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2017-18 School Calendar

posted Jul 13, 2017, 1:25 PM by Kennan Fagan

The Triad Board of Education approved the 2017-2018 School Calendar as part of their regular meeting on December 19, 2016. Based on the recommendation of the Superintendent of Schools, the Board of Education annually approves a calendar that informs the public of anticipated school holidays, closings, dismissal times and quarter grading periods. The district is also required to submit this information for approval to the Illinois State Board of Education. Both the new 2017-2018 School Calendar and the remaining 2016-17 School Calendar is available for download through the Parent Virtual Backpack

ISBE State Assessment Notice to Parents

posted Mar 14, 2017, 2:55 PM by Kennan Fagan

Notice to Parent/Guardians from the ISBE Assessment and Accountability Division Illinois State Board of Education

We appreciate your investment in your child’s education and want to share with you some information about state and federally required assessments.

Federal law requires the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) to administer certain assessments to all students who attend public schools in the state, including students who attend charter schools.

According to federal law:

  • Students must take an achievement exam in reading/language arts and mathematics each year from third through eighth grade. In Illinois, students take the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers (PARCC) exam.

  • Students must take an achievement exam in reading/language arts and mathematics once in high school. In Illinois, high school juniors take the SAT.

  • Students must take an achievement exam in science three times from third through 12th grade. In Illinois, students take the Illinois Science Assessment in fifth grade, eighth grade, and after completing Biology I in high school.

  • Students identified as English Learners must take an English language proficiency exam once per year until English proficiency is reached. In Illinois, English Learners take ACCESS.

  • Students with the most severe cognitive disabilities must take alternate assessments in reading/language arts, mathematics, and science. In Illinois, students with severe cognitive disabilities take the Dynamic Learning Maps Alternate Assessment (DLM-AA).

These are the only ISBE-required student achievement assessments.

Assessments help improve standards, curriculum, and instruction at the classroom, school, district, and state levels. Assessments play a role in helping ISBE and school districts identify areas where schools need targeted support. The average amount of time spent on accountability assessments represents less than 1 percent of the school year.

However, we want educators and students to devote as much time as possible to learning, not testing. We are working with districts and schools to evaluate local testing programs and reduce the amount of testing for students, where we can.

We encourage students to do their best on all assessments.

Individual districts and schools may have local policies for students who refuse to take assessments on testing days, but federal and state law does not authorize districts or schools to excuse students from testing. ISBE does not provide guidance on “opting out” because such an option would violate the law.

School districts must administer assessments to at least 95 percent of students and at least 95 percent of each student demographic group or face lower public school recognition status, which leads to increased state oversight and puts districts’ state and federal funds at risk. Individual high school students who had the opportunity to but chose not to take the required state accountability assessments (the SAT and the Illinois Science Assessment) lose their eligibility to receive a regular high school diploma. (Current high school seniors who may not have had the opportunity to take one of the required assessments will not be prevented from receiving a regular diploma.)

We encourage students to complete as much of each assessment as they can. If at any point a student feels they no longer can or wish to continue, they may indicate this to the test administrator.

If you have any questions or concerns, please contact the ISBE Division of Assessment and Accountability at (866) 317-6034 or visit www.isbe.net/Pages/Assessment.aspx.

We thank you for your dedication to supporting and serving all Illinois students. Sincerely,

A. Rae Clementz

Assessment and Accountability Division Illinois State Board of Education

Financial Town Hall Scheduled for March 21st

posted Mar 9, 2017, 11:29 AM by TCUSD Webmaster   [ updated Mar 21, 2017, 1:09 PM by Kennan Fagan ]

Community members of Troy, Marine, and St. Jacob are invited to a Triad District financial town hall meeting on Tuesday, March 21st from 6:30 to 7:30 PM at the C. A. Henning Elementary library.  The format of the meeting will be a brief 5 minute presentation on each of the following three topics related to the school district finances and budget. At the end of the presentation, district administration will answer questions from those in attendance related to school finance.  

The three topics covered will be:

  1. Triad District Revenues: We will discuss where the district’s revenue comes from with a focus on local and state revenues

  2. Triad District Expenditures: We will discuss district expenditures and spending with a focus on the major expenditures that school districts such as Triad face.

