Community Consolidated School District 21 is located in the northwest corner of Cook County, with about 25 square miles that includes parts of the communities of Wheeling, Cook County Buffalo Grove, Arlington Heights, Mount Prospect, Prospect Heights, Northbrook, and unincorporated Cook County. Nearly 7,000 students, representing 4,500 families, attend School District 21 schools. The estimated population of the region is about 135,000 with a wide range of cultures and income levels.
The ethnic make-up, based on State defined terminology, of District 21’s students and families is: 34% White, 2% Black, 53% Hispanic, 9% Asian/Pacific Islander, 1% Native American, and 2% Multi-Racial/Ethnic. The average daily attendance rate is 95%. About 62% of the families are classified as low income, with 38% of the population identified as Limited English Proficient (LEP) students, with dozens of languages spoken in the homes of District 21 families.
School District 21 operates on a budget of approximately $100 million, with an annual operating expenditure per pupil of over $16,000. The Elementary Pupil/Teacher ratio is 17:1 in comparison to a State average of 19:1. The pupil/administrator ratio is 244.7:1 compared to the state average of 230:1. Approximately 80% of the teachers have earned a Master’s degree.
School District 21 includes Hawthorne Early Childhood Center, with additional early childhood (pre-school) programs located within some of our elementary school buildings. There are 9 Kindergarten through fifth grade elementary schools, which primarily serve students located within a specific geographic location. There are 3 middle schools, each of which serves incoming students from 3 elementary schools. All schools utilize the District 21 Curriculum. Students’ academic learning focuses on reading, writing, mathematics, science, and social science. Additionally, students also learn and are assessed on their progress with the Learner Qualities, essential skills necessary for success in our global society and technology-based world, in all of our schools. In addition to the core curriculum, elementary school students participate in Art, Music, Physical Education, and Research & Information Literacy classes. Middle school students participate in a range of exploratory classes that include: daily Physical Education, Art, Drama, Music, Career & Community Connections, Global Awareness, Designing the Future, Spanish and/or Spanish for Spanish Speakers.
All District 21 schools have School Improvement Plans (SIP) in place. These are reviewed and modified annually by each school’s School Improvement Team, which includes the school principal and a range of teachers. The School Improvement Plans are designed to focus on improvement in the following areas related to our Professional Learning Community Areas of Focus of Inclusionary Practices and Authentic Learning.