D211 Post: Conant Theatre to Stream Their Production of Freaky Friday

            Theatre students at James B. Conant High School, like others across District 211 have adapted to a socially distanced environment by producing their fall play as a full video production.  Under the Direction of Katherine Apperson, more than 50 Conant High School students and faculty have collaborated over a three-month period to create the 2020 musical, “Freaky Friday,” which will stream Thursday, November 5th, 7 p.m. through Saturday, November 7th at 7 p.m.      

Both in front of and behind the camera, the students had to adapt to new styles and techniques.  Junior Allison Wise, who served as the set construction chair, said she had to create a different style of set.

            “This was a new experience for us,” she said.  “Normally we have a 30-foot rule, which says that the set has to look good from a further distance away.  Because the camera shoots much closer, we had to work on finer details and ensure we had believable perspective.”

            Senior Teagan Whiteside agreed with Wise and added that consistency between takes could also be a challenge.

             “On stage, if one run isn’t exactly the same as another it’s ok because there is a new audience each show,” she said.  “But, on camera each take has to be exactly the same, otherwise when we edit the different videos together the differences become very obvious and draw attention away from the story.”

            Fellow senior Reyna Parayno noted that filming multiple takes could be physically draining as well.

            “Having to perform dances with the same amount of energy over and over again could be exhausting,” Parayno said.  “It was definitely a challenge for a lot of the cast.”

            Film crew member, senior Lauren Hall pointed out that some of the challenges could lead to exciting experiences.

            “It’s been difficult to keep things consistent between takes, as well as learn how to edit audio and video in a few days in order to put the show together” she said.  “The best experience though has definitely been being able to watch finished scenes and say ‘we did that.’”

            Tickets to stream “Freaky Friday,” can be purchased at Showtix4u.com.


D211 Post: National School Lunch Week (Slideshow)

October 12-16, is National School Lunch Week.  Throughout District 211 members of our food service department have continued to work to ensure that, even during remote learning, out students have access to stable meals.   To date, District 211 has provided more than 1 million meals since the initial move to remote learning, and our food service staff continue to pack more meal bags every day while still providing normal meal service for teachers and staff members working in the schools. 


D211 Post: 30 District 211 Students Named National Merit Semifinalists

            Last month, the National Merit Scholarship program released its list of the 2021 semifinalists in their 66th annual list. 

            These academically talented high school seniors have an opportunity to continue in the competition for some 7,600 National Merit Scholarships worth more than $30 million that will be offered next spring. To be considered for a Merit Scholarship® award, Semifinalists must fulfill several requirements to advance to the Finalist level of the competition.  Semifinalists are selected based on scores on the Preliminary Scholastic Aptitude Test/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (P.S.A.T./N.M.S.Q.T.).

            William Fremd High School students Nathan A. Arango, Ysabelle F. Buenavista, Cara A. Chang, Stella J. Chung, Gabriel K. Classon, Joshua P. Corrigan, Manas P. Gandhi, Natalia M. Gorecki, Allison Y. Kao, Anshul Kaushik, Sravy Konasani, Ethan Lin, Michelle Liu, Angela Ma, Mahima Malhotra, Gavin K. McCarthy, Gwendolyn R. Nicketta, David D. Phillips, Jessica W. Rao, Sufiya M. Shazia, Rachel Ye, Angelina J. Zheng, and William Zhong have been named semifinalists.

James B. Conant High School students Nicholas K. Chen, Martin G. Ferris, Rei Komura, Sanjana Rajesh, and Matthew Schmitt were selected as semifinalists.

MaryEtta M. Brigham from Palatine High School and Mia L. Vollkommer from Schaumburg High School have been named semifinalists.

D211 Post: Conant Service Clubs Collect Hygiene Supplies for Women in Need

            In the weeks before James B. Conant moved to remote learning as a result of COVID-19, service organizations RISE and the Cultural Awareness Club paired up to collect feminine hygiene products in order to donate them to Girls Forward, a Chicago based community of support dedicated to creating and enhancing opportunities for girls who have been displaced globally by conflict and persecution.

            Conant senior Sanjana Rajesh said she was inspired to hold the joint drive after taking a women’s studies class with Social Studies teacher Amy Spizzirri.

            “We were talking about things like the pink tax and other feminine issues,” Rajesh said.  “I told her that we [RISE] had donated to Girls Forward in the past.  When she recommended a feminine product drive, I said, ‘well here’s an organization.”

            Apooorva Bommareddy, a class of 2020 graduate who headed up the Cultural Awareness Club’s participation, said one point of the drive was to create a conversation.

            “The fact that it’s not talked about is an issue,” she said.  “We hopped this would help change the cultural norm.  It was exciting to see the whole school get involved.”

            “We had junior and senior boys who brought in tampons and saying, ‘I didn’t realize how much this cost,’” added Spizzirri.