  3. County Schools Facilities Sales Tax:  We will discuss how the 1-Cent Sales Tax would affect the Triad district and answer any questions regarding this April 4th ballot initiative.  

One of the goals of the Board of Education and administration is transparency and helping to keep our community members informed.  We view this meeting as an opportunity to get district financial and budget information available to everyone and to answer any questions that the community might have.

In order to help our administration prepare for the evening, if you know of questions that you would like answered on the 21st, please fill out the our online form.  Doing this will give us time to gather data and give more complete answers.

Board Resolution for Madison County Facilities Sales Tax

posted Feb 28, 2017, 3:08 PM by TCUSD Webmaster

During the February Board of Education meeting, the members of the board discussed their commitment to using the additional revenue that would be received from the Madison County 1% Facilities Sales Tax and unanimously passed a public resolution. Below are the highlights of the resolution.

The Triad Board of Education intends to use the potential revenue if the ballot initiative is successful in the following manner:

  • Utilize 50% of the sales tax revenue for abatement of capital improvement debt to provide property tax relief.

The remainder of the sales tax revenue will be split between saving for future needs and improving school facilities as follows;

  • Used for necessary and prudent facility related expenses, such as the following:

    • Yearly budgeted expenses such as parking lots, sidewalks, roofs, and other costly major repairs

    • Safety features such as updated video camera systems and  improved disabled access in schools

    • District Technology Infrastructure

    • Preventative maintenance items

    • Energy efficiency measures

  • Saved for future facility projects, which would otherwise be paid for with property taxes, thus avoiding additional debt and interest costs.  These types of projects would include:

    • Expanding and renovating buildings and spaces as needed such as cafeterias, locker rooms, playgrounds, science labs, athletics facilities, etc.

    • Building expansions due to enrollment increases

Recognizing that during the initial year the potential revenue will be limited due to the tax only being in effect as of July 1, the board intends to use 100% of the potential revenue that has been received at the time of Board approval of the 2017 Levy for abatement of capital improvement debt to provide property tax relief.

Attached below is the official Triad Board Resolution for the CSFT potential revenue resolution.

Waiting on Funding from State

posted Feb 15, 2017, 12:49 PM by TCUSD Webmaster   [ updated Feb 16, 2017, 2:28 PM by Kennan Fagan ]

With more than half of the school year now complete, Triad along with all other school districts in Illinois is still waiting for their first state-funded categorical payment of the year to arrive.  In the State of Illinois, each district receives four quarterly categorical payments each fiscal year, to help pay for transportation, special education and other expenses such as early childhood education.  

For Triad, each of the four categorical payments is approximately $650,000 of revenue for the district.  A past history suggests that Triad might only receive three of the four payments before June 30th, however, concern is starting to grow that the district may not even receive these payments.   While state politicians advertise that they are fully funding K-12 education, this is not true.  The State of Illinois has made “State Aid” payments in full, however, not making categorical payments has caused districts to use their reserves to keep services such as bus transportation and special education services operational.  Triad, however, does not have reserves to cover what the State has collected from taxpayers and failed to distribute to Illinois schools.   Therefore, the district is being forced to consider other options.  

This lack of funding from the State of Illinois has district administration and the Triad Board of Education discussing options to cover for the shortfalls for the remainder of the budget year. The Triad FY17 budget submitted in September listed a deficit of approximately $150,000 assuming that all four categorical payments would be received.  The hope was that as in past years, the district would come in better than the budget and finish this year in "the black" with a positive balance.  If the district were to receive three categorical payments, the estimated deficit would be $800,000.  Receiving two of the four categorical payments would increase that deficit to $1,450,000.  If this happens, the district will be forced to “take out a loan” by issuing Tax Anticipation Warrants in order to continue operating transportation services.   

Listed below is a chart of State revenue that should have been distributed to Triad that has not been released as of February 2017.  The amount currently stands at over $1.5 million.  Below is a chart that lays out the delinquent payments to Triad owed by the State of Illinois.

The graph below illustrates transportation expenditures and reimbursement for Madison County Schools. The entire length of the bar represents the expenditures per mile for each district in the 2015-16 school year. Triad’s expenditures in the Transportation Fund were $2.74 per mile--the second lowest in Madison County. Triad owns its own fleet of buses which helps district transportation to run more efficiently.

