Eight large Illinois high schools receive grants
to create small learning communities

November 29, 2000

(217) 782-4648 or (312) 814-3490


Springfield - Eight large Illinois high schools will receive grants to create smaller, more personalized learning communities for their students.

The federally funded Smaller Learning Communities Program will award $1.34 million in grants to help students in larger high schools connect more closely with their classmates and teachers. These personal relationships foster academic success as students are less likely to dropout, have fewer discipline problems and perform better in smaller schools.

The eight Illinois high schools awarded grants for planning are the Chicago Public Schools ($250,000); Consolidated High School District 230 in Orland Park ($50,000); Marion, Clinton and Washington Counties, Salem ($50,000); School District U-46, Elgin ($48,200); and Waukegan Public Schools ($50,000).

Implementation grants will go to Consolidated High School District 230, Orland Park ($308,079); J. Sterling Morton HS District 201, Cicero ($303,619); and Rockford Public Schools 205 ($280,145).

“We congratulate these high schools on obtaining new resources to assist their students,” said State Superintendent Glenn W. McGee. The State Board provided technical assistance for this grant and is available to do so for other grants. “I am pleased that the State Board could partner with local school districts in applying for this funding as we work together to make Illinois schools Second to None

The Small Learning Communities Program is intended to involve parents, students, educators and community members in forming teams to evaluate, plan and implement strategies that will best serve the needs of their students.

Funding is available for one year for planning and implementing the smaller learning communities. Schools may use the money to create career academies, mentoring and other teacher-advisory systems, schools-within-schools, and career clusters that would map out  curriculum for a particular field.