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York Athletic Director Named Illinois Athletic Director of the Year

by Thomas Makinney


York High School has a reputation not only for academic excellence but athletic excellence as well. And the Illinois Athletic Directors Association agrees, naming Athletic Director and Assistant Principal for Athletics Rob Wagner as its Class 3A and 4A Division 3 Athletic Director of the Year. He will receive the award and recognition at the IADA State Conference on Saturday, May 5 in East Peoria.

As athletic director, Wagner oversees the athletic programs at York, working closely with the coaches and overseeing financial, practical, and legal matters relating to the school’s teams as well as ensuring that athletes adhere to ethical standards.

Wagner has been at York High School for 15 years and is a familiar face to many, having served in a variety of roles during his tenure. He has been the athletic director for eight years. His other positions at the school include: assistant principal for finance and student activities (2011-2014), assistant principal for student services (2009-2011), and dean of students (2002-2005). He has served as assistant principal for athletics since 2014 and served a prior term as athletic director (2005-2009). He has also been a football and track coach at York.

Congratulations to Rob and to all the staff, coaches, and students at York who make awards and accolades like this possible! We’re proud of the amazing educational and athletic resources in our city.

To find out more, call us at (630) 441-5570 or reach out anytime through our website www.gmregroup.com.

Elmhurst Schools Ranked One of Best in Illinois

by Thomas Makinney

Elmhurst District 205 continues to rack up the accolades, ranking number six on a recent survey of top 100 districts in Illinois. 

The survey collected date from 9,577 school districts and looked at student performance (math and reading test scores) from the Center for Education Policy Analysis, dropout rates and school funding per the National Center for Education Statistics, and area poverty rates from the U.S. Census Bureau.

Chicago area suburbs consistently boast some of the best public school districts in the country, and this report cites our area schools’ consistent academic achievement, generous funding, superb athletic programs, and extensive extracurricular activities. 

The top ranked school district was Naperville District 203 followed by Morton District 709 and Wauconda District 118. Just ahead of Elmhurst was Barrington District 220 with Indian Prairie District 204 coming in number seven.

The survey was conducted by backgroundchecks.org, which helps consumers find public records and conduct background checks.

Elmhurst’s great schools are one of the reasons that living here is such a good investment. To learn more about the schools or the community, give us a call at (630) 441-5570 or visit us at www.gmregroup.com.

D205 ranked one of best in state

by Thomas Makinney

 

Achieving another top placement, Elmhurst District 205 was recently ranked sixth in Illinois by the National Council for Home Safety and Security.

The survey looked at school funding, student performance, dropout rate, and poverty rate. D205 sixth place ranking came from a total of 365 eligible districts in Illinois. Nationwide, D205 ranked in the top 3% with more than 9,500 districts surveyed, and D205 coming in at 283.

Schools with better funding tend to have smaller classes, longer school years, and better-paid teachers. Likewise, schools with strong student performance, as measured by math and reading test scores, tend to build upon that success, with students inspiring and influencing each other. Elmhurst schools have both factors plus an extremely low dropout and poverty rate.

Other schools coming in on top in Illinois Naperville CUSD203 and Morton Community CUSD709, both of which were ranked top in Illinois and the nation. Other school districts in Illinois’s top 10 include Wauconda, Dunlap, Barrington, Indian Prairie, Geneva, and St. Charles.

Elmhurst schools consistently rank at the top of all surveys. We’re proud of all that our schools have to offer and the amazing educators who make it all possible. To learn more about the schools or any part of life in Elmhurst, call us at (630) 441-5570 or email us through our website, www.gmregroup.com.

Elmhurst College Awards First-Generation Scholarships

by Thomas Makinney

Elmhurst College recently announced the recipients of its inaugural Elmhurst College American Dream Fellowship Competition, a scholarship contest that supports and celebrates first-generation college students.

The competition was launched last year as part of the college’s commitment to helping its students achieve the American dream. It was open to all first-generation college students who had been admitted to Elmhurst College for the fall of 2018. Applicants were asked to submit a video on the topic, “As a first-generation student, what would graduating from college mean to you and your family?” 

Scholarship applications came in not only from the Chicago area but also from across the country. On Feb. 19, winners were announced at a ceremony in Hammerschmidt Memorial Chapel on campus with more than 500 people, including many family members, in attendance.

Lillian Rizo-Dubois, a Prairie Ridge High School senior from Crystal Lake, received first place. She plans to major in French with the goal of teaching high school. She received a four-year, full-tuition scholarship to the college. Several other winners received awards ranging from four years’ room and board to a stipend covering the cost of books and materials.

In addition to the video, contestants and their families came to campus for in-person interviews and to hear from current first-generation college students, campus leaders, and alumni, before attending the ceremony later that afternoon.

Here at Gracik-Makinney, we congratulate not only the winners of the scholarships but also the college on its unwavering commitment to providing a quality, inclusive education for everyone.

