University of Chicago Medicine Breast Cancer June 2022
SRP-IMAGE-Logo

Safety concerns spark idea of turning Central Junior High into a middle school

The decision to transform Central Junior High School in Evergreen Park into a middle school began with some security concerns.
“It’s kind of an interesting story,” School District 124 Supt. Robert Machak said.
Machak and Evergreen Park police conducted security audits at each of the district’s five schools shortly after he arrived in the district last year.
“They walked through every building with me,” Machak said.
During a tour of Central Junior High, Machak noticed that anyone who entered the doors of the adjacent administrative office could get into the school without being noticed, he said.
He talked to the school board about securing the entrance, which led to a proposal to swap the administrative offices and junior high library.
The plan carried a $600,000 price tag, which led school board members to consider other proposals, including transforming the junior high into a middle school.
The idea has been floated before, but the district never followed through on bringing sixth graders to the junior high, 9400 S. Sawyer Ave., Machak said.
“The plan sort of evolved,” he said. “Maybe now was the time to revisit bringing the sixth grade over.”
The board’s facilities committee and met several times with the district’s architect to discuss specifics.
Accommodating sixth graders means adding 10 to 12 classrooms to the school, which necessitated moving the administrative offices out of the junior high, Machak said.
The district considered renting office space, but couldn’t find anything that met its needs. It also considered purchasing and renovating a residential property.
“We looked at everything under the sun,” Machak said.
Ultimately, the district decided to buy Brady-Gill Funeral Home, 2929 W 87th St.
The district will use $1 million in reserves and float a $7.5 million bond to pay for the funeral home and fund the renovation of the junior high, Machak said.
District officials decided against using more of its reserves in case funds were needed for an emergency, said Machak, who added that the bonds will not lead to a property tax increase for district residents
The first group of sixth graders will attend Central in the 2015-16 school year.
The school will be renovated after the district offices are relocated next year, Machak said.
Machak, a middle school principal for 13 years, said the concept will bring many advantages to the district.
He said a common complaint about the junior high model is that the timeline for students is too fast. They are either arriving in 7th grade or getting ready to graduate the following year. The middle school, on the other hand, allows students to grow and mature over a three-year period.
Additionally, it gives eighth graders the chance to serve as mentors to the sixth grade class, thereby developing leadership skills.
“I also think there is a strong academic benefit,” Machak said.
Also, removing sixth grade from the elementary schools will free up much needed space in those buildings, he said.

Local News

reichman jewelers robbed

Oak Lawn jewelry store employee shot during robbery

By Bob Bong An employee at Reichman Jewelers in Oak Lawn was shot and critically wounded during a robbery Friday afternoon. Oak Lawn police said they responded to an armed robbery at 2 p.m. at the store at 4439 W. 95th St., across the street from Advocate Christ Medical Center. Police said they found one…

happy fourth of july - Copy

Evergreen Park, Summit fireworks kick off fun-filled Fourth of July weekend

By Bob Bong Evergreen Park’s parade and fireworks along with a party in the park and fireworks in Summit and the inaugural four-day Lyons Fest will start off what promises to be a fun-filled and noisy Fourth of July weekend in the area. Evergreen Park Evergreen Park native and Olympic silver medalist, Abbey Murphy, will…

Summit water tower

Summit names acting police chief, public works director

By Carol McGowan Summit Police Lt. Mel Ortiz has been named acting police chief to replace John Kosmowski and Jerry Rosales was appointed interim public works director to replace Bill Mundy. Both Kosmowski and Mundy are on unpaid leave after having been indicted by a federal grand jury. The appointments were announced earlier this month.…

Tatumn Milazzo was named one of the top players in the NWSL in June. Photo by Jeff Vorva

Pro Soccer Report: Milazzo, Pugh named to NWSL’s Best XI for June

  By Jeff Vorva Staff Writer She’s not just the Chicago area’s secret anymore. The progress of Orland Park native Tatumn Milazzo as a professional soccer player is not catching only Chicago’s attention, but that of the NWSL. The second-year Chicago Red Stars defender opened her career seeing a lot of bench time early in…

Back of the Yards graduate Roxy Herrera receives a hug after winning an award for being one of the top goalies in the country on Thursday. Photo by Jeff Vorva

Clean Sheet: Back of the Yards grad Roxy Herrera honored as one of top high school goalies in U.S.

Jeff Vorva Staff writer Roxy Herrera thinks she was 9 or 10 years old when she was the new kid on the Pumas soccer team in Gage Park. Thus, she was immediately used as a goalie for the first time in her life. “They told me the new player plays in goal,” Herrera said. “So,…

Democrat Jonathan Jackson (standing, at left) helps his famous father, the Rev. Jesse L. Jackson Sr. (seated), vote on June 28. --Supplied photo

Jackson, Carlson headed for left-right clash in 1st

Danny Davis triumphs; will be unopposed this fall By Tim Hadac While the Sean Casten-Marie Newman clash of incumbents appeared to draw the most attention of all congressional races on the Southwest Side, two other races made news on June 28. In the battle to succeed retiring U.S. Rep. Bobby L. Rush (D-1st), Jonathan Jackson…

Kathy Headley

Farewell and thanks to Nathan, Connor and David

By Kathy Headley Your correspondent in Chicago Lawn and Marquette Manor 6610 S. Francisco • (773) 776-7778 As June ends, we at St. Rita of Casica Parish and St. Clare of Montefalco Shrine sadly say goodbye to Nathan Fernandes, Connor Fitzmaurice and David Marshall. The three are pre-novices discerning a vocation to the priesthood in…

