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District 7, Local Libraries Provide Access to Each Student

For the past several months, District #7 has been working closely with the Edwardsville Public Library and other libraries in the District #7 footprint to provide every student enrolled in District #7 access to a public library card. That program is now active.   

“This partnership between District #7 and the public libraries serving the school district allows us to provide access to all students,” said Superintendent Dr. Patrick Shelton. “This is possible due to the cooperation of the local public libraries and an Intergovernmental Agreement between District #7 and the Edwardsville Public Library to provide access to students living outside of a library taxing area.” 

Student’s cards will be registered at one of the following libraries based on their home address: Edwardsville Public Library, Glen Carbon Centennial Library, Worden Public Library, Wood River Public Library, Bethalto Public Library District, Maryville Community Library and Roxana Public Library. These libraries are all part of the Illinois Heartland Library System (IHLS) and share resources. As a result, students will be able to check out physical books from any of the libraries listed above. Electronic resources, including e-books/audiobooks are not shared, so access to databases and e-reading apps will vary based on the library the student is registered at.  

“We are excited to be able to provide District #7 students with access to additional resources which will enhance their education.” 

There will be no physical cards issued by the library, instead each student’s school ID will be their library card. Information on how to use the school ID as a library card was sent to families in a district communication.  

 

 

Friday Feature: Molly Deist, Goshen Reading Specialist

Molly Deist taught kindergarten and first grade for several years before deciding that her true passion was literacy.   

“I remember watching students have those moments when reading clicked and I wanted to be able to spend my time focusing on helping student achieve those moments.” 

Deist pursued her literacy specialist degree at SIUE and was a reading specialist in Missouri for seven years before deciding she wanted to serve the community where she lived.  

“I also knew that District 7 had many amazing educators who I could learn from and many opportunities to grow professionally.” 

Deist is in her sixth year as a reading specialist at Goshen but has also helped at Nelson and Glen Carbon elementary schools.  

One of the reasons she decided to move from the classroom environment to a reading specialist role was that it allowed her to concentrate on one area that impacts all areas.  

“Being a strong reader is the foundation for academic success and I love watching students apply the skills they’ve learned in reading club to all academic areas.” 

Deist does not come from a long line of educators but has always loved working with children.  

“I began working as an early childhood education major because I loved the opportunity to see students experience school for the first time. 

Once she was able to get into the classroom through internships in college, Deist knew she had found the place where she belonged.  

“The growth that you can see from early childhood even through just second grade is astounding. Being part of that growth is what makes my job so rewarding.” 

Deist is thrilled to work for a district that embraces the science of reading as well as getting to work with some of the district’s youngest learners.

I love being able to look at my students as a whole and have discussions about how we can best meet their needs. It is imperative that we provide our youngest students with a strong phonemic awareness and phonics foundation and the reading club is a great place to help lay that foundation. K-2 students are excited to learn every day and I feel so fortunate to be a small part of that love of learning. It is a wonderful feeling to be able to say that you truly love your job.” 

 

Friday Feature: Lindsey Tallerico, GCE Speech Language Pathologist

by Mary Ann Mitchell, Public Relations and Communications Coordinator

From the age of 16, Lindsey Tallerico knew she wanted to be a speech language pathologist.  

“I have had many SLPs in my life, including a cousin and a mother-in-law, who all spoke highly of the field and encouraged me through my education. To me, the field of speech language pathology is the perfect mix of science and linguistics.”  

Tallerico is in her fourth year at Glen Carbon Elementary. It’s the second stint at Glen Carbon for the D7 alumnae, who was born and raised in Edwardsville. She is in her 19th year in District 7, having also worked at Woodland, Worden, Hamel, Columbus, Nelson, Leclaire, Goshen, and Lincoln.   

While she could have gone the private practice route, it’s the collaborative aspect of the school setting that Tallerico enjoys.  

“I’ve had the opportunity to work with great interdisciplinary teams over the years and learned so much from colleagues.” 

She also knows that communication impacts children across educational environments and wants to help those students.  

“I love to target communication skills that incorporate classroom concepts or literacy skills.”  

The biggest reward for Tallerico is simply helping a student communicate and advocate for their wants and needs.  

