Skip to content
Dunlap Community Unit School District #323

Dunlap Grade School Celebrates the End of a Great School Year

Our superhero successes this year at Dunlap Grade School are immeasurable. We attained our school SMART goals, earned AR Empowered Educator School Status, successfully administered PARCC for the first time, more fully implemented common core learning standards, and grew as lifelong learners, critical thinkers, readers, and mathematicians. Our students and staff followed our Royal Decree: Respect Others, Respect Yourself, and Respect Learning!

What’s more important is that our students grew as empathetic and compassionate individuals. Our Service and Leadership organization raised funds for the school, completed drives for other organizations, and fostered their own leadership skills. Our students engaged in learning opportunities with the Center for the Prevention of Abuse as they learned through the Second Step Program. We partnered with the Dunlap to Peoria St. Jude Run and raised over $15,000 for the St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. Our students truly are ROYALS.

In addition to our accomplishments as whole, Many of our teachers achieved individual recognition:

• First Grade Teacher, Mrs. Donavan, earned the Distinguished Service Award for Outstanding Young Educator from the Peoria Jaycees.

• Third Grade Teacher, Miss Mahrt, received a $500.00 grant from the Illinois Department of Natural Resources that resulted in a new butterfly garden for DGS.

• Fifth Grade Teachers, Mrs. Piper and Mrs. Wooden, led their students through a video competition with Scotties Trees Rock that resulted in a $2,000 award and future outdoor learning area.

• Third Grade Teacher, Mrs. Lanser, and Fifth Grade Teacher, Mrs. Wooden, led the DGS Service and Leadership Club through a project that raised over $700.00 for equipment and supplies for specials classes.

Submitted by: Mandy Ellis
Dr. Lisa Parker, Superintendent

Dunlap School District #323 Launches Facebook Page

Goal #4:  To Ensure a Satisfying and Productive Partnership with Families and the Community. 

Dunlap School District #323 launched a facebook page today in order to enhance better communication with our stakeholders.  The page can be found at .  We hope you will “like” our facebook page and check back often for frequent updates.   There is also a link on our  homepage to the facebook page in order to give all of you quicker access to district information.  Right now most of the information is taken from our district blog, and we will work to add more information about our district as school gets closer to starting in the fall.  We look forward to continuing to find ways to better communicate with all of you.


Submitted by:  Dr. Lisa Parker, Superintendent



Dunlap Valley Middle School 8th Grader – Track State Champion!

Dunlap Valley Middle School would like to recognize a very special accomplishment. Dunlap Valley Middle School track student-athlete, Kiara Pauli, earned two state championships during the 2015 IESA State Track Meet held on May 22 and 23 at the Eastside Centre in East Peoria, Il.

Going into the weekend, 8th grader Kiara Pauli was the top seeded 8th grader in the 100 meter dash, 200 meter dash and discuss throw. Kiara Pauli defended her Class AA100 meter dash title by winning the 100 meter dash with a time of 12.72 seconds. Kiara also won the state championship in the Class AA discuss with a throw of 107-01 feet.
Kiara finishes her middle school career with three track state championships.

The 8th Grade girls track team also finished in 6th place at the state meet!

7th grader, Aidan Schulze, also medaled finishing in 8th place in the 100 meter dash with a time of 12.49 seconds.

Congratulations to Kiara, and to all of the Dunlap Valley Middle School student-athletes that competed during the 2015 IESA State Track Meet.

Submitted by: Antonio Johnson
Dr. Lisa Parker, Superintendent

Dunlap Board of Education Names New Board Member

Dunlap School District #323 is pleased to announce the appointment of Karen Disharoon as a Board of Education member to fill the vacancy created by the resignation of Bruce Hay who is relocating out of state.  Mrs. Disharoon will serve for the remainder of the unexpired term, which ends in 2017.

Karen has been very active in the District, serving in various volunteer capacities including as a classroom volunteer, picture person, library helper, science fair judge and as a member of the District Leadership Team.  Additionally she has been active in the parent advocacy group, Parents of Dunlap Students and with other volunteer community roles including Rotary North, St Jude Children’s Research Hospital fundraising and the Peoria Regional Learning Center.

She is a native of central Illinois and received her undergraduate degree from Augustana College in Rock Island, Illinois, double majoring in Political Science and Public Administration.  She has worked as a legislative analyst for the Illinois legislature, as a lobbyist and is currently a campaign, fundraising and public policy consultant.

The District began the search process in May, and ten candidates expressed interest in the vacancy. Four candidates were interviewed, and Mrs. Disharoon was selected as the new Board member and appointed on June 17, 2015 at a Special Board meeting.

