Illinois Report Card Launches with new data

The Illinois Report Card has been updated and released with its annual refresh of new data and, in this year’s case, some additional data. The Illinois Report Card provides schools and other stakeholders a wide range of data to provide insight into trends in and across schools. The Illinois Report Card is overseen by the Illinois State Board of Education and implemented by the Illinois Interactive Report Cards Office at Northern Illinois University. Each year, as required by law, the Illinois Report Card is released with data from the previous school year at the end of October.

This year, the major new data element includes site-based expenditure data, which was reported by school districts for each school to the State for the first time based on the requirements of the federal Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA).

Illinois Report Card - SBER Data District Detail

This data shows the overall amount spent by school, and this has garnered widespread reporting from media outlets throughout Illinois; This article from the Daily Herald is just one example.

In addition to the inclusion of the site-based expenditure data, there is a whole range of additional changes to the website from the addition of growth data on the Illinois Assessment of Readiness (IAR) to new fields that can be used to disaggregate data to an updated color scheme. A full list of updates can be found here in the 2019 Illinois Report Card Release Notes, which are also published on the Illinois Report Card homepage.

October 2019

Hinckley-Big Rock – #AuthenticLearning with Agriculture and Beyond

Hinckley-Big Rock School District 429 is situated in the countryside between Aurora and DeKalb, Illinois. Hinckley-Big Rock has been a leader statewide in building a strong foundation for all students with career readiness and postsecondary options through its implementation of the HBR Career Readiness Plan. This plan, which builds skills and experiences for students from elementary school through high school, was developed within the school district and is based on the Illinois Postsecondary and Career Expectations (PaCE) Framework.

Not only has Hinckley-Big Rock invested a great deal of time and energy in ensuring that students have experiences and skills to help them make choices about careers and postsecondary learning, but Hinckley-Big Rock also seeks to provide students with authentic learning experiences in which their “classwork” is “real work”. While this is desired across the curriculum and all courses, these efforts are most noticeable within the Agriculture, Food, and Natural Resources Career Pathway.

Hinckley - Big Rock Future Farmers of America Wagon

Like many school districts in Illinois, Hinckley-Big Rock has a rich history with providing students with authentic learning experiences through extra-curricular activities. With the understanding that such experiences can lead to deeper, more complex and longer lasting learning, ensuring that students learn through authentic problem-based units and lessons is a priority. Hinckley-Big Rock is furthering these efforts with a multi-year initiative to take advantage of the size of its property and expand the resources available for student learning on the working farm on the east side of the high school building.

Over the past couple of years, a small orchard has been planted and water and electrical have been added and/or upgraded. Next, a building will be added to support the fully functional agricultural operations in which students participate as part of their coursework and learning.Hinckley - Big Rock Water Pump - Outdoor Agriculture Classroom

Being able to fully experience the work allows students to learn both career-specific knowledge and skills as well as develop the type of skills that are needed across careers as defined by the Cross-Sector Essential Employability Competencies (see page 6 of this PDF).

These efforts are not limited to just agriculture nor Career & Technical Education (CTE) courses at Hinckley-Big Rock, but they are also noticeable outside the building as Indian Valley Vocational Center CTE students also construct the actual dug-outs that generations of student-athletes will use for decades to come.

Hinckley - Big Rock Dugout Construction Tweet

October 2019

Illinois Postsecondary Profiles website launches

This week, the Illinois Postsecondary Profiles website publicly launched. The website is a joint effort of the Illinois Board of Higher Education and the Illinois Community College Board, and it is being implemented by the Illinois Interactive Report Cards Office at Northern Illinois University as is the Illinois Report Card website for school districts throughout Illinois.

The Illinois Postsecondary Profiles website brings together a wide range of data from a variety of sources and presents it in new informative ways for postsecondary institutions across the State of Illinois in this first phase of its roll-out. You can view this information by institution as pictured below.

Illinois Postsecondary Profiles - View School Info Detail

You can even view information across institutions at the same time using the View schools side-by-side button as pictured below.

Illinois Postsecondary Profiles - View schools side-by-side - Detail

Future updates for the Illinois Postsecondary Profiles site are planned. The additional functionality that will result from these releases includes the ability to:

  • Explore the data by occupation/major interest area
  • Investigate the experiences of different groups of people in pursuit of their dreams!

We look forward to providing additional updates on these developments through the P-20 Network in the coming months and years.

October 2019

Rochelle – Mapping out success for the future during high school

Like other schools, Rochelle Township High School District 212 has embarked on a focus to ensure that all of its students are thinking forward beyond high school while they are still in high school. This effort is focused both on helping ensure that students know, understand, and have a variety of postsecondary options while also participating in significant and ongoing planning and counseling during high school.

At Rochelle High School, which is located about 20 miles directly west of DeKalb, Illinois, a series of key indicators for future success have been identified, and together these have been termed the Tomorrow Readiness Student Profile (pictured here below).

Rochelle Tomorrow Readiness Student Profile - Cover
Rochelle Tomorrow Readiness Student Profile – Cover

Rochelle Tomorrow Readiness Student Profile - Interior
Rochelle Tomorrow Readiness Student Profile – Interior

Following each semester, student information in the Tomorrow Readiness Student Profile is updated by school staff and shared with all students and parents. This ongoing education allows students and parents to keep up-to-date on their progress, and it has the secondary benefit of making the Tomorrow Readiness Student Profile a living tool in the lives of students and families.

Many schools and school districts are embracing the creation of a holistic view of a student that includes learning critical skills that go beyond traditional academics. For example, one way that these are now defined in Illinois as a result of the Postsecondary & Workforce Readiness Act is through both the Cross-Sector Essential Employability Competencies and the Entrepreneurial Competencies (see page 6 of this document). Rochelle has included these skills that are so critical for both careers and citizenship as the Efficient, Adaptive, and Self-Reliant Learner Behaviors. Where Rochelle goes one step further is by having teachers assess students in each of these areas and, most importantly, asking students to self-assess in each of these areas.

Alongside what courses a student has taken and their personal and career interests, the Tomorrow Readiness Student Profile provides a strong foundation on which students and their families, counselors, and teachers can engage in detailed discussions about both an individual student’s strengths as well as the target areas for additional growth during their high school experience and beyond.

October 2019