            Due to the COVID-19 transition to remote learning, the organizers of the club were never able to get an accurate total of how much was donated, though Spizzirri stated that it was, “a minivan full.”

            “Unfortunately, we didn’t get a chance to count it,” Spizzirri said.  “Once I received permission to come in the school to pick it up, we just had to hurry up and load it into my van.  With the seats down, it was all the way up to my front seat.”

            Girl Forward informed the organizers that their donation would be provided to recent refugees and immigrants in the Chicago area who may be in need.

D211 Post: District 211 Begins Afternoon Academic Support Session

            On August 24, Township High School District 211 began its Afternoon Academic Support Sessions.  The sessions will allow students to sign up for limited, in-person education and study assistance. 

            Through the sessions, students can sign up for support in general areas such as math tutoring labs, reading and writing support or quite studies; or they can sign up for sessions which focus on specialized content such as needing lab equipment or unique manufacturing equipment. 

            While a majority of the Afternoon Academic Support Sessions will be hosted virtually, there will be limited opportunities to schedule in-person sessions.  The sessions will have a very limited number of seats available, so students are encouraged to sign up through SignUpGenius early. 

            In-person sessions will observe very strict health and safety guidelines.  Every student who attends a session will be required to complete an online wellness survey prior to arriving at the school.  Once at school, students will have their temperature checked to verify they are fever-free.  Only students who have a scheduled session, have completed the wellness survey, and are fever-free will be allowed to enter the building.  While in the building, all students will be required to maintain appropriate social distancing and wear a face mask at all times. 

            District 211 transportation will have mid-day bus routes available for each session.  Bus information can be found in the Infinite Campus parent and student portals.  It is recommended that students report to their assigned stop 15 minutes after 4th period on the day of their scheduled sessions. 

            Any questions should be addressed to the student’s team administrator or guidance counselor. 

D211 Post: Food Service and Transportation to Pair Up for Meal Delivery

Staff members load meal bags into the back of a District 211 school bus March 13, 2020.

            Following the decision by Township High School District 211 to begin the school year with remote learning, the food service and transportation departments have announced a plan for student meal deliveries. 

            Beginning August 13, District transportation will start delivering meal bags to students.  Under the program, students can sign up for weekly meal deliveries by filling out the Google form here.  Once a student fills out the form, they will receive a response which will notify them of which day of the week is their delivery day.  Each meal bag will contain five breakfasts and five lunches.

            Meal bags will be available at no cost for students who qualify for free or reduced-price lunch.  All others can purchase the meal bags at a cost of $21.  Payments for meal bags can be made through MySchoolBucks.

            Prior to the start of the meal drop-off, District 211 will hold one additional cub-side pick-up August 12 from 1:00 p.m. – 2:00 p.m.  Bags will be available at a cost of $21 for those who do not qualify for free or reduced-price lunches.  Pick-up locations for each school are listed below.


August 12 Meal Bag Pickup Locations:

Palatine High School – North side of the building near the bus hub

Fremd High School– Door 6 near the auditorium

Conant High School– Door 25 near the atrium entrance

Schaumburg High School– Door 4 near the bus parking

Hoffman Estates High School– Door 6 on the Northwest side of the building

D211 Post: District 211 Creates Equity Team

            The Township High School District 211 Board of Education approved a motion to establish the creation of the District 211 Equity Team during their July 16. 2020 meeting.  The team, which will be led by a core committee of staff members, students, parents, Board of Education liaisons and community members, will be responsible for a variety of tasks which will work to promote equity across the District. 

            In her statement to the Board of Education, Superintendent Dr. Lisa Small said, “District 211 has a strong history as a school community where concepts of equity are valued and integrated into the mindset, actions and daily interactions of every student, staff member and parent. We have been, and continue to be, aware of the necessity that we understand and respond to the ever-changing needs within both our school community and our broader world.”

            Among its responsibilities, the team will be tasked with including and affirming the voices of students, staff and families from our District community, defining the organizational priorities and practices that contribute to equity across District 211, analyzing qualitative and quantitative data to identify goals, metrics and accountability measures to ensure high levels of equity across District 211, and Creating a strategic equity plan that will drive short- and long-term systematic changes and improvements for our entire community.

            The core committee will work through a 4-phase structure to create the District’s Equity Plan.  The phases, which begin August 2020 and run through June 2021 are:

    • Phase 1: Stakeholder Engagement – Beginning August 2020
    • Phase 2: Research and Community Input (equity audits, focus groups, opportunities for community feedback) – Beginning October 2020
    • Phase 3: Data Analysis and Application – Following Phase 2
    • Phase 4: Development of Strategic Equity Plan – Drafted in Spring 2021

            The core committee will present the District 211 Strategic Equity Plan to the Board of Education during the June 2021 meeting.