Dawn Bozeman, President of the Board of Education, stated, “We are delighted to have Karen Disharoon as a member of the Board of Education. Karen brings a wealth of experience and will be a great addition to the board.”

University of Illinois Music Visits Dunlap High School

The choirs at Dunlap High School were visited by the U of I cappella men’s group “ILL Harmonic” last week. Our very own Jon Brattin, DHS ’13, is a two year member of the ensemble and contacted Ms. Reece about doing a performance at DHS during their Central Illinois tour. Students, parents, and even a few alumni who ventured back were treated to a half hour concert during homeroom with popular tunes including “Classic”, “This Is How A Heart Breaks” and “My Girl” arranged by another DHS ’13 alum, Andrew Jensen. The group is comprised of mostly underclassmen, sporting a variety of majors and hometowns. They came complete with beat boxers and choreography, and presented a very entertaining show for everyone in attendance.


Submitted by: Jen Reece
Dr. Lisa Parker, Superintendent

Madrigal, Court Singers, and Show Choir Auditions Hit the 323 Stage!

A wonderfully talented group of students came together on May 15th to audition for the 2015-2016 school year! Over seventy students competed for spots in next year’s Madrigals, Court Singers and the Show Choir “FORTE!”. Those vying for show choir position worked quickly to learn a pretty complex dance to Michael Jackson’s “Black or White”. The senior members of show choir were on hand to assist choreographer Robin Hunt as the group ran through the steps. All participants were also required to sing 24-32 bars of a song of their choosing. The judging panel spent six hours judging and critiquing students in a number of categories to complete the new roster of performers.
Results from this year’s auditions can be found on
Congrats to all who auditioned!! It’s going to be another great year!


Submitted by: Jen Reece
Dr. Lisa Parker, Superintendent

Hickory Grove Students Support the St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital

Goal #4: To Ensure a Satisfying and Productive Partnership with Families and the Community: On May 15, the students of Hickory Grove Elementary School partnered with the Dunlap to Peoria St. Jude Run to participate in the 3rd annual Laps for Life, Kids Helping St. Jude Kids fundraising event. The students collected donations in advance and then ran during P.E. to honor those children who are too sick to run for themselves. Prior to the event, the students viewed a short presentation about St. Jude and its mission to advance cures and prevent childhood cancer through research and treatment, to share this information with doctors around the world and to make certain that all children receive services regardless of their ability to pay.

Through the efforts of the students, administration, faculty and many volunteers, Hickory Grove Elementary School is proud to announce that they will be donating $6,873.35 to the St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. That is enough money to pay for one whole day in the hospital for one patient. Mrs. Hoerr’s 2nd grade class enjoyed an ice cream party for being the class with the highest donation amount of $908. Thank you students!

Submitted by: Linda Siekmann
Dr. Lisa Parker, Superintendent

Illinois Principals Association Recognizes Two Dunlap High School Students

The Central Illinois Valley Region of the Illinois Principal’s Association honored local students at their annual Student Recognition Breakfast earlier this month. Seniors Abigail Jockisch and Allison Verville from Dunlap High School were honored. Following graduation Abigail plans to attend Bradley University. Allison will be attending Maryville University.


Submitted by: Tom Welsh
Dr. Lisa Parker, Superintendent

Illinois Principals Association Names Scott Jones as Assistant Principal of the Year

On May 4 the Central Illinois Valley Region of the Illinois Principals’ Association named Scott Jones as Assistant Principal of the Year.

Mr. Jones previously served as band instructor at Brimfield High School before being named as the assistant principal at Dunlap High School. Scott was recently named the Athletic Director at Morton High School and will begin his new responsibilities in July. Congratulations Scott!

Scott IPA

Submitted by: Tom Welsh
Dr. Lisa Parker, Superintendent

Bradley University Chemistry Club Demo Crew Visits Ridgeview Kindergarten

Goal #1: To Continuously Improve Student Growth and Achievement: For the second year in a row the Bradley University Chemistry Club Demo Crew visited Ridgeview Elementary School to share the wonders of Chemistry with our youngest students. The children learned about density and weight, gases, and chemical reactions. We learned that some bowling balls float on water! We saw chemical reactions on paper, in liquids and in gases. The chemical reactions that made colors change, created gases or produced a BOOM were our favorites.

The Bradley University Demo Crew is advised by Dr. Dean Campbell. Also helping with today’s demonstration were Ryan Niemeier (BU graduate) and Jon Tiessen (BU student). Thank you to Dr. Campbell, Ryan and Jon for volunteering their time and to Mrs. Niemeier for funding the visit.

Submitted by: Janelle Niemeier
Dr. Lisa Parker, Superintendent