D204 Hiring Challenges | CAWA Book Drive | Meson Sabika Fundraiser

News Update slate for September 27, 2022 over pedestrian bridge photo
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D204 Facing Hiring Challenges

Indian Prairie School District 204 is facing unprecedented challenges in hiring, like many other districts in the state. At Monday night’s Board of Education meeting, Assistant Superintendent of Human Resources Dr. Louis Lee presented the District’s Annual Hiring Report. He showed data from an Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) Survey, which reported that from 2021 to 2022 the number of unfilled positions at public K-12 districts across Illinois went up by nearly 1,200. Some positions currently needed and hard to fill include teaching assistants, special education teachers, nurses, and bilingual teachers. Also discussed was the number of staff set to retire over the next few years and the need to prepare hiring strategies to fill those vacancies. One way the district is trying to get qualified teachers is through the “Grow Your Own” program, in which district students are taught about the importance of teaching in the hope that after college the students will return to the district as teachers. There’s a “becoming a teaching assistant” informational virtual meeting on October 3 at 5 p.m. More information on that meeting can be found on the district’s website.

Former Aurora Mayor Dies

Former Aurora mayor Robert James O’Connor died at home on September 15, the city of Aurora reported Monday. O’Connor was the 58th mayor of Aurora, serving from 2016 to 2017. He was also a nine-term alderman-at-large for the city, first elected in 1985. Professionally, he was an attorney, working in the fields of real estate and estate planning. O’Connor was a long-time Aurora resident, born there in 1944. He’s survived by his wife Mary, sons Thomas and John, and four grandchildren. Tonight the Aurora City Council will pay tribute to O’Connor at the end of its meeting, which will be live streamed on the city’s Facebook page. A public visitation will be held at the Healy Chapel in Aurora on Sunday, October 16 from 1 p.m. to 7 p.m. The funeral and internment will be private. O’Connor was 78.

DuPage COVID Risk Low

DuPage County’s COVID-19 community level has been moved to low due to a decrease in reported COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations across the county. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) shifted the county to the lower designation on Thursday. The rating is due in part to number of cases per 100,000 residents. For DuPage that’s currently 111. Hospitalizations in the county have also fallen, now at less than 10 per 100,000 residents. Will County’s community level is also now low, with 121 cases per 100,000 residents, and 9.8 hospital admissions per 100,000 residents. With people spending more time indoors due to the cooler weather, DuPage County Health Department (DCHD) officials encourage people to stay up to date with their COVID-19 vaccines, and get a flu shot as well.

CAWA Book Drive For Local School Districts

Naperville School District 203 and Indian Prairie School District 204 were recipients of a multitude of books describing the history and contributions of Asian Americans, thanks to a book drive by Chinese American Women in Action (CAWA). Last night at Anderson’s Bookshop, D203 Superintendent Dan Bridges and IPSD 204 Superintendent Dr. Adrian Talley were joined by CAWA President Nancy Chen and Anderson’s Bookshop CEO Becky Anderson at a public ceremony to present the districts with the 555 fiction and nonfiction books that had been donated. The book drive was launched in light of Illinois becoming the first state in the nation to require all public schools to teach at least one unit of study on Asian Americans.

Meson Sabika Fundraiser For Flood Victims

Today Meson Sabika is running a special fundraiser for flooding victims in Pakistan. 100% of the restaurant’s sales from today will go to UNICEF to be utilized to help with the flooding relief. It’s estimated that more than 33 million people have been impacted by the devastating floods that submerged a third of the country this summer. The Spanish tapas style restaurant will be open today for both lunch and dinner. It’s located at 1025 Aurora Avenue in Naperville.