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. 

$225 Million Bond Referendum in D210 Leads Ends In Closure of New School

The decision to build a large high school is not one that should be based upon internally-generated numbers.  The cost to the taxpaying community is staggering and as our district does not have a commercial corridor to generate tax funds, the majority of the costs of operation falls on the individual taxpayer in the form of property taxes.

On December 18, 2023, the district discussed plans to increase taxes on property owners in our school district to support the 2024-2025 Budget that was passed by the board this fall.  That budget is dependent upon an increase in property taxes, separate and apart from the impact of a $195 million bond referendum, should it pass.

Lincoln-Way North High School in SD 210 learned a difficult lesson after building two large high schools for expected growth that never materialized.  Property tax revenue could not support the operating costs of the new schools and eventually, the district had to make the decision to shut down Lincoln-Way North altogether. 

Our community must VOTE NO on any referendum that is not supported by an Enrollment Forecast & Facilities Analyses conducted by an independent demography firm and shared with the community.

Summary of Lincoln-Way North's Closure

"Lincoln-Way North opened in 2008 after voters approved a $225 million building bond referendum to build two new high schools and update the two existing schools. Lincoln-Way West opened the following year and was designed similarly to North.[3]

On Thursday, August 13, 2015, the Lincoln-Way District 210 school board voted 5–2 to close Lincoln-Way North upon the conclusion of the 2015–2016 school year. The school closure is part of a cost reduction initiative that was established by the board with the goal of removing District 210 from the Illinois State Board of Education Financial Watch List. The school district has been struggling financially due to declining enrollment and funding,[5] as well as gross mismanagement of the districts finances.[6]These factors have contributed to the current investigation of the district by the SEC[7] and the Federal Department of Justice.[8] In 2006, when the district voted to double the number of schools in the district from two buildings to four buildings by constructing North and West, projections showed continued rapid growth within district boundaries for years to come. However, the economic downturn led to a decrease in the district's total property value from more than $4 billion to $3.5 billion and a drop in enrollment and state aid.[9]"

Source: Wikipedia 

Lessons to Learn from Lincoln-Way North

Lincoln-Way North:  A New High School Cautionary Tale

A new Illinois high school costs the taxpayers and is put out of service only 8 years after building.  Read more...

Lincoln Board Votes to Close North High School

A lack of transparency, poor budgeting, and a promise of growth that never materialized leads to closure of new high school just 8 years after opening. Watch

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.


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

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