” theme, while Lincoln-Way West visited the Land of Oz for "There's No Place Like Homecoming."
As we enter into the holiday season, we look forward to finishing our first semester strong, and look forward to many more accomplishments to come.
My best to you,
Dr. R. Scott Tingley
Lincoln-Way students interested in science fields like medical, physics, engineering, or forensics are getting a jumpstart on their career through the many hands-on courses offered in the Science Department.
Traditional science courses like Chemistry and Biology lay the groundwork for advanced courses and programs offered throughout the District where students can create robots, build bridges, conduct experiments at a national laboratory, or prepare for a medical career
None of these experiences would be possible without the support of local partners. For decades, community members and businesses have invested their time and talents to foster a passion for students’ future careers at a young age.
Since the mid-1990s, Presence St. Joseph Medical Center in Joliet has allowed students to see all aspects of a medical career through the Anatomy and Physiology Medical class. Over the years, partnerships have formed with other area hospitals including St. James Hospital in Olympia Fields and Silver Cross Hospital.
In addition to traditional classroom work, A&P Medical students shadow different departments such as pharmacy, orthopedics, emergency room, radiology and many more to gain an understanding of the day to day functions of a hospital. This course also takes field trips to Advocate Christ Hospital in Oak Lawn to watch an open-heart surgery, the National Cadaver Lab in Lombard, and Lewis University’s Science and Cadaver Labs.
“I have graduated students who range from pharmacists, to physical therapists, nurses, medical school, and dental,” said Lincoln-Way West science teacher Kristen Neuberg, who has taught the course for 11 years.
This is just one example of the many partners that provide authentic learning opportunities for our students.
Argonne National Laboratory is a leading science and engineering research lab in Lemont operated by the U.S. Department of Energy. Earlier this year, Lincoln-Way East students had the opportunity to conduct experiments, research, and present their findings to scientists.
The Will County Forest Preserve collaborates with biology and AP Environmental Science Classes to put ecology into action. For the past nine years, the Forest Preserve works with students to preserve and restore nature.
Partnerships between organizations like the Illinois Clean Energy Community Foundation and The Center for Math, Science, and Technology at Illinois State University foster student interest in the environment and energy by providing learning opportunities on solar energy and SMART grids.
In its augural year, Lincoln-Way Central’s Robotics Club used employees from Illinois Tool Works as a guide in designing and manufacturing a robot to compete in the 2018 SouthWorks Robotics Organization’s competition. Out of 23 teams competing, the Knights placed first in the catapult, third in SumoBot, and third in autonomous racer. This year, another sponsor is joining the team. Quad Pluse LLC in Joliet will be helping with the first competition of this school year named the First Tech Challenge (FTC).
“The Lincoln-Way community and agencies throughout the state of Illinois are generous with their time, energy, and resources to our District. Lincoln-Way students are blessed to have the support from these individuals and companies as they grow in their love for science and engineering,” said Lincoln-Way Central Science Department Chair and Physics/Forensics Teacher Sarah Highfill.
Partnerships with local community members and organizations are imperative to ensure Lincoln-Way students are college and career ready. We thank everyone involved for providing these incredible learning opportunities for our students!
November’s Asset of the Month is Boundaries: Internet Safety and Usage. Students and his or her family have clear rules, guidance, and expectations.
Some suggestions for how to make this Asset happen at home:
· Establish clear boundaries for children’s behavior and discuss/adjust as necessary.
· Expect children to honor your family’s boundaries.
· Do not manipulate your child with shame, humiliation or guilt.
· Focus discipline as a way to teach, not as a form of punishment. Be consistent.
· Have a family calendar on which all family members note where they will be and when.
· Learn who your children’s friends are and “network” with their parents.
· Monitor internet and phone usage.
· Make your home an inviting place for your children’s friends.
“We make time for what we value most.” anonymous