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Dunlap Community Unit School District #323

English-as-a-Second-Language Summer School 2014 – Another Successful Year

Goal 1:  To continuously improve student growth and achievement.  July 31st was a bittersweet day for 32 elementary English language learners who said “Goodbye” to their English-as-a-Second-Language (ESL) teachers:  Stacey Combs, Jessica Nauman, Tetyana Ovsienko, Genia Workheiser, and a new ESL teacher in the District, Katie Pintozzi.  ESL students enjoyed coming to ESL summer school, which was housed at Ridgeview Elementary School, to improve their English language through reading, writing, and vocabulary development activities.

While younger English learners explored topics such as the beach, wild and domestic animals, and back to school, the older participants learned about the United States.  The students even authored a book called Me on the Map, which included their family tree, created with the assistance of their parents.

Students were assessed weekly, and the teachers were very pleased with the growth progress throughout the program.  It was another successful year for ESL summer school!

Submitted by:  Teytana Ovsienko


Dr. Lisa Parker, Interim Superintendent

Alaina Potts Named to USA Swimming Scholastic All American Team

Senior Alaina Potts has been selected to the 2013-2014 USA Swimming Scholastic All American Team. Her selection was based on her grade point average, ACT score, and her qualifying times. Alaina currently holds Dunlap High School swimming records in the 50 freestyle, 100 freestyle, 100 breaststroke, 200 medley relay, and 400 free relay. She was a medalist last season at the IHSA state swim meet, placing 9th in the 100 breaststroke. Congratulations, Alaina!


Submitted by: Dr. Lisa Parker, Interim Superintendent

New and Exciting Changes in Food Service

The food service department would like to welcome back all of our students, parents and staff to some new and exciting changes.

One big change this year is that the high school students will have a brand new beautiful kitchen and cafeteria to explore.  New menu options include homestyle-served food, fast-track grab-and-go food items, a sub station with made-to-order cold sandwiches, a salad bar, a la carte items, and more. The cafeteria is now a one-stop shop for students.

On July 1, 2014, the USDA implemented nutrition standards for all food and beverages sold in schools (Smart Snacks). These new regulations will impact all food and beverages sold to students on the school campus during the school day, limiting junk foods. This will impact everything sold a la carte in the cafeteria, school stores, snack bars, vending machines, and through fundraising. An overview of the new regulations will be posted online under “Lunch Menus”.  Students may not see some of their favorite foods sold a la carte this year, but they will see healthier food options.

Also new and exciting this year are healthy vending machines at our high school and middle schools.  These vending machines will be available during school hours and lunch periods. Everything sold in the machines is a healthier option, replacing a lot of the high-calorie, fat, sugar and sodium foods that are normally in vending machines.

We’re also trying something new on the lunch menu beginning August 25th, offering a meatless garden chef salad that’s available as a complete meal with or without milk at the middle and elementary schools. The chef salad gives students that may have dietary restrictions another option.  Elementary school children who would like a garden chef salad for lunch must inform their teacher during the morning lunch counts. The cafeteria staff will only make the number of garden chef salads that have been pre-ordered.  Elementary schools will have 8-oz bottled waters available for purchase at a price of $.60 each during lunch. The bottled water is considered an a la carte item and cannot be substituted for milk.  Since middle schools don’t take lunch counts, those students will be on a first-come, first-served basis for the garden chef salads.

With all of the changes this year, the cafeteria staff is excited to come back and start a new year of healthy, nutritious and delicious meals for the students!

Submitted by:  Lisa Leitner


Dr. Lisa Parker, Interim Superintendent

Dunlap School District Opens School to 4,301 Students!

The Dunlap School Community will empower all students to excel in a global society. Yesterday marked the first day of student attendance for the 2014-15 school year, and it was a success! We welcomed 4,301 students to Dunlap. The students were excited to be back to see their friends and teachers, and smiled with anticipation about what the new year has in store for them. Students spent time learning how to open lockers, how the cafeteria works, about bus departure and arrival, specific classroom rules, etc. Our teachers have spent numerous hours in preparation for today, and the classrooms looked fantastic. Welcome back to all of our students and staff. We think this will be the best year yet!

Submitted by:  Dr. Lisa Parker, Interim Superintendent

Dunlap Staff Returns for the 2014-2015 School Year

The staff for the Dunlap School District enjoyed a complimentary breakfast from Commerce Bank on Wednesday, August 13, as they returned for the 2014-2015 school year.  This was followed by a welcome and messages from Board President Amy Fairfield Doering and Interim Superintendent, Dr. Lisa Parker.  The K-5 elementary teachers then engaged in professional development that was focused on learning about improving instruction of the common core state standards and continuing development of their understanding of the PARCC assessment. Leading the professional development was Cindy Dollman, Assistant Regional Superintendent of the Peoria Regional Office of Education. Cindy led teachers through various activities to deepen their understanding of the shifts in the common core standards. Teachers worked in grade-level teams to analyze lesson plans and activities using the Equip Rubric to determine quality of the lesson. This professional development afternoon was hosted by Hickory Grove Elementary School.

