Friday, December 6, 2013

Photos from the Legislator Visit

Thanks to all from both Kelvyn Park and New Trier who were able to give up a day of school and attend. It was a very eye-opening day and we received some very practical advice about how to proceed further in our pursuit of educational equity.

Created with Admarket's flickrSLiDR.

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Legislator Visit

On Thursday, December 5th, both the Kelvyn Park and New Trier students will converge in Gurnee, IL at the Lake County Federation of Teachers hall in order to meet with two Illinois legislators: Senator Melinda Bush (D), and Senator Pamela Althoff (R).

There we will discuss the legislators' efforts in the areas of school funding equity as well as the possibility of Illinois state income tax reform.

Below is our itinerary:

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Our Fundraising Organization

Thanks to all of the presentations by so many individuals. After MUCH discussion, here is the name of our chosen organization. More to follow...

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Presentation to Sophomore Advisers

Below is a slidedeck from today's Sophomore Inservice. Many parents, advisers, and students have been asking how best to sign up to volunteer at one of New Trier's social service agencies. This presentation details the steps needed to navigate the school webpage. The last slide asks advisers to please consider bringing their adviseries to Band-Aid (our annual fundraiser) in the Spring.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

An Inspiration-al Group

Thanks to Kaye Boling (sponsor) and the wonderful co-heads and volunteers of Inspiration Café for this fun photo!

"Greatest kids. Greatest club. Just wanted to say Thanks for the opportunity..."

Thursday, November 7, 2013

The Death of Public Education?

Thanks to Amara who led us in a spirited discussion of standardized testing and the recent protests from Chicago Public School students. She opened with this spoken-word video:

And then presented us with a discussion of 5 questions on the so-called "death of public education", based on this article from Progress Illinois.

Thanks, Amara!

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Metro Community Project Meeting #1

We had a perfect day -- cold but sunny and clear. Meeting with dozens of former and current Kelvyn Park students in Lincoln Square was a blast. Check out these select photos below then view the agenda for the day.

Created with flickr slideshow.

  • 10am-11am Welcome & Scavenger Hunt 
  • 11am-12:00pm Safe space: What are the barriers to honesty about school differences? What are we scared of? How can we be honest and curious? Creating guidelines for communication. (Juliet) Teacher modeling of direct conversation about educational disparity (Spiro & Sean) Student letters (NT and KP volunteers) 
  • 12:00pm-12:30pm Lunch Small groups: What’s happening in your school this year? What’s happening in your district? What is one thing you love about your school? What is one thing that is challenging about your school? 
  • 12:30-12:45 Report out & Teacher updates: CPS (Sean), New Trier (Spiro) 
  • 12:45-1:00 Energizer (Kelly, Gerardo, and Amy)
  • 1:00-1:50 Advocacy training Overview of conversations with legislators (Cynthia) Summer 2013 conversations with legislators: panelists share their memories of what happened and how legislators responded; panelists offer tips on how to engage legislators in discussion. (Spiro, Sean, Cynthia, Juliet, and NT/KP students) Role-play of legislative conversations (Spiro or Sean as the “legislator,” NT/KP students as students) 
  • 1:50-2:00 Reflection activity: one thing I got out of today was…(Juliet)

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Crop Walk featuring Charles Tony-Jones

We were thrilled to have Charles Tony-Jones visit us 9th period to talk to us about the North Shore Crop Walk on October 20th, 2013 in Evanston, IL. We have already raised hundreds of dollars from various low-denomination collections, but now it's time to secure sponsors for larger donations. Here's Mr. Jones speaking with the Social Service Board:

Monday, September 30, 2013

This Week in Social Service

We have a jam-packed schedule this week:
  1. Tuesday and Thursday: Metro Community Project Interviews with Dr. Taines
  2. Wednesday: Crop Walk guest speaker
  3. Bulletin Board to be completed by next Monday.
  4. Window painting this week.

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Board Bonding!

What exactly these young people were doing 9th period is beyond my understanding. Some kind of scavenger hunt? They seem to be peaceful, at least!

Click photo above to magnify!

