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Father of Seven Optimistic About Study Group Process

Bannockburn resident voices support for changes at DHS and HPHS.

Tony Horwitz stumbled upon Bannockburn 23-years ago and has lived there ever since. “I feel lucky to have moved here because I didn’t know what I was getting,” the retired emergency room doctor said.

A top-notch public education was a high priority for Horwitz, who has seven children, some of whom are currently at Deerfield High School. “I feel like I hit the
jackpot,” the Wilmette native stated, which is why he decided to volunteer for one of District 113’s study groups.

For several months, more than 100 volunteers have been analyzing District 113’s
facility-technology plan for Deerfield and Highland Park high schools. Residents were divided into six teams comprised of a market research, teaching and learning, PE/athletics/pool, finance, building systems, and leadership group. Participants have been trying to figure out where and how the high schools can improve.

“There are pretty glaring obvious needs,” Horwitz said, who currently sits on the building systems study group. “The high schools are old. They’ve been exceptionally well maintained. They’re just old.”

Horwitz believes DHS and HPHS need to improve their infrastructure, functionality,
electrical and computer equipment to create an optimal learning environment for
students and an ideal teaching situation for staff.

“You can’t attract the best teachers when you can’t show them a quality working environment,” Horwitz said.

“I’m not looking for extravagance, I’m looking for value,” he explained and has been impressed by District 113’s commitment to getting community members involved. 

“I’m pleased with the process.” he commented. “This process sought to bring in new people, those with disparaged opinions.”

Horwitz feels now that everyone’s had the chance to voice their feelings it’s time to
“walk the walk” and make some upgrades.

“As far as I’m concerned, this is sort of the legacy you leave in your community,” he stated and wants to make sure District 113’s future is as bright as it has been
in the past.

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

David Greenberg January 04, 2012 at 11:26 PM
I'm sitting on one of the Study Groups as well, and I'm also finding the process to be impressive. Everyone from all sides agree there are needs, and are working together on a better plan. One thing I disagree with from the OP above is that the buildings have been "exceptionally well maintained". Many that I've met with feel the same way and have stated that IF new facilities are built, the total cost has to include the cost to perform regular maintenance and repair. Otherwise we'll be right back where we started in a few decades and it'll cost more. I'm not trying to armchair quarterback, but from what I've seen, there are opportunities for improving the maintenance process.
District 113 January 06, 2012 at 03:57 PM
David, thank you for being part of the study group process. Don't forget to fill out the District 113 Facility-Technology survey. Here is the link: https://bit.ly/thsd113. There are a lot of questions on there that we'd like your opinion on.

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