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Brief from the Board Meeting on September 6

Discussion – Update on the Implementation of Positive Psychology Research:
In School District 54, we have long recognized the importance of collaboration, as evidenced by our work with professional learning communities. The training and implementation of positive psychology in the district has further unified our more than 2,000 employees, as they share a commitment to each other’s happiness and the happiness of their students.

In 2016, the District 54 administrative team began examining research from Shawn Achor’s book The Happiness Advantage. Through the Orange Frog Workshop, all staff developed an understanding of positive psychology research and its impact on them personally and professionally. Staff continued the work of the one-day workshop across the school year and dove deep into its understanding as well as application for them and their students.

Achor further examined positive psychology research and its impact on interconnected success through his book Big Potential. The District 54 Happiness Trainer Team designed a one-day workshop to kick off the 2018-2019 school year. The workshop, called Orange Island, expanded our understanding of the interconnected nature of happiness and success. School and department teams engaged in meaningful dialogue, created team action plans, and had fun further exploring the interconnectedness of happiness.

Public Comment:

  • A Schaumburg man asked the board to investigate why his wife is no longer allowed to serve as a bus monitor.
  • The second speaker recommended the school district consider having dogs available at schools to support school safety.

FOIA Requests:  Five requests were received and replied to since the last meeting regarding the bid tabulation for security improvements; records of any cases, separation agreements or payments as a result of sexual misconduct, harassment or sex/gender discrimination; and purchase records from April 30 to current.

Consent Agenda:  The School Board approved the following items on the Consent Agenda.

  • Minutes of the regular and closed-session meetings on Thursday, August 9, 2018.
  • Resignations, leaves of absence, retirement, employment, salary adjustments and re-employment of personnel.
  • Checks dated August 3, 17 and 31, 2018.
  • Additional depositories and custodians of district funds and the resolution naming the depositories.

Superintendent’s Report: Superintendent Andy DuRoss reported to the School Board on its request to look into nondigital communication for District 54 residents who are not parents. The result is that most districts are not printing and mailing print publications due to the cost and inability to measure whether people are consuming the information.

New Business: 

  • The Board approved a three-year contract with Discovery Education for STEM Leader Corps training.
  • The Board approved a contract with Discovery Education for its STEM Connect digital resource for the 2021-2024 school years.
  • The Board approved a contract with Discovery Education for its Digital Streaming Plus digital resource for the 2021-2024 school years.
  • The Board approved a resolution authorizing the purchase of 1.173 acres of the Fairview Park parcel of land from the Hoffman Estates Park District to allow future flexibility with increased student enrollment.
  • The Board approved a resolution authorizing the transfer of ownership and sale of the Twinbrook property located at 1035 Ash Road, Hoffman Estates to the Hoffman Estates Park District.
  • The Board had the first reading of revisions the following policies:
    • Policy 2:100 – Conflict of Interest-Board Members,
    • Policy 2:105(b) – Board Members-Prohibited Political Activities and Limitations on Accepting Gifts,
    • Policy 2:120(a) – Board Member Orientation and
    • Policy 2:230 – Public Participation at Meetings of the Board.

Future Agenda Items: The Board had a discussion about communications for community members who don’t have children in our schools and don’t have access to technology.


  • The Board announced that the District 54 Run to Read is Sept. 23.
  • Board members thanked everyone who volunteered for the Foundation at Schaumburg’s Septemberfest and invited everyone to support the next Foundation fundraiser by dining at Lou Malnati’s on Sept. 19.
  • The Board read letters from Dirksen students inviting them to visit the new classrooms.
  • Board members praised the work and dedication of employees who helped open the Autism Resource Center at Hale School.
  • They also praised the students and staff at Addams Junior High School who celebrated the happiness movement in District 54 when Good Morning America and best-selling author Shawn Achor visited last week.

Adjournment: The Board adjourned at 8:35 p.m. to closed session to discuss employment/appointment matters, school matters, legal matters and the semiannual review of closed-session minutes.