For more information about life in Elmhurst, call us at (630) 441-5570 or visit our website, www.gmregroup.com.


Elmhurst Library gets national five-star ranking

by Thomas Makinney


The Elmhurst Library, with its deep selection of books and media, tall windows overlooking the park, amazing Makery makerspace, cozy fireplace, and coffee shop, has long been one of the jewels of Elmhurst. And the experts agree. The library just received a five-star rating in Library Journal’s annual national ranking of public libraries, one of only six libraries in Illinois to receive that rating.

More than 7,400 libraries across the country were rated, with only 259 of those receiving any star designation. This is the tenth year that LJ has rated libraries, which are measured in categories based on per capita measures of service output and budgets.  Elmhurst Public Library has received three- and four-star ratings in the past, but this is the first five-star review.

Ratings are based on data reported to the government—visits, checkouts, program attendance, digital materials, and public computer use per capita.

Elmhurst is in the top 10 public libraries in the country with a $5-9.9M budget (and the first in Illinois) with one of the highest visits and checkouts per capita.

The LJ article pointed out that the best libraries have welcoming facilities with well-targeted programs and collections with range and depth as well as strong technology features. That description fits EPL to a tee.

You can read the entire Library Journal article here.

Congratulations to the Elmhurst Public Library! We’re thrilled that such a beautiful and professional facility is getting the national recognition it deserves. If you’re interested in learning more about the library or any part of living in Elmhurst, call us at (630) 441-5570 or visit our website, www.gmregroup.com.


30 York musicians and singers perform in ILMEA All-District band

by Thomas Makinney

Congratulations to the 30 York High School students who were selected to perform in the Illinois Music Educators Association (ILMEA) All-District band, chorus, orchestra, and jazz band! More than 3,000 students auditioned from over 75 schools throughout northeastern Illinois.

The Senior Festival was held Nov. 18 at Elmhurst College. There was also a Junior/Senior Jazz Festival on Nov. 11 at Thornton Fractional South High School in Lansing.

The following York students were selected for the IMEA All-District I:

Nick Agliata, bassoon; Katharine Bartosz, soprano; Michael Bindeman, bass; Olivia Braun, trombone; Madds Buckley, alto; Grace Clarke, alto sax; Matt Dardick, alto sax; Emily Dow, cello; Kristen Drost, soprano; Audrey Fatheree, French horn; Danielle Fite, alto; Lauren Hund, flute; Rylan Johnsen, viola; Carina Kanzler, soprano; Helen Koczur, soprano; Erin Lee, soprano; Wilke Macariola, tenor; Bailey Maguire, alto; Lauren Makinney, double bass; Abigail Marianetti, cello; David Menichini, trumpet; Jackie Meyer, alto; Chuck Miller, tenor sax, concert band and jazz ensemble; Siena Olson, French horn; Nicole Polizzi, soprano; Sebastian Rohn, tenor; Erin Stone, alto; Cece Stumpf, trumpet; Tessa Vermeulen, flute; and Nick Villarreal, clarinet.

Other Elmhurst students who performed on Nov. 18 were Timothy Christian students Dana McAdam, soprano 2; and Jack Vandermolen, clarinet.

Gracik-Makinney would like to congratulate all the young musicians! We’re proud of the strong music programs that are supported by all of the Elmhurst schools. A vibrant arts community is one of the best parts of our town. To learn more, call us at (630) 441-5570 or visit our website, www.gmregroup.com.

 

Elmhurst District 205 ranked one of best in state

by Thomas Makinney


Elmhurst Unified School District 205 was recently ranked one of the top ten best school districts in Illinois. Coming in at number eight, the district received straight As for academics, teachers, clubs and activities, college prep, and health and safety.
 
The rankings were based on analysis of statistics from the U.S. Department of Education and parent/student reviews. Schools were rated and given grades in academics, teachers, culture and diversity, health and safety, resources and facilities, clubs and activities, and sports. Information was also analyzed from parent/student surveys.
 
Just ahead of District 205, Hinsdale Township District 86 came in at number seven, and Niles Township District 219 came in after us at number nine.
 
In high school rankings, York High School received an A+ and was ranked #32 out of 659 high schools in Illinois, private and public.
 
The top ten school districts in Illinois listed in order are: New Trier Township High School District 203, Community High School District 128 (Vernon Hills), Naperville Community Unit School District 203, Barrington Community Unit School District 220, Glenbrook Schools District 225, Indian Prairie Community Unit School District 204 (Aurora), Hinsdale Township High School District 86, Elmhurst School District 205, Niles Township Community High School District 219, and Community Unit School District 200 (Wheaton).
 
Information was compiled by Niche.com, a website that analyzes dozens of public data sets and millions of reviews to produce comprehensive rankings, report cards, and profiles for K-12 schools, colleges, and places to live. To learn more about the rankings of school districts, visit  https://www.niche.com/k12/search/best-school-districts.
 
