TLDW – D155 March Board Meeting


The District 155 school board meeting was held at the district office this month on March 15, 2022.

The Prairie Ridge news team provides the following synopsis to make the information more convenient and accessible. The beginning of each section is hyperlinked to the responding timestamp in the publicly accessible video on the D155 Board’s YouTube channel.

Board member Mr. Blake was absent from this month’s meeting.

Kicking off the meeting was a recognition of the Crystal Lake Central cheer team; congratulating them on winning first in their bracket at state. 

Following them was recognition of Shane Moran who was the state champion for wrestling in the 182 lb. weight class and Dylan Carson who placed second in the 160 lb. weight class at state.

Finishing up recognitions, Superintendent Mr. Steve Olson read the story of how Mike Cruz, a Crystal Lake South custodian, saved a student from choking to death.

After a quick break for pictures, Shannon Podzimek gave the Communications and Community Relations Report. Nine FOIA requests were received within the last month and all had been listed on the board agenda.

Next came public participation, where members of the community are given three minutes each to speak to the board.

Jamie C spoke to the immense love and care Coach Lamb gives to the Crystal Lake cheer team highlighting her drive and passion to not only create an amazing cheer team but amazing people too.

Kim M. addressed the last time she spoke before moving on to raising her concerns about a variety of school policies including trans-inclusive bathrooms, mask policy, sex ed, and history.

Theodore S. read the story of Eve about a young person with questions about gender. 

Tiffany W. continued the Eve story and stated trans medicine and a school supporting it is destructive and makes schools no longer safe learning environments.

Devin H, president of the education association, spoke of his shock at the public participation of last month’s meeting and stressed the importance of focusing locally during school board meetings.

Bruce J. runs a group that meets every Monday in Cary and refers to an email he sent to the board inviting them to come and watch a documentary about the real cost of what is happening to today’s youth. 

James T discusses the accessibility of the sex-ed opt-out form.

Sue J. also addresses sex education, more specifically Illinois Senate Bill 818 which proposed schools align with the K-12 sex-ed program. She asked the district to pre-publish its plans for the course so parents can evaluate if they want their student to participate.

Following was the Financial report by Dr. Kevin Werner, including information regarding the breakdown of ESSER funds now available online.

Also, an update in fees means the cost of Drivers Ed will increase to help cover raising gas prices.

There will also be a 10% increase over the next three years to cover building costs.

The committee for the 2022-2023 fiscal year was approved and cleared to begin work on the 2022-2023 budget.

Troy Stinger gave the Operations Report: the district decided upon the janitorial company that will service the district office.

Associate Superintendent of HR Jay Sargeant gave the report of Human Resources: 

A hearing was held to discuss the honorable dismissal of six staff members: two science teachers, two English teachers, one social science teacher, and one vision itinerant, due to the decrease in the number of students in the district. After the short hearing, in which a member of the public raised a question regarding how none of those dismissed were administrators, the motion for the dismissal was approved.

Finally, Mr. Steve Olson, superintendent, recognized Shannon Podzimek for all the work she has been putting in to highlight the schools’ musicals and state qualifying teams. He also expressed his appreciation for the Mayor of Cary Mike Cruise.

The next District 155 school board meeting will be held on April 19th at 7:00 pm in the Prairie Ridge High School library, 6000 Dvorak Drive, Crystal Lake, IL 60012.