To continue the discussion on State Funding for districts such as Triad, understand that transportation of students is partially funded by the State of Illinois in the form of categorical payments. Looking at each bar graph, you will notice “red” and “blue” sections. Red indicates expenditures that were reimbursed by the State of Illinois. Blue indicates expenditures that were funded by other sources of revenue. With the lack of state categorical payments this school year, the red section (State Funds) will continue to shrink and the blue section (Local Funds) will continue to expand. The concern is that Illinois is not dispersing State Tax Dollars to public schools as the law requires. This information is not intended to suggest the need for an increase in local property taxes. The intent is to inform our constituents that State Funds are being withheld from public schools with the expectation of continuing the same level of transportation services.

Please contact Assistant Superintendent Jason Henderson at 667-8851 x1100 if you would like more information on the issues related to state funding and Triad finances.  

2017-18 Kindergarten Registration

posted Feb 10, 2017, 2:55 PM by Kennan Fagan

Who: Children who are age 5 on or before September 1, 2017
What: Registration for students entering kindergarten in 2017-2018
When: Thursday, March 30, 2017

Troy Parents will complete Registration & Residency @ 5:00
· Information Presentations will be held in the Silver Creek Gym @ 6:00

Marine Parents will complete Registration & Residency @ 5:30
· Information Presentations will be held in the Marine Gym @ 6:00

St. Jacob Parents will complete Registration & Residency @ 5:30
· Information Presentations will be held in the St. Jacob Gym @ 6:00

  • Marine Elementary parents will meet at Marine Elementary School. (667-5404) 
  • St. Jacob parents will meet at St. Jacob Elementary School. (644-2541) 
  • C. A. Henning & Silver Creek parents will meet at Silver Creek Elementary School. (667-5401) Childcare will be provided at the schools (ages 3-10). Please call the school phone number listed above to reserve childcare for the meeting at the building you will attend. Reservations are required in advance.
In order for your child to be registered for kindergarten for the 2017- 2018 school year, bring Proof of Residency and Original Birth Certificate.

Proof of Residency requires:

Category 1 (One Required)
  • Mortgage Papers (Homeowner)
  • Current Lease 
  • Property Tax Statement 
  • Letter from Trailer Park Manager
  • Renter’s Letter from Landlord
  • Madison County Occupancy Permit
Category II (Three Required)
  • Driver’s License 
  • Vehicle Registration 
  • Vehicle Insurance Card 
  • Voter Registration Card 
  • Current Library Card
  • Recent Utility Bill (Gas, Electric)
  • Recent Cable TV or Credit Card Bill
  • Receipt for moving van rental
  • Current Public Aid Card
  • Home/Rental Insurance Policy

National Assessment of Educational Progress

posted Jan 27, 2017, 1:09 PM by TCUSD Webmaster   [ updated Jan 27, 2017, 1:11 PM ]

We would like to announce that Silver Creek and Henning Elementary Schools have been selected to participate in the National Assessment of Educational Progress, also known as NAEP. You may have heard of NAEP. It is administered by the National Center for Education Statistics, within the U.S. Department of Education. NAEP is different from our state assessment because it provides a common measure of student achievement across the country. The results are released as The Nation's Report Card, which provides information about student achievement to educators, parents, policymakers, and the public.

The actual assessment takes about 90 to 120 minutes.  During that time, students will take an assessment in mathematics or reading on tablets or in paper booklets.  All students will be asked questions about their educational experiences that may be related to performance, such as homework and reading habits.  Please visit http://nces.ed.gov/nationsreportcard/about/booklets.asp to review sample questions.  There is no need to study in preparation for NAEP, but please encourage your child to do their best.

Not every student will be asked to take part in the assessment.  Student scores are anonymous and will not affect student grades or academic records in any way.  Instead, they will be combined with the scores of other students to produce results that reflect student capabilities nationwide.  Please take time to review either the NAEP brochure or video that explains what participation in NAEP means for you and your child.

If you would like to see questions or results from past NAEP assessments and learn more about NAEP and why it is important for students, check out NAEP on Twitter and Facebook, or visit the parents webpage at http://nces.ed.gov/nationsreportcard/parents/.


