District 212 administrators set graduation date

Tentative ceremony scheduled for Saturday, May 29

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ROCHELLE — District 212 administrators revealed Monday evening that the 2021 Rochelle Township High School graduation ceremony will be scheduled for Saturday, May 29. Superintendent Jason Harper said the district is still awaiting guidance from the Ogle County Health Department to determine what a potential graduation ceremony could look like.

District 212 board members approved the date during Monday’s meeting at RTHS. Harper said more details about the graduation ceremony will be determined sometime next month. Gov. J.B. Pritzker will reveal a new round of reopening guidance from the State of Illinois this week.

“We very much want to have graduation and we want to have the most transparent, high-participation graduation ceremony we can while safely following the guidelines,” Harper said. “We want to set our date the way we historically have. Our last day of scheduled classes, which are finals, is May 24 and we’ll be doing summer school from June 1 through July 14.”

Freshmen

Principal Chris Lewis reported that freshmen who are learning in person have started attending school five days a week as of this week. The district has implemented a hybrid model since the start of the school year, but administrators opted to revise the model and allow freshmen to attend school more frequently due to lower attendance and academic performance.

“We have a system in place for the freshmen and we want to see how it works,” Lewis said. “We want these kids back in the building because they haven’t had the formal RTHS experience. We haven’t held our freshman seminars and many of them don’t know where their lockers are.”

Vaccines

Harper said that district administrators are working with the OCHD to schedule additional COVID-19 vaccine appointments for teachers and staff members who didn’t participate in the first round of vaccinations in February and March. Harper said teachers and staff will have an opportunity to schedule an appointment with the OCHD sometime before the summer.

“Our employees will have a second option to get on the OCHD’s list,” Harper said. “It won’t be a one-day clinic like we’ve done before, but our employees will get a second bite at the vaccine apple... We wanted to give our employees, if they still want the vaccine, a chance to get it.”

Agenda

Board members approved extending the lease on an activity bus for two years at a cost of $8,950 per year and amending the tax abatement scheduled for the Lee-Ogle Enterprise Zone.