Thank you to the many volunteers, teachers and students for making Project Citizen so successful for our students. Read more about the Elm Place student participants below. Congratulations to all involved.
Elm Place students recognized by Highland Park city council
Group studied school safety
By John P. Huston, Chicago Tribune reporter
A group of seventh grade students from Elm Place School were recognized by the Highland Park City Council for a recent project that studied school safety.
Project Citizen is “nationally sponsored program in which students learn about public policy and civic education. They identify a problem in the community, research it, develop a public policy and an action plan to promote it,” said Mark Nolan Hill, coordinator of the program and a member of the city’s Natural Resources Commission.
“This program continues to be most successful year after year,” Hill told the City Council during a recent meeting. “Each year I have seen these students perform at an exemplary level.”
Past groups have studied immigration, ravine erosion, Lake Michigan pollution and bullying, but this year’s seventh graders chose school safety — and several of those who spoke before the council mentioned the December shootings at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn.
Besides identifying safety as a relevant issue, the group also provided several suggestions to make North Shore School District 112 buildings more secure. A group of 10 girls made an abbreviated presentation of their research to the City Council.
“One of the solutions that we believe would be helpful is the creation of ID cards for each student,” said Jocelyn Kahn, one of the students. “Another solution we believe would be valuable is for the school board to form a committee comprised of students, parents and administrators to evaluate current policies.”
After presenting the proclamation, Mayor Nancy Rotering applauded the group’s efforts.
“If you don’t feel like you are safe in school it’s hard to do what you’re there for which is to learn, so I think you’ve brought some great suggestions and I’m sure the school board is listening to you,” Rotering said.