Strong schools are one of the main considerations that people take into account when buying a home, and we’re proud that Elmhurst schools have consistently ranked among the best. To find out more about our schools and our city, call us at (630) 441-5570 or visit us at www.gmregroup.com.

Elmhurst College Ranked One of the Top Online Colleges in Illinois

by Thomas Makinney

Elmhurst College is getting used to seeing its name at the top of national rankings. A recent survey by OnlineColleges.com ranked Elmhurst College among the top of colleges and universities in Illinois that offer online programs.

Elmhurst College received particularly high scores for its student graduation and retention rates, placing it in the top 15 statewide. Elmhurst ranked 23rd out of the 98 Illinois institutions surveyed.

Elmhurst offers graduate degrees, graduate certificate programs, undergraduate certificate programs, and degree completion programs.

According to U.S. News, the percentage of students enrolling in online programs continues to rise and is beginning to skew younger. Once the realm of for-profit schools, many accredited colleges and universities are beginning to offer online degrees for students seeking a less traditional approach.

U.S. News also reports that although online students are not bound to a geographic area, most students tend to enroll in local institutions with strong reputations.

OnlineCollege.com ranked more than 2, 500 accredited colleges and universities on factors including affordability, student services, and the availability of online programs. It is an independent resource that provides information about online colleges and degree programs and can help students find the right college and program.

We’re proud to have such a prestigious college right in the middle of our town. For more information on what makes Elmhurst a great place to live, call us at (630) 441-5570 or visit our website, www.gmregroup.com.  

Elmhurst pools garner top honors

by Thomas Makinney

Elmhurst residents aren’t the only ones impressed by East End and Smalley pools. Besides offering a variety of aquatic activities—from slides and diving boards to water features and lap lanes—our lifeguards and facilities are getting national recognition.

Starfish Aquatics Institute, one of the premier lifeguard, swim instructor and pool operator certifying agencies in the United States, recently gave EPD lifeguards a 5-star rating, its highest honor.

Unidentified auditors, using methods similar to “mystery shoppers”, assessed lifeguards during June. Lifeguards were evaluated on scanning, attentiveness, and professionalism.

Auditors also conducted skill scenarios to assess how staff responded to drowning and emergency situations. And supervisory staff was evaluated for leadership and safety practices.

Altogether, more than 50 performance metrics were assessed, and EPD facilities not only met exceeded critical standards in each area.

The rating is impressive not only because it is difficult to achieve, but also because EPD pools have received the honor every year for more than five years.

Teamwork and communication were two areas where EPD lifeguards really stood out. Guards were recognized for the safety knowledge and ability to quickly respond to situations.

So the next time you’re at one of the pools, relax. You’re in good hands.

For more information about Elmhurst’s stellar park district and other benefits of our city, call us at (630) 441-5570 or visit us at www.gmregroup.com

York HS Reaches Pinnacle of AP Success

by Thomas Makinney

 
York High School and District 205 received excellent news from the College Board’s Advanced Placement program.
 
District 205 was recently named to the College Board’s 7th annual AP District Honor Roll. In 2017, only 433 school districts in the U.S. and Canada achieved the distinction and only 21 in Illinois.
 
This is the fourth time D205 has made the list (also in 2011, 2012, 2013, and 2016).
 
Additionally 33 York High School students and recent graduates earned National AP Scholar status based on exceptional achievement in last May’s AP Exams. An additional 163 were honored as an AP Scholar with Distinction, while another 52 were honored as an AP Scholar with Honors. In addition, 112 were named AP Scholars. A total of 327 Scholars earned an average score of 4.09 (out of a possible 5.0) on a total of 1,928 exams.

Those qualifying for the National AP Scholar award earned an average score of 4 or higher on all AP Exams taken and scores of 4 or higher on 8 or more of these exams.
 
In order to make the College Board’s AP District Honor Roll, districts must both increase access to AP courses for a broader number of students while also maintaining or improving the rate at which AP students earn scores of 3 or higher on an AP exam.
 
York saw an increase in students from 727 in 2014 to 832 in 2016.
 
Advanced Placement courses give high school students the opportunity to study at the college level and earn college credit while still in high school. More than 3,800 colleges and universities worldwide recognize AP scores, and a score of 3 or higher earns students college credit or advanced standing or both.
 
Additionally, AP courses signal to college admission officers that students have attempted a rigorous curriculum, and thus are capable of managing a heavy college workload as well.
 
District 205 and York High School regularly receive high marks and national recognition, and people repeatedly cite our excellent schools as a reason why they chose to move to Elmhurst. To learn more about our school system and the many benefits of living here, call us at (630) 441-5570 or visit www.gmregroup.com.
 

Displaying blog entries 1-10 of 29

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