East St. Louis School District receives $90,000 grant for math books

News-DemocratOctober 15, 2013 

East St. Louis School District 189 was awarded a $90,000 grant from the Monsanto Fund to improve math performance. The grant money purchased math curriculum books for students in grades kindergarten through third grade that are aligned to the Common Core State Standards and use evidence-based methodology.

"We appreciate the Monsanto Fund's support in helping to provide textbooks that will align with the more rigorous standards of the Common Core," said Dorland Norris, deputy superintendent. "The new books follow the key shifts of the Common Core to solid conceptual understanding and a high degree of procedural skill and fluency."

To provide more information to parents and the community on the Common Core standards and how the district has been implementing them, a Key Communicator Network meeting on the Common Core will be held at 6 p.m. Nov. 18 in the district's boardroom at 1005 State St. in East St. Louis. Members of the nonpartisan, nonprofit organization Advance Illinois will present information on Common Core State Standards for Illinois.

Parents and community members are encouraged to attend. Educational resources on the Common Core can also be found on the district's website at www.estl189.com.

The following local students were honored with "Do The Right Thing" awards during a ceremony Tuesday at the National Shrine of Our Lady of the Snows in Belleville: Haylee Rauckman from Jefferson Elementary School in Belleville District 118; Zach Claxton from Carriel Junior High in O'Fallon District 90; and Timothy Burton from Coolidge Junior High in Granite City School District. Do The Right Thing is a program that recognizes St. Louis-area students for exhibiting positive character traits.

Schools throughout the metro-east are expected to take part in a simultaneous earthquake drill at 10:17 a.m. Thursday. Illinois is one of nine states participating in the multistate drill. The other states participating are Arkansas, Oklahoma, Missouri, Indiana, Kentucky, Tennessee, Alabama and Mississippi.

The drill is part of the Great ShakeOut to promote earthquake awareness and preparedness. All nine states participating in the drill could feel tremors from an earthquake in the New Madrid Seismic Zone and most could feel the effects of a quake in the Wabash Valley Seismic Zone.

Local school districts participating in the ShakeOut include Belleville District 118, Collinsville District 10, Columbia District 4, East St. Louis District 189, Freeburg District 77, Granite City District 9, Marissa District 40, O'Fallon District 90, Shiloh District 85, Triad District 2 and Wesclin District 3. Area private schools are also participating in the event including Althoff Catholic High School, Blessed Sacrament School, Collinsville Christian Academy, Zion Lutheran School in Belleville and St. Mary-St. Augustine School.

For more information, visit http://shakeout.org/centralus.

Unity Lutheran Christian Elementary School in East St. Louis has been awarded accreditation from the National Lutheran School Accreditation Commission.

The achievement represents a milestone for Unity, a mission project of the Southern Illinois District of the Lutheran Church -- Missouri Synod. The school, which opened in 2003 with three students, now serves 190 children of all faiths in pre-kindergarten through eighth grades. Unity graduated its second class of eighth-graders in May.

Unity Lutheran Christian Elementary School is at 1600 N. 40th St. in East St. Louis. For information, contact Paul Miller, Unity's Development Director, at 618-874-6605 or visit www.unityesl.org.

The Illinois State Police will participate in a safety fair from 9:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Friday at Belleville West High School. Illinois State Trooper Calvin Dye will speak to driver's education, health and some physical education classes. The safety fair also will include interactive stations to teach students about the dangers of drunken driving, how rollover crashes occur and driver safety.

Edwardsville School District 7 is hosting a series of parent information workshops this fall. "Planning for Your Child's Future" will be held from 6:30 to 8 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 22 at the Jon Davis Wrestling Center.

A workshop on "Strengthening Your Child's Language" will be held from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 7 in the Goshen Elementary School Media Center; and "Helping Your Child Develop Emotional Self-Control" will be held from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 12 at Goshen Elementary.

The free workshops are available to all District 7 families; however, registration is required. Parents should register by contacting LaTosha Holeman at 618-656-1182 or lholeman@ecusd7.org. More information about the workshops can also be found online at http://www.ecusd7.org.

Do you have an item for Education Matters or an education-related story tip? We want to know about it. Send your ideas to Jamie Forsythe at education@bnd.com or call 618-239-2562. Follow her on Twitter at twitter.com/BND_JForsythe.

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