Districts 233 and 161 Share Student Records


H-F Chronicle

H-F administrators, including four Board of Education members Debbie Berman, Gerald Pauling, Michelle Hoereth and Nate Legardy.

On Aug. 16, the H-F Board of Education allowed Districts 233 and 161 to share student records without student or parent consent. 

This agreement between the districts already existed between districts 233 and 153.  

In fact, talk has always existed about streamlining the transition of feeder districts into H-F, and sharing information between 

According to Superintendent Scott Wakely, “there has always been conversations around articulation for the seamless transition of students between districts 153 and 161 into 233,” and this instance falls under that umbrella.

Because H-F is a separate district than its feeder schools, administration works to provide as smooth a transition as possible, especially with districts 153 and 161.

According to the School Board minutes from the meeting that it was decided, “Dr. Wakeley has already entered into conversations with Dr. Smith and Dr. McAlister on developing a seamless articulation from elementary to high school and working with students as early as possible.”

This sharing of student records will help with this process because it makes the experience of going from middle to high school more like one single district.

It gives H-F an idea of what kinds of students will be entering the school, which gives the school a greater opportunity to fine-tune their programs and focus on the incoming student body.

“One of the downsides of not being a Unit District is easy articulation and coordination of programs and having a direct knowledge of the students as they move through the K-12 system,” said Wakely.

Wakely continued that “it is critically important that for supporting our new students that we have an idea of their present level of performance prior to coming to H-F. Additionally, knowing the specific needs of students as a class also allows for changes in programs to best meet the needs of all students.”

According to Wakely, there aren’t any cons to this agreement.

He said that “there is really no downside as it is really no different than what information is shared when a student goes from 7th to 8th grade or 11th to 12th grade.”

He continued that “we just happen to be in different districts which calls for the data sharing agreement.”

This sharing of student records is allowed by the Illinois School Student Records Act.

Under this law, the sharing of student records is allowed between districts with overlapping attendance boundaries if both  districts involved agree.

Additionally, it only applies to students who are or have been enrolled in both districts involved and “the sharing of student information does not exceed the scope of information that is shared among schools in a unit school district.  However, the terms of an intergovernmental agreement may place further limitations on the information that is allowed to be shared.”  

Essentially, the info-rmation shared has to be information that the districts have access to.

The districts are allowed to place their own restrictions on what exact information can be shared.