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Social Service BBQ

Thanks to the SOIFER family for hosting our annual "pre-season" BBQ, featuring both returning Board members and our many new people. We withstood the withering sunshine and humidity until the Hannahs led the troops indoors for some "ice-breaking" activities. Cool times!

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

School Funding with Rep. Elaine Nekritz

Dr. Taines listens to Amber from KPHS
Today, we met with State Representative Elaine Nekritz (D) of the 57th District in her office in Glenview. Rep. Nekritz was kind enough to give us over an hour of her time, and she was impressed by the level of commitment our students exhibited in a Q & A session. Both Kelvyn Park and New Trier students attended. Some of what we discussed included:
  1. Education inequities 
  2. Illinois state budget problems
  3. Income tax reform
  4. Property tax reform
  5. An education task force (forming in the General Assembly)
We appreciate the advice that was offered by Rep. Nekritz, and also how the students emphasized the American promise of democracy in all spheres of life.

Misba (NTHS) asks some tough questions while Hannah, Hannah, and Rep. Nekritz listen
Mr. Kucharski asks his own questions

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Metro Celebration Agenda

From Dr. Taines:

Hi everybody, below is the agenda for this Saturday that Juliet and I worked on. Let us know if you have any revisions. Please spread the word to the students!

Thanks, Cynthia

Metro Community Preliminary Agenda
Saturday, June 15, 2013

El Nañdú Restaurant
2731 W. Fullerton Ave. Chicago, IL 60647

  • 10:30 am: Students meet at the vans at New Trier
  • 11:30 am: Welcome and teachers’ reflection (Tom & Sean)
  • 11:45 am: Empanadas! Salads! (everyone) 
  • 12:30 pm: Web of connections activity with reflection question: How has it impacted you to work with students from another community? (Juliet) 
  • 12:45 pm: Update on legislative visits (KP/NT students & Tom)
  • 1:00 pm: Talking, dessert (everyone)
  • 1:30 pm: Departure

Just for a frame of reference:

View Larger Map

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Parent-Board Dessert


On Wednesday, May 29th, from 7:30 pm to 9:00 pm, please plan on attending the Parent-Board Dessert! We will be gathering at the Altman house. Directions are here!

Please bring both (at least) 1 parent and 1 dessert! Ask Hannah if you can bring liquid refreshments.

Monday, May 20, 2013

What $300 Buys

Actually, here's (see photo) what $180 can do to make a difference for an organization's livelihood. Each co-head from Social Service Board can request up to $300 for any organization they sponsor. The money can be in the form of a check or supplies. For example, Amy and Sabrina spent less than two hundred dollars on a bounty of toys, games and other fun stuff for Rowe Elementary School.

If YOU want to make a request for YOUR specific organization, please consider the following:

  1. Certain organizations are not in need of additional funds. For example, ICRE receives money from the State of Illinois.
  2. Other organizations need funds for daily operational costs (like rent).
  3. Please make your request IN WRITING to Mr. Kucharski or Mr. Bolos. Consult with your sponsors regarding how to deliver the funds or the supplies.

Monday, May 13, 2013

Letter to a Legislator

On Saturday, May 11th, our Kelvyn Park Exchange group traveled again to the city to work with students and adults from the Logan Square neighborhood in order to learn how to craft letters to state legislators regarding inequities in Illinois school funding. Thank you to Rep. Daniel Biss (D) for inspiring this effort! Here is just one example of a letter written by a New Trier Student (click on the image to enlarge).

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

How to best help FICCS

Educate yourself about Kenya: pay special attention to the recent election and what's being covered in the news. Here is Mr Kucharski's take on the issues that underpin FICCS, the organization we are supporting this year.

Sunday, April 28, 2013

Photos from Band-Aid

What an incredible night of team-work and just plain HARD work. It was amazing to see what the Social Service Board could create and produce in such a short amount of time. Posters were EVERYWHERE in the school, Advisories were lobbied, social media was exploited, and the very best bands were vetted.

Thanks to EVERYONE who made a sign, hung a sign, distributed an ad-book, filled a shift, took a ticket, made a list, ran an errand, hung a streamer, anticipated a need, spoke into the microphone, dragged a table, popped corn, delivered a water bottle, and stuck around to clean up this huge show.

