Dr. Owen, Superintendent of Urbana School District #116 and his Tiger Staff are looking to answer your questions about Urbana Schools, education in general, blogging as the superintendent, and the weather! Ask your question here! Answers will be posted below. If you have a questions that needs an individual response, please include your name and contact information (phone and/or email). Names and contact information will not be published with the questions on the web site.
A: Thank you for your question about the track in the McKinley Athletic Fields, at Urbana High School. We invite our neighbors to use the UHS track on a limited basis, however, we ask the public’s understanding that the facility is first and foremost, a place of learning for our students. We do not allow continuous public access to any of our learning environments, however, we understand our track is a unique space and asset to the community.
A: Thank you for your question. Students need time to play both inside and outside. Our principals use National Weather Service wind-chill guidelines to make decisions about which days are “outside” recess days. Principals and teachers are always on the lookout for kids who do not have appropriate cold weather gear. Cold air does not cause sickness. If your child has a medical condition that is triggered by cold air, please make sure you communicate that to the teacher and/or principal. With the weather finally getting to normal temperatures for this time of the year, it is a good time to remind our students to dress appropriately for weather and to be weather aware.
A: Thanks for your question! All Urbana schools (Early Childhood, all elementary, UMS, and UHS) begin school after winter break on Monday, January 4 at normal start times.
A: Thank you for your question! In USD 116, we believe in educating all students through inclusive classroom environments. We believe that heterogeneous grouping of students within a regular education setting provides opportunities for each student to contribute positively to the learning environment. Within the classroom setting, teachers are expected to differentiate instructional methods and content in order to help each child succeed. With regards to the education of highly talented and gifted students, this might include, but is not limited to, clustering students with similar abilities on a task- or content-specific basis, varying instructional strategies to match the specific learning styles of the students, curriculum compacting and/or extension and enrichment activities.
All USD 116 teachers are supported to strengthen skills in differentiated instruction through ongoing professional development, professional learning communities, and opportunities for collegial collaboration.