Lessons on looking back
SPRINGFIELD – Most people don’t think about it, but if you’re involved in it on either side, few things are as important. Now, the stories surrounding it, told by the people who lived it, are available on the School District Reorganization section of the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum (ALPLM) Oral History website.
“These interviews with 46 people cover school district reorganization from the 1950s to the present from all angles, and include stories by career educators, administrators, citizens and legislators,” said Mark DePue, director of oral history for the ALPLM. “Few things are more traumatic for otherwise vibrant communities than losing a piece of their identity when a cherished school is closed.”
The oral history interviews include parents and teachers on the front lines of the reorganization battle, as well as some well-known names: Lt. Gov. Sheila Simon, who served as chair of the Classroom First Commission; state Sens. David Leuchtefeld, Linda Holmes and Jeff Schoenburg; state Reps. Linda Chapa-LaVia and Roger Eddy; and former Illinois State Schools Superintendents Robert Leininger and Max McGee.
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