Diamond Edge November 2021

School board members continue to work to ensure that the opportunities offered by the district are equitable for all and that our students have the resources to achieve their dreams. Our BOE continues to support our students, the staff, and all residents in the D76 community with their dedicated public service and their public thoughtful education decisions. We would like to take this opportunity to recognize our D76 Board of Education-thank you for your dedication, support, service and leadership.

Congratulations to Dr. Erica Berger, Principal at West Oak Intermediate School. Dr. Berger was recently nominated and presented with a Diamond Award for her compassion and positive interactions with both staff and colleagues.

Teaching and Learning

In December, D76 students in 1st - 8th grades will take the Winter Star Benchmark Assessments in reading and math. Students take benchmark assessments three times a year: in the Fall, Winter and Spring in order to gauge student grade level proficiency and determine student growth. Once students complete the Winter Star Benchmark Assessment parents/guardians will receive the parent report which describes the student’s academic achievement and progress. If parents/guardians have any questions or need additional information regarding their student’s academic progress they should contact their student’s teacher or principal.


Our Food Service Committee met this month to sample a variety of meal options while providing authentic feedback regarding student meals at D76. Our food server provider Quest and Mr. Rogers, Director of Finance and Operations facilitated a food services taste testing event and obtained immediate feedback to enhance food choice selection in the near future.


2021 Tentative Tax Levy

At their November 16th Meeting, the Board of Education approved the 2021 Tentative Tax Levy. The proposed 2021 tax levy is $15,431,500 (exclusive of Bond and Interest). The increase is based on 1.4% for existing property (the 2020 CPI) and an additional 16% to capture new construction and remodeling. While D76 does not reasonably expect to get this much in property tax revenue, due to the Tax Cap Law in place, we must request a levy sufficient to capture all potential new property growth or risk losing this revenue. This process is referred to as “balloon levying.” The main reason for this is that the two main factors for calculating the tax rate, Equalized Assessed Valuation (EAV) and new property growth, are unknown at the time the levy is developed.

Many homeowners may have seen an increase in their 2020 tax bills. In theory, property tax increases are limited to a 5% or CPI increase, whichever is lower, from one tax year to the next. However, individual tax bills may increase more than 5% or the CPI due to one or more of the following reasons: A home addition was constructed, property was under assessed or reassessed, homeowner’s exemption changed, commercial and industrial property tax assessment appeals shift the tax burden to Residents.

As state and federal funding for education shrinks and property tax appeals are on the rise, D76 is aware of the extra burden individuals face. D76 makes every effort to responsibly use the dollars of our community taxpayers. As part of our D76 goals and action plan, programs are constantly evaluated for their effectiveness, staffing plans are reviewed annually and department budgets are carefully monitored and redeveloped from a “zero” base every year. The leadership team examines grant opportunities to help fund programs, equipment purchases and facility improvements.

Please see our website (www.dist76.org) for detailed budget and tax levy information.

Instructional Technology & Communications

In order to better serve our students, families and community District 76 is offering monthly parent education opportunities on various subjects to support parent resources, health, safety and child development. Within the D76 Parent University website we will continue to update upcoming events, recorded presentations and resources surrounding topics shared over the school year.

Upcoming Parent University Learning Sessions

  • December 8th: How to Make Doing Homework a Positive Experience
  • December 16th: How to Build Positive Behavior Supports at Home

STUDENT services

To continue to provide exceptional services to our students, D76 has implemented an after school program at all three schools. Students attend the after school program based on set criteria and who need additional support and resources. WOMS continues to offer a tutoring program for all students. Each school has tailored the program to meet students' academic needs. This is a great way to provide additional academic support outside of the regular school day.


  • Monday, December 6 - Late Start for Students
  • Wednesday, December 8 - Parent U: How to Make Doing Homework a Positive Experience; 6:30-7:30 p.m.
  • Tuesday, December 14 - Board of Education meeting 7:00 p.m.
  • Monday, December 20 - Friday, December 31 - Winter Break
  • Monday, January 3, 2022 - Classes Resume, Late Start for Students

Stay Connected #D76Diamonds

Diamond Lake District 76