“Whether it’s increasing their speech intelligibility, helping them socialize with peers, or improving their ability to answer questions in their classroom, I’m making a positive impact on their lives. And I love to hear from parents and teachers that one of my students will not stop talking!” 

Throughout her career, Tallerico has worked with students of all ages, but especially enjoys working with K-2 students.  

“I love their enthusiasm and energy. We sing songs, we dance, we laugh, all while improving communication skills!” 

  

  

 

 

District 7 Announces Partnership With First Community Credit Union

Edwardsville Community Unit School District #7 has announced a corporate partnership with First Community Credit Union that will run through July 2027.   

As part of its partnership, First Community Credit Union will offer custom Edwardsville High School debit cards, available at both local branches, located in the Glen Carbon Walmart and on 157. FCCU will also have advertising on football and basketball scoreboards.  

“We are excited to partner with First Community Credit Union,” said District 7 Superintendent Dr. Patrick Shelton. “First Community has a history of being involved in its local communities and we are grateful for their support of our students.”  

First Community was originally founded nearly 90 years ago as the Monsanto Credit Union. Today some of the grandkids of those former Monsanto employees attend Edwardsville High School. This partnership with the district is the best way I can think of to show our support of the school and the community from generation to generation,” said Glenn D. Barks, First Community Credit Union President & CEO.  

About First Community:
First Community Credit Union has been operating for nearly 90 years and serves over 375,000 members. First Community is in the top 100 credit unions in the nation. Its mission is to provide quality products and affordable financial services. It serves all persons living and working in the Illinois counties of Madison, Monroe, and St. Clair and the Missouri communities of St. Louis City, St. Louis County, Franklin County, Jefferson County, St. Charles County, and Warren County. 

Pontious Selected as one of Emerson’s 2022 Excellence in Teaching Award Recipients

Edwardsville High School English teacher Nickie Pontious has been selected as one of Emerson’s 2022 Excellence in Teaching Award recipients.  

She is among more than 80 teachers from across the St. Louis metropolitan area who are being recognized this year through the program as examples of truly outstanding educational excellence. 

“I am truly honored to receive this recognition,” Pontious said. “There are so many teachers deserving of recognition for the work they do every single day, so I am especially grateful for this opportunity.” 

The Emerson Excellence in Teaching Awards, now in its 33rd year, is one of the St. Louis region’s most recognized teacher recognition programs. Emerson proudly sponsors this program as a way of helping the St. Louis community express their collective admiration and gratitude for their dedication to teaching the area’s students. 

“We are extremely proud of Nickie for being named a recipient of the Emerson’s Excellence in Teaching Award,” said EHS principal Dr. Steve Stuart. “She has dedicated her time to her students through the outstanding work she does in the classroom and her extracurricular activities, and in supporting her peers through her leadership role on our PLC (professional learning communities) Team.”  

Superintendent Dr. Patrick Shelton echoes Stuart’s sentiments. 

“Nickie exemplifies what it means to be an excellent educator and is truly deserving of this honor. Her inspiring enthusiasm and positivity for her students is unmatched and we are extremely grateful to have Nickie in District 7.” 

Pontious has spent all 12 years of her teaching career at EHS.  

“Teaching is a career that is ever-changing, hustling and bustling, switching gears every moment in every school day to accommodate the needs of individual students as a collective group, but it is one of the most rewarding accomplishments of my life,” said Pontious. “My students drive my passion for teaching. I am thankful to get to know each and every one of them and be their personal cheerleader as they grow and evolve into lifelong learners.”    

In addition to her teaching position, Pontious is the sponsor of the Interact Club, the Tiger Podcast and routinely facilitates professional development for other teachers. She was one of three teachers selected to lead the guiding coalition to implement PLCs for District #7. 

In recognition of her honor, Pontious received an engraved crystal apple from Tiffany & Co., along with other additional tokens of appreciation from Emerson. She was also recognized at the November 28, 2022, District #7 Board of Education meeting. 

Special Informational Meeting at Midway Moved to Nov. 30

Due to unforseen circumstances, the special informational meeting scheduled for Monday, November 21 at Midway has been postponed. That meeting will now take place on Wednesday, November 30 at 6 p.m. We apologize for any inconvenience, but look forward to sharing additional information directly related to Midway and its critical building infrastructure needs on November 30. 

