Information | Communication | Transparency | Accountability

A Movement By Citizens  Demanding Transparency, Accountability, and Community Engagement for school districts in the State of Illinois.

Building A Better District is a taxpayer-led movement and is not affiliated with, nor endorsed by, the State or Regional Board of Education, any individual school district, or administration/Board of Education. 

About Us

Building A Better District was born out of a group of parents and resident taxpayers that believe transparency, community engagement, intentional & ongoing two-way dialogue, and open processes are critical to the trust in and success of our school district and Board of Education.  While there are a number of parents and empty-nester residents involved in this effort,  Building A Better District has been brought to the internet by Andy Dogan and Micheline Welch, local parents with children attending the schools in our distrct.

We are a non-partisan movement!  Our aim is to bring together a broad audience in our community to work together on challenges we face in our district with a special focus on increasing district transparency, accountability, and communication for the community.


Andy Dogan has lived in the Copper Springs neighborhood of Elgin with his wife Julie and daughter Alayna since 2015, and is a lifelong Elgin area resident. As a Managing Principal of Williams Architects in Itasca, Andy is a licensed architect with over 25 years of experience in planning, design, and execution of community-focused projects throughout the country, with specific expertise in pre-referendum community engagement and consensus building techniques. He has designed over 100 library, recreation, and education projects throughout the Chicago suburbs in his career. Andy served on the City of Elgin Parks and Recreation Advisory Board for eight years, and is a professional musician, having served as the conductor of the Lake Geneva Symphony Orchestra from 2001 to 2010. He currently is a violinist and violist in the DuPage Symphony Orchestra in Naperville.


Micheline Welch has lived in the Catatoga neighborhood in Elgin (Plato Township) with her husband Michael and their 3 youngest children since 2016. Their two grown daughters live in Texas and North Carolina.  Prior to becoming a full-time mom, Micheline worked in the resort industry in Orlando, Florida, for over 25 years, serving as Executive Vice President of Owner & Rental Reservations for Wyndham Vacation Club.  Among her chief responsibilities were Yield Management (also known as forecasting) & Strategy, managing resort capacities and improving data models through identifying future trends and analyzing actual numbers. She currently serves on the Board of Directors of Catatoga III Natural Habitat & Wetlands in Elgin, Illinois, and Keep Sedona Beautiful, a 501(c)(3) located in Sedona, Arizona, both of which are environmental stewardship organizations.  She is an avid gardener and is currently pursuing a bachelor’s degree in Sustainability from Arizona State University.   

Why We Are Here

Open processes and community engagement are critical factors when developing solutions to community challenges.  Whether it is capacity issues or programming, extra-curricular activities to transportation issues, engaging the community in strong two-way communication is critical to building and maintaining public trust.

Employing values such as honesty, integrity, transparency, and accountability, humility and a willingness to listen, reconsider, and regroup are also critical.  We have many passionate parents in our community that share a desire to be an active part of the conversation of our district, but feel as if they have no forum to truly be heard.  As parents and taxpayers, we believe none of us should have to resort to a FOIA request just to find out what is happening inside the school district we pay for and only in extreme circumstances should those requests for information be outright denied rather than fulfilled at least in-part.  We have heard from parents, resident taxpayers who are empty nesters, and even teachers about how much the "voice of the community" is needed here.   

We have been working for months with a number of community members on the research we've presented on this site.  We have taken great care to base our research only on the data shared by the district itself, starting with the 2022 Focus Group Presentation and FAQs, and the official enrollment reports issued by the district and numbers shared with ISBE.  Any other supplemental data gathered has been used to try and validate claims made by the district when no source has been provided by them.  Sources are cited whenever we present information (and if it is missing...let us know...we're a small volunteer team trying to cover a lot of ground an information in our "spare" time).

Our hope is by unifying our voices through Building A Better District, we can establish better two-way, open communication with the district, the members of our Board of Education, and make sure moving forward, the broader community is considered the most valuable partner and a necessary voice at the table from the beginning to the end of any issues our district faces. 

We can and must do better for our students and our community. 

Thank you for taking the time to visit this site and look around.  We hope you find the information here useful, relevant, and informative!

Have a question?  You can reach us via e-mail.

About us

We are a local group dedicated to cultivating an empowered and engaged community of parents and taxpayers to build an environment of transparency, accountability, and communication within Central Community Unified District 301 (D301), representing the unified voice of the people for a successful and sustainable future.


Sign up to stay informed on the latest news from our citizen-led organization.

Contact us

Building A Better District is a volunteer community group advocating for transparency, honesty, accountability, and community engagement from Central CUSD 301 in Burlington, IL.

Powered by Wild Apricot Membership Software