Inclement Weather School Closing Information

posted Dec 19, 2016, 1:53 PM by TCUSD Webmaster

From time to time, inclement weather conditions or equipment malfunctions can interfere with the school schedule.  It is not unusual for Triad schools to close due to inclement weather based on the fact that the majority of our students are transported on buses.  Even smaller amounts of snow when combined with high winds pose real problems in terms of drifting in the rural areas of Marine, St. Jacob, and Troy.  Cold temperatures alone typically don’t necessitate the need to cancel school unless the temperature combined with negative wind chills or hazardous road conditions make it too unsafe to transport the students by bus.

Student safety is the district’s number one priority.  It is not always easy to predict how the weather will impact the road conditions and parking lots in our area.  Area superintendents work together when determining school closures; however, the weather does not always affect all surrounding communities the same way.  Parents can expect information regarding the closing of school or an early dismissal to be released to the following:

  • Parent Notification System (voice message, email, and text messaging - be sure to subscribe for text messaging, text the word SUBSCRIBE to the number 68453)

We strongly encourage parents to have a current phone number and e-mail address (that is easily accessible) in our school database system.

Once the students are in attendance, Triad schools rarely dismiss early because of inclement weather. In the event that weather conditions deteriorate quickly or equipment malfunctions happen during the school day, the district may be forced to dismiss early in the best interest of the safety of the students.  If this happens, the district will activate the parent notification system to contact parents by phone, email and text messaging.   We also recommend having a plan in place for your child if your child were to arrive home early. On extremely poor weather days, it has been past practice to begin the longer bus routes earlier than normal, so that students will arrive home as close to their regular time as possible.  In the event that weather conditions are deteriorating rapidly, parents may pick up their child(ren) early from school.

During inclement weather or when temperatures and wind chills are in the single digits and below, we recommend that parents review the bulleted suggestions to ensure their students are safe.

  • Parents should ensure that their children are wearing coats and other cold weather clothing such as hats and gloves--especially if waiting at the bus stop.  

  • Have students wait in a vehicle at the bus stop or a nearby residence until the bus is seen approaching the stop.  At stops with several students getting on the bus, parents should work together to share this responsibility.

  • Parents who are unable to provide a warm place for students to wait should take their students to school or arrange a carpooling system in advance for these cold weather days.  (Schools will have their doors open for earlier drop offs on extreme cold weather mornings.)

  • Always make decisions about your child’s attendance on inclement weather considering safety first.  Make the decision based on what is best for your child.  Student safety will always be the district’s number one priority.  For many families, having their students in school is the safest option.  

2016 Levy Information & Board Presentation

posted Dec 12, 2016, 10:22 AM by TCUSD Webmaster   [ updated Dec 21, 2016, 9:29 AM ]

The Triad Board of Education will hold an informational presentation regarding the 2016 Tax Levy before the regular meeting at 6:30 PM on Monday, December 19th at the Triad Central Office.  

At the December Board of Education meeting, the 2016 final levy was presented and approved.  Click here to see the information presented at the December 19th Board of Education Meeting.  One of the highlights of this presentation included a restructuring of a portion of the district’s long term debt in order to see immediate tax relief.  

The amount of tax decrease will depend on the Equalized Assessed Value (EAV). Based on the Madison County Assessor’s estimated EAV increase of 2.1%, the district’s portion of the tax bill should decrease by 1.7 cents.  If the EAV is higher than estimated, this would cause the district’s tax rate to decrease by a larger amount.  Click here to see a tax rate chart which shows what happens to the tax rate as the EAV goes from 0% to 5%.  

Click here to see the certificate of tax levy for 2016 which must be filed with the county by the last Tuesday in December.

5Essentials Survey Information

posted Dec 1, 2016, 12:14 PM by TCUSD Webmaster   [ updated Dec 2, 2016, 12:36 PM ]

The 5Essentials is a comprehensive, evidenced-based survey designed to identify a school's areas of strength and areas that need improvement.  The 26-question parent survey takes approximately 10 minutes to complete.  In order for schools to receive the results of the survey, each school in the Triad District must have at least a 20 percent response rate.  Parents who have students at multiple schools can take the survey for each school a student is enrolled.

To complete the survey, the parents should do the following:
  • Visit https://survey.5-essentials.org/Illinois/ and select Parent Survey.
  • Select language to complete the survey (English or Spanish).
  • Enter requested demographic information.
  • Advance to survey questions.
  • Answer all applicable questions.
  • Click Submit Survey.

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