Other staff were involved in training, such as learning more about the Next Generation Science Standards at the middle school level, participating in department-level meetings, learning information about students with diabetes, and preparing for the possibility of a student having a seizure.

We are looking forward to the students returning on Friday, August 15!

Submitted by:  Dr. Lisa Parker, Interim Superintendent

Dunlap High School Fall Tryouts

Dunlap High School Early Fall Practice Schedules – 2014

All levels begin on Monday, August 11th from 7:30-10:30 and will meet at Dunlap High School stadium.

Cross Country:
Will meet for practice at 3:30 pm on Wednesday, August 13th in front of Dunlap High School stadium.

Girls and Boys Golf:
Will meet on Wednesday, August 13th at 6:00 am and Thursday, August 14th at 7:00 am at Kellogg Golf Course .

Girls Tennis:
Will meet from 4-6 pm on Wednesday, August 13th and Thursday, August 14th at Dunlap High School tennis courts behind Dunlap Middle School.

Girls Swimming:
Will meet on Wednesday, August 13th from 8-10 am and 4-6 pm at Dunlap High School pool.

Boys Soccer:
Will meet on Wednesday, August 13th, Thursday, August 14th, and Friday, August 15th from 4-6 pm at the new soccer complex at Dunlap Valley Middle School.

Will meet on Wednesday, August 13th and Thursday, August 14th from 9 am-12 pm and 5-8 pm in the main gym of Dunlap High School.

Submitted by: Greg Crider

Dr. Lisa Parker, Interim Superintendent

District Implements Bulk Purchasing Program

Goal 5:  To obtain, efficient, effective, and equitable use of resources.  The District recently implemented its bulk purchasing program.  Last spring, it was decided that certain products would be purchased in bulk in order to save money in the buildings and grounds budget.  Bids were taken for paper and some custodial supplies, and an inventory system was developed by our technology department.  The program involves paper and custodial supplies being requisitioned by the schools/departments every two weeks.  The supplies are inventoried as they arrive and leave the Dunlap Activity Center.  All supply purchases are approved by the District Office, and significant data will be tracked regarding usage of the supplies.  The first delivery to schools took place on Thursday, August 7, 2014.  A special thank you to our staff for their flexibility and cooperation as we implement a new program in our District.

Submitted by: Dr. Lisa Parker, Interim Superintendent

Board Splinters Newsletter Now Available

Goal 4:  To ensure a satisfying and productive partnership with families and the community.  The 2014 edition of the District’s newsletter, Board Splinters, is now available on the District website.  This edition provides updates about the District’s current financial status, Phase II construction at Dunlap High School, implementation of an integrated human resources/finance software program, student achievement highlights, the elementary world language program, new statewide assessments, the social and emotional learning curriculum, and what’s new in the District.

In the past, this newsletter has been mailed to all households in the District.  As a cost-saving measure for the 2014-15 school year, the newsletter has been posted to the website instead of mailing paper copies to all households.  Anyone interested in receiving a paper copy should contact Sherri Espinosa at or (309) 691-3955 (option 7).

Click on the following link to access Board Splinters:

Board Splinters – Summer 2014

Submitted by Dr. Lisa Parker, Interim Superintendent

Dunlap Staff Members Participate in Dunlap-to-Peoria St. Jude Run

A huge thank you to our Dunlap staff members who participated in the Dunlap-to-Peoria St. Jude Run on Saturday, August 2.  The runners stopped at Banner Elementary School and Hickory Grove Elementary School, and they were met with much enthusiasm throughout their run. The runners from Dunlap raised $90,000, and the route was 32 miles long.  We appreciate the extra efforts of our staff members and everyone who participated in the St. Jude Runs this past weekend.

Submitted by Dr. Lisa Parker, Interim Superintendent

Back-to-School Important Dates!

We are excited about the start of the 2014-15 school year and students filling the classrooms!  Below are some important dates to remember:

 School Secretaries Return  July 30th
 New Teachers’ Orientation  August 4th and 5th
 Pre-K Open House for Bright Futures and ECSE (Parents/Students)  August 11th at 6:00 p.m. at Hickory Grove  Elementary
 Kindergarten Open House (Parents/Students)  August 12th at 6:30 p.m.
 Teachers’ Institute  August 13th and 14th
 Freshman Orientation  August 14th
 Grades 1-5 Open House (Parent/Students)  August 14th at 6:30 p.m.
 1st Day of School for Students  August 15th (Full Day)
 Back to School Night – Dunlap High School  August 18th at 6:30 p.m
 Back to School Night – Middle Schools  August 19th at 6:30 p.m.
 Back to School Night – K-5 Elementary (Parents Only)  August 21st at 6:30 p.m.

Submitted by: Dr. Lisa Parker, Interim Superintendent