Evanston RoundTable

Good morning, Evanston.

School will look a little different when students return to ETHS this fall. Yesterday school officials announced they are “seizing the opportunity to revisit the district’s vision as we address some of the challenges in our current structures.” Beginning next school year, ETHS will adopt block scheduling to increase instructional time, clear student detentions and social probation, and eliminate semester exams. These changes will go into effect the first day of school for D202, which comes early this year on August 16.

In other school news, the D65 School Board unanimously approved a list of proposed cuts for next year totaling about $1.9 million. The District will replace 22 reading specialist positions with 18 interventionists; reduce bus transportation costs by changing the start time of the middle schools from 8:30 to 8:00 a.m.; reduce maintenance costs; cut 3 library media assistants; eliminate one staff position and reorganize support in the early childhood area; and replace Camp Timberlee with a day program.  

At the same meeting, Superintendent Devon Horton said administrators had agreed to forgo salary increases for FY’22, which will save an additional $160,000 next year.

This month in Evanston Dimensions, the Evanston History Center answers questions sent in by inquisitive RoundTable readers. Find out why the ubiquitous corner store is a thing of the past and a popular restaurant closed its doors. And if you stumble upon something that piques your curiosity, send us a question at news@evanstonroundtable.com.

Evanston RoundTable membership video

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Help us continue to provide timely coverage of important news and events in Evanston. The civic health of our city depends on robust, independent journalism. Invest in Evanston – become a member of the RoundTable today!

COVID-19 by the numbers: We are checking in with many sources to keep you updated on COVID-19 cases and vaccine information.

  • Eleven new cases were reported yesterday in Evanston; the seven-day average is six.
  • There were no reported fatalities yesterday. Evanston has lost 114 residents to the pandemic.
  • Our City’s positive test rate for the past seven days is 0.9%; in suburban Cook County it is 3.9%, and in Illinois it is 2.8%. 
  • The number of cases per 100,000 population over the past seven days is 61 in Evanston, 83 in suburban Cook County, and 109 in Illinois.
  • Illinois received 752,100 doses and used 752,900 doses of the vaccine in the past seven days. Illinois has used 80% of the 6.3 million doses received to date.
  • About 1.9 million or 14.9% of total Illinois residents are fully vaccinated, including 285,600 in the past seven days.

Variants: IDPH reports 176 cases of the more infectious COVID-19 variants, including six cases of variant P.1, first identified in Brazil. 

Evanston Vax Facts: One-third or 20,901 of Evanston residents 16 and older have received at least one dose of the vaccine, and a fifth or 12,372 of residents 16 and older are fully vaccinated. The proportion of Evanston seniors vaccinated is higher; 88% of residents 65 and older have received at least one dose and 56% are fully vaccinated.

The City of Evanston administered 405 doses so far this week and 1,063 last week. The City expects that nearly all residents 65 and older will be able to receive a first dose by the end of March. More details are available on the City’s Vaccine Dashboard.Check the RoundTable’s resource page for vaccination and testing updates.

Local Election News: Early in-person voting opened March 22 at the Civic Center for the April 6 election. Residents have until April 1 to request a mail-in ballot. See Voting in the April 6 General Election and our Election Guide.

Elsewhere on the RoundTable website

Council Members Comment on Reparations Vote. The RoundTable invited City Council members to share the statements they made at the March 22 meeting at which aldermen voted 8-1 to approve a resolution on reparations.

COVID-19 Update on March 24: ­­­­ Eleven New Cases in Evanston, 2,793 in the State. Gov. JB Pritzker was administered the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine today in Springfield. Despite the slight upward trend in new cases in Illinois, the Governor was upbeat about having three vaccines available to contain the virus.

Masked Person of the Day: Margaret Nelson

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