Friday Feature: Wendy Sanders, FLS Program Assistant

Wendy Sanders has always had a passion and gift for working with children.   

“I have always enjoyed working with kids and caring for others.” 

As an FLS program assistant, she gets to do that daily.  

After relocating back to the area from the east coast where her husband’s job moved them, she needed to go back to work. After high school, she worked at Memorial Hospital in Belleville in various roles, including unit secretary, and also helped with the children’s Sunday school at her church.  

“I knew I wanted to work with children and my sister, who also works for D7, suggested that I apply as a playground monitor. I was hired and began at Woodland Elementary in 2013.” 

Sanders did that for a year and then was a substitute assistant in Mr. Fark’s FLS classroom. When the opportunity to join as a FLS program assistant opened, she took it and has been working in his classroom ever since.  

“He’s the best teacher to work with! I absolutely love working with Mr. Fark and the children. It brings me such joy to be able to help shape their lives.” 

After years at Woodland Elementary, Sanders followed Fark to Cassens this year.  

“I continue to work for the district because my heart is with all the children and the great staff members, both at Woodland and Cassens, that have mentored me and became my friends. There are so many rewarding things about my job and working for D7, but the most rewarding is seeing the children learn and excel in their life.” 

District #7 School Calendar Survey

District #7 is seeking input into the development of the 2023-24 school calendar, as well as the structure of future calendars.   

Input and feedback received from this school calendar survey will be shared with the District Leadership Team, Calendar Committee, and the Board of Education, and will be used to develop drafts of the 2023-24 school calendar. The Board of Education approves the school calendar each year, typically no later than the January regular board meeting.  

When completing this survey, please remember that each school year must contain 174 instructional days, two (2) days for parent teacher conferences, and four (4) teacher institute days. In addition, there are holidays which must be taken as required by Illinois School Code.  

You can access the survey here: https://forms.office.com/r/yiJVWME1aC. It will remain open through Tuesday, November 22, 2022.  

2022-23 Winter Weather Plan

November 13, 2022   

Dear District #7 families,  

As we saw this weekend, winter is fast approaching, and along with it comes the potential for weather and travel concerns. If inclement weather prompts District #7 to cancel school, alter bus schedules, or hold an e-Learning day, we will notify parents and staff as soon as possible using a variety of communication tools. Please note, extreme weather can be unpredictable, but the decision to cancel school or call for an e-Learning day will be made by 5 a.m., if possible, on days when inclement weather occurs or is pending. District #7 will only send a message if school is cancelled, bus routes are altered, or an e-Learning day is issued. Otherwise, the day will proceed as usual. Kid Zone will also be closed if there is an inclement weather day. More information will be sent to enrolled families of their plan if weather is a factor. 

While District #7 can use up to five e-Learning days in lieu of snow days when weather conditions make it dangerous to get students to school, we will not have an e-Learning day until our K-2 students have devices, which is scheduled to occur in January. Please remember that we will not be taking away all snow days, we will just have the flexibility to utilize e-learning and emergency days, depending on the winter conditions.  

When the decision is made to cancel school or hold an e-Learning day due to inclement weather, the District will send an email, a text message, and a recorded message via phone to all families via our message broadcast system, SchoolMessenger.  

The system will utilize contact information that the District currently has on file in SchoolMessenger, which interfaces with the District’s student information system. Contact information was provided at registration by parents/guardians. Revised or updated contact information should be provided to your child’s school. All information and contact numbers are secure and confidential and are used only for the purposes described above. If you have not opted-in for text messages and would like to do, please see the Text Opt-in attachment.  

 If you have any questions about this system or any part of the SchoolMessenger notification process, please contact Bill Miener, Director of Information Systems & Service, at 655-6018, or by email at bmiener@ecusd7.org. 

District #7 will post school closure information at www.ecusd7.org and on our social media channels, including Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. The District also notifies local television stations (KMOV-TV CHANNEL 4 NEWS; KSDK-TV CHANNEL 5 NEWS; FOX 2 NEWS) as well as radio station KMOX (AM-1120).  

With Tiger Pride,  
Patrick Shelton, Ed.D.
Superintendent