We really appreciate the work of our sponsors in chaperoning the event. Without them, we could not have put on this show. Special thanks to Mr. Kucharski, who carries the whole of Band-Aid in his head, and of course in his Post-It™ Notes.

Friday, April 26, 2013

Band-Aid is TONIGHT!

Remember why we do this: to support FICCS, this year's choice for fund-raising!

If you are one of our sponsors, please remember the following: 

  1. Come to the Hospitality Room (G212) at 6:00 pm on Friday, April 26th.
  2. Pizza will be served.
  3. Please wear your stylish Band-Aid T-shirt (which will appear in your mailbox that day)
  4. Your commitment to the event will last from 6 until 10 pm. Thank you so much!

Friday, April 12, 2013

Our New Co-Presidents!

L-R: Amelia & Annie (current), Hannah A. & Hannah S. (next year)

Congratulations to "The Hannahs" for their selection as the 2013-14 New Trier Social Service Board Co-Presidents. After reviewing their lengthy applications, conducting an interview with the entire Board, and then voting via secret ballot, the results were in!

Thanks to everyone who ran for office and who spoke on behalf of the candidates.

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Kelvyn Park Students Visit New Trier Homes

On Saturday, we welcomed students from Kelvyn Park High School into our homes for an early lunch. Thanks to the families who hosted! Afterward, we headed back to New Trier for a lengthy discussion of our next steps. Special thanks to State Senator Daniel Biss (D) for taking so much time to listen and then offer practical advice. Here was our planned agenda:
  • 10:00 - Meet at NTHS and board buses to family homes 
  • 10:30 - Lunch/brunch at family homes 
  • 12:00 - Pick up from family homes and return to NTHS 
  • 12:30 - Reflection on morning at family homes
  • 1:00 - Peace circle with students & local legislators on school funding, standardized testing, and lessons from the Metro Community Project
  • 2:00 - Senator Biss shares political action strategies for changing school funding and standardized testing
  • 2:30 - Student consensus process on metro community action issue
  • 2:55 - Closing reflection: word or phrase that describes today 
  • 3:00 - Departure 

Selected photos from the day:

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Welcome, Susan Grant!

Ms. Grant is a Class of 1972 graduate of New Trier High School, who as a young woman was heavily involved with Social Service. She came to our school to speak to the young women leaders of both Social Service Board and Girls' Club.

Today, Grant is Executive Vice President of CNN News Services, with oversight of the global news organization’s digital and affiliate businesses. Under Grant, CNN Digital has become the Internet’s leading news destination across multiple online and mobile platforms. She is a member of the board of Heifer International, a leading anti-hunger charity, and on the board of trustees for the Morehouse School of Medicine.

Susan Grant at the EPI Center in Winnetka

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Hands of Peace

Jim Matsuda of Hands of Peace
Two engaging speakers, student Jason Schwartz and adult sponsor Jim Tatsuda came to present about their non-political interfaith program, "Hands of Peace". This group brings together Palestinian, Israeli, and American teens for two weeks each summer.

The group is based in Glenview, Illinois. The 2013 Program is scheduled for July 5th through July 22nd for a cost of $900, but scholarships are available.

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Winter Carnival!

Thanks to everyone that was able to volunteer. The kids had a great time and we collected quite a few tickets!

Thursday, February 28, 2013

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Metro Campaign Issues

From Dr. Cynthia Taines:

Hi everybody, I wanted to share the results of the individual reflections that the students filled out last Saturday, on which metro campaign issue they wanted to pursue. (Note %s don't add to 100 because two students voted two issues as their first choice, and rounding.) 

