Attendance center model makes sense


I see there is some consideration for creating attendance centers for Rochelle elementary school children. Lincoln would house pre-k, kindergarten and first grade, Central would house second and third and Tilton would house fourth and fifth grade students.

This was brought up long ago when I was still teaching. I felt it would “even out” education in our schools. When I taught way back when it was not unusual for my fifth grade class to have 16 or 17 students while another had 24 and vice versa. Having all grade levels in one building would help eliminate that problem plus allow curriculum to be presented in a more unified manner. And there will be some cost savings in only operating three buildings while “mothballing” a fourth.

The issue of neighborhood schools will be brought up, but there are a lot of current students not in their neighborhood school. In fact, some neighborhoods don’t even have a school.

It may take some coordinating for parents when it comes to school events, especially if they have children in three different elementary buildings.

A decision won’t be made until April with implementation possible at the start of the school year next fall. 

I am sure you have an opinion. Issues like this could anger a community. People get upset because their children can’t attend the school they attended or the school right across the street from their house.

I ask that when you talk about this you remain open minded and most of all, considerate. You don’t like the idea? Give your reasons why, but please don’t call people names or be rude.  

If you have questions, Superintendent Jason Harper can be contacted at

And watch the paper for more information or meetings on this important topic.


A shout out to Rochelle Community Hospital staff for the excellent COVID vaccination event they recently held. My wife and I are in our 70s and have some health concerns, so when the 1B category became eligible, we signed up.

I don’t like shots. At one point in life, fainting was a possibility when I saw the needle.

But last Friday my wife and I and a few hundred other folks got our shots. It was painless, with the only discomfort a sore arm the next day.

Thanks also to the First Presbyterian Church for making the space available for the event.

Terry Dickow can be contacted at