Shiloh District 85 Board of Education discusses ongoing financial concerns

Superintendent Dale Sauer

SHILOH – Shiloh School District 85 continued to discuss financial concerns at their February board meeting. Superintendent Dale Sauer spoke to the board and attendees about his presentation to the Shiloh Village Board at their February 6 meeting where he told them that the district was in some dire financial distress.
“Again, I believe it is important to maintain a relationship where they understand our successes and obstacles,” said Sauer. He spoke candidly to the board about finances and the 37 percent poverty level the district faces, but also spoke of their county high test scores and other celebrations of success.
Continuing the financial discussion, Sauer spoke to the school board and attendees about the County Schools Facility Sales Tax and a presentation he made to district staff. Sauer noted “Our website has comprehensive information under the tab of ‘District News.’”
This district is looking ahead, and Sauer said “Even without a state budget, March is the time of year for cost containment planning and strategies. I would like to schedule a finance meeting in early March to discuss some of the possibilities available to us. The goal would be to emerge from the meeting with clear recommendations and options for the board.”
In Other News:

  • District 85 will be adding a fourth grade class, as enrollment numbers have ballooned to maximize one of the rooms at their maximum 30 student capacity. A fourth grade parent meeting was held on Wednesday February 15 to create the third classroom and decide how to divide them up in a fair capacity.
    “We determined the final class list after using volunteers and new students and then finally, by being as transparent and as fair as we could, by conducting an open lottery. The meeting went very well. By the time we got to the lottery portion of the evening, we had 14 volunteers and new students of the 19 we needed to even out the classes. Only five names needed to be drawn. Most importantly, all fourth grade students had a wonderful Thursday rearranging the rooms, having snacks and treating the day as a new first day of school,” said Sauer.
  • The district will be reworking their Special Education Workload Plan.
    “It had not been revisited since 2009. We met and had good discussion revolving around the plan, its intent, and our structure. I appreciate the participation of our group and the candor of the discussion,” Sauer said.
  • A recent fundraiser for Shiloh schools in conjunction with Savers was successful.
    “We filled a 20 foot box truck completely in two and a half hours.  We receive about twenty cents per pound on specific items, particularly clothes.  Final tallies showed that Shiloh Schools will earn a little over $900 that will be split between the SES and SMS student activity funds. Thank you to Mrs. Meyer for spearheading this effort,” said Sauer.
  •  The board voted to approve the 2017-2018 school calendar.
  •  The board approved an eighth grade graduation date of Thursday, May 18 2017, and Sauer encouraged the board to be thinking of graduation speakers before the next meeting, which will be held Monday, March 20 at Shiloh Middle School.