Oak Brook committee hopes to bring all to Butler District 53
Updated: February 4, 2013 1:15AM
OAK BROOK — The Working Group on District 53 Boundary and Related issues had its first meeting Monday with representatives from the village, Butler Elementary District 53 and Oak Brook homeowners groups from areas not served by District 53.
About two-thirds of Oak Brook is served by District 53, but the remaining parts of the village are served by elementary districts Salt Creek 48, Downers Grove 58, Hinsdale-Clarendon Hills 181, and Elmhurst Unit District 205.
Some residents already have taken requests to the DuPage County Regional Board of School Trustees to detach from their current districts and annex into District 53 That process often takes several years and can be costly.
While involvement is limited for the village and District 53 in an actual detachment process, officials from both groups pledged support.
“This is about the unity of Oak Brook,” Village President Gopal Lalmalani said. “The village can fit in to help everyone work together and pool resources.”
Lalmalani said he applauds the efforts of the residents of non-District 53 schools.
District 53 Superintendent Sandra Martin said the district would benefit from additional students because of declining enrollment. The district has 436 students enrolled.
Martin said the District 53 Board is considering a policy that would allow Oak Brook residents who don’t live within district boundaries to attend its schools by paying tuition of $19,832 for each student, each school year. That amount is the per student expenditure by District 53, Martin said.
Residents of the Timber Trails/Mary Lane subdivision plan to stay involved in the committee, despite being too far along in their detachment attempt from Salt Creek Elementary District 48 and DuPage High School District 88 to benefit from the committee’s efforts.
The Timber Trails/Mary Lane residents filed a request four years ago for detachment in hopes of annexing to District 53. The regional board approved the request; however, an appeal in DuPage County Circuit Court by Salt Creek 48 and DuPage 88 overturned the initial ruling. The Timber Trails/Mary Lane residents appealed to the county Appellate Court; that case is pending.