Peggy Zabicki

Grateful for the freedoms we have

By Peggy Zabicki Your correspondent in West Lawn 3633 W. 60th Place • (773) 504-9327 Happy Birthday USA! I am so grateful for the freedom we have in our wonderful country. I hope those who choose to celebrate our freedom by lighting illegal fireworks will be arrested by our police, who I hope will have the…

Laura Ortega

Graduations are so bittersweet

By Laura Ortega Your correspondent in Greater Ashburn 4214 W. 82nd Place • (773) 627-6679 Congratulations to the Class of 2022! It’s bittersweet to see everyone graduate, especially when you can remember those same individuals graduating kindergarten not so long ago. A huge congratulations to my daughter, Liliana, who graduated eighth grade. I look forward…

Mary Stanek

Peck playlot taking shape

By Mary Stanek Your correspondent in Archer Heights and West Elsdon 3808 W. 57th Place • (773) 284-7394 “It’s the things we play with and the people who help us play that makes a great difference in our lives” – Fred Rogers. Who remembers the play lots of the 60s and 70s? Can you recall…

Neighbors

DVN JCs Restoration House Ad
reichman jewelers robbed

Oak Lawn jewelry store employee shot during robbery

By Bob Bong An employee at Reichman Jewelers in Oak Lawn was shot and critically wounded during a robbery Friday afternoon. Oak Lawn police said they responded to an armed robbery at 2 p.m. at the store at 4439 W. 95th St., across the street from Advocate Christ Medical Center. Police said they found one…

happy fourth of july - Copy

Evergreen Park, Summit fireworks kick off fun-filled Fourth of July weekend

By Bob Bong Evergreen Park’s parade and fireworks along with a party in the park and fireworks in Summit and the inaugural four-day Lyons Fest will start off what promises to be a fun-filled and noisy Fourth of July weekend in the area. Evergreen Park Evergreen Park native and Olympic silver medalist, Abbey Murphy, will…

Summit water tower

Summit names acting police chief, public works director

By Carol McGowan Summit Police Lt. Mel Ortiz has been named acting police chief to replace John Kosmowski and Jerry Rosales was appointed interim public works director to replace Bill Mundy. Both Kosmowski and Mundy are on unpaid leave after having been indicted by a federal grand jury. The appointments were announced earlier this month.…

Tatumn Milazzo was named one of the top players in the NWSL in June. Photo by Jeff Vorva

Pro Soccer Report: Milazzo, Pugh named to NWSL’s Best XI for June

  By Jeff Vorva Staff Writer She’s not just the Chicago area’s secret anymore. The progress of Orland Park native Tatumn Milazzo as a professional soccer player is not catching only Chicago’s attention, but that of the NWSL. The second-year Chicago Red Stars defender opened her career seeing a lot of bench time early in…

Back of the Yards graduate Roxy Herrera receives a hug after winning an award for being one of the top goalies in the country on Thursday. Photo by Jeff Vorva

Clean Sheet: Back of the Yards grad Roxy Herrera honored as one of top high school goalies in U.S.

Jeff Vorva Staff writer Roxy Herrera thinks she was 9 or 10 years old when she was the new kid on the Pumas soccer team in Gage Park. Thus, she was immediately used as a goalie for the first time in her life. “They told me the new player plays in goal,” Herrera said. “So,…

Democrat Jonathan Jackson (standing, at left) helps his famous father, the Rev. Jesse L. Jackson Sr. (seated), vote on June 28. --Supplied photo

Jackson, Carlson headed for left-right clash in 1st

Danny Davis triumphs; will be unopposed this fall By Tim Hadac While the Sean Casten-Marie Newman clash of incumbents appeared to draw the most attention of all congressional races on the Southwest Side, two other races made news on June 28. In the battle to succeed retiring U.S. Rep. Bobby L. Rush (D-1st), Jonathan Jackson…

Kathy Headley

Farewell and thanks to Nathan, Connor and David

By Kathy Headley Your correspondent in Chicago Lawn and Marquette Manor 6610 S. Francisco • (773) 776-7778 As June ends, we at St. Rita of Casica Parish and St. Clare of Montefalco Shrine sadly say goodbye to Nathan Fernandes, Connor Fitzmaurice and David Marshall. The three are pre-novices discerning a vocation to the priesthood in…

Peggy Zabicki

Grateful for the freedoms we have

By Peggy Zabicki Your correspondent in West Lawn 3633 W. 60th Place • (773) 504-9327 Happy Birthday USA! I am so grateful for the freedom we have in our wonderful country. I hope those who choose to celebrate our freedom by lighting illegal fireworks will be arrested by our police, who I hope will have the…

Laura Ortega

Graduations are so bittersweet

By Laura Ortega Your correspondent in Greater Ashburn 4214 W. 82nd Place • (773) 627-6679 Congratulations to the Class of 2022! It’s bittersweet to see everyone graduate, especially when you can remember those same individuals graduating kindergarten not so long ago. A huge congratulations to my daughter, Liliana, who graduated eighth grade. I look forward…

Mary Stanek

Peck playlot taking shape

By Mary Stanek Your correspondent in Archer Heights and West Elsdon 3808 W. 57th Place • (773) 284-7394 “It’s the things we play with and the people who help us play that makes a great difference in our lives” – Fred Rogers. Who remembers the play lots of the 60s and 70s? Can you recall…

DVN Getty Insurance House Ad
Regional CC Asphalt House Ad