  • School funding: first choice: 17 out of 23 students (74%), including 8 KP and 9 NT students. Two of these students voted Dreamers and student union, respectively, as a simultaneous first choice with school funding (see below). 
  • Standardized testing: first choice: 2 out of 23 students (9%), including 2 KP students.
  • Dreamers: first choice: 3 out of 23 students (13%), including 3 NT students. One of these students (NT) voted both Dreamers and school funding as 1st choice. 
  • Student union: first choice: 3 out of 23 students (13%), including 1 KP and 2 NT students. One of these students (NT) voted both student union and school funding as 1st choice. 
  • The runner-up, most popular 2nd choice issue, was Standardized Testing: 10 out of 23 students (43%), including 4 KP and 6 NT students.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Kelvyn Park Neighborhood Visit

On Saturday, February 16th, we had an awesome day talking about issues like:
  1. School Funding
  2. Standardized Testing
  3. "Dreamers" of the Dream Act
But perhaps the best part was THE FOOD we ate in those neighborhood homes. Thanks to the families in Logan Square who were generous with their time and so hospitable to us!

Friday, February 15, 2013

Selling Ads for Band-Aid's Ad Book

  1. Introduce yourself and note that you are speaking on behalf of New Trier's Social Service Board. Educate them about our organization.
  2. Explain the purpose of the Ad Book (unless they contributed last year)
    1. To advertise their business
    2. To raise funds for our Social Service experiences and FICCS (Foundation for...see below)
  3. Explain the different types of ads they can purchase (full page, 1/2 page, 1/4 page)
  4. Ask for direct payment (payable to New Trier Social Service) or payment to be mailed to Spiro Bolos, Social Service, New Trier High School, 385 Winnetka Ave, Winnetka, IL 60093.
  5. Collect the Ad. DON'T FORGET TO COLLECT THE AD.

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Kelvyn Park Part III

Our Lady of Grace. 2455 N. Hamlin Ave., Chicago
After two site visits to each high school, we will participate in a neighborhood tour. Our first stop is the Logan Square neighborhood where we will meet our counterparts, see the neighborhood, and then have lunch in family homes. Here are the details on Saturday, February 16th:
  • 9:15 am: Meet at New Trier High School (tennis courts)
  • 10:00 am: Arrive at Our Lady of Grace Parish
  • 10:30 am: Travel to local homes
  • 10:45 am: Lunch and Discussion at family homes (see questions below)
  • 12:00 pm: Return to Church / Icebreaker
  • 12:30 pm: Issue Presentations (Dreamers, school funding, standardized testing)
  • 2:30 pm: Individual Reflections (how should we prioritize issues?)
  • 2:35 pm: Winnetka Trip and Action Planning
  • 2:55 pm: Closing Reflection (a word or phrase that describes the day)

Lunchtime Conversations:
  • What are we eating? Where did you get the recipe? How does the food fit with your culture/heritage? 
  • Where are you from originally? What is your family’s history? 
  • What do you love about your neighborhood? What are the challenges of this neighborhood?
  • What are your goals for your children’s education? What do you want for your children?

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Monday, February 4, 2013

The Sandwich Factory Line

Inspiration Cafe needed a boatload of PB-n-J sandwiches for Inspiration Cafe and EVERYONE pitched in! Well, almost everyone... :)

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Band Aid Application

They're finally here. BAND-AID APPLICATIONS are due on Valentine's Day, February 14th, 2013. Click the Band-Aid for the form:

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Freshman Social Service Board Yearbook Picture!

Keep up the great work Frosh Boarders!
-Misba S :)

Freshman Board Gearing Up for Service Seminar!

On February 12th, Freshman Board will be teaching two seminars on getting involved with service at New Trier during the All-School Seminar Day! Here are some pictures of us hard at work preparing during our meeting this week:
Designing bookmarks to hand out!

Working on the class schedule.

Monday, January 14, 2013

Our Self-Audit

After taking the following survey, we polled the Social Service Board to generate the following the aggregate results. What do these results have to do with the idea of security? In what ways do these results demonstrate limits on how we engage with the rest of our world?

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Kelvyn Park Exchange Future Dates

Here are some possible dates. Please check your calendars for conflicts:

  1. Saturday, February 9th: Tour of Logan Square neighborhood, Lunch with families, Meeting to determine action steps
  2. Saturday, March 9th: Tour of North Shore neighborhoods, Lunch with families, Follow-up on action steps
  3. April: possible field trip?
Even if you haven't joined us in the past, please consider how you might participate on one of these upcoming days!