At their only joint meeting of the year, Evanston’s two school boards Monday night agreed that preparation for non-academic careers is just as important an objective as preparing students for college.

District 202 and 65 board members face each other across the ETHS meeting room.

Designed to prove to the community that the elementary (District 65) and high school (District 202) boards and staffs actually do talk to each other, the two boards met on the high school’s turf in a giant semi-circle, with 202 on the left and 65 on the right, as they heard a PowerPoint discussion on college and career readiness and common core standards from two of their top instructional administrators: assistant superintendents Susan Schultz of District 65 and Diep Nguyen of District 202.

Even though not all of the high school’s graduates are going on to college, Nguyen said, the school intends to prepare them to pursue at least some additional vocational training, noting that much of the knowledge and skills gained from the high school experience are valuable for both the “VoTech track” as well as the academic track.

Both of the district superintendents emphasized that communications between the two districts is a regular occurrence. “Our staffs work together on a fairly regular basis,” declared District 65 Superintendent Hardy Murphy. “They are not strangers any longer,” he said. District 202 Superintendent Eric Witherspoon added that such cooperation is essential to meeting their goal of “educating all the students at the highest level.” 

Charles Bartling

A resident of Evanston since 1975, Chuck Bartling holds a master’s degree in journalism from Northwestern University and has extensive experience as a reporter and editor for daily newspapers, radio...

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