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Staff at Glen Oak Community Learning Center voice concerns over lack of support

WCBU 211108 Peoria Public Schools Board.png
Peoria Public Schools

Security breaches, resignations over mental health concerns, and students with soiled clothes—staff members at Glen Oak Community Learning Center are worried about the state of their school.

A number of teachers from Glen Oak participated in the public comment portion of Monday night’s Peoria Public Schools Board of Education meeting, sharing stories from experiences in the classroom and pushing administration to provide better support.

One staff member shared a story from the perspective of a young student who had an accident in the classroom when the bathroom wasn’t available. The student was forced to stay in the same clothes because no other options were available in the building and parents were not able to be reached.

Another staff member described an incident in which a parent entered the school building and attempted to accost a student who had had a disagreement with their child outside of school.

Responding to the comments, Superintendent Dr. Sharon Kherat called on the support options already in place at Glen Oak, and claimed that the administration was not aware of some of the situations presented.

“I’ve provided a lot of support for Glen Oak, including five parent advocates, and of course we have ELITE there,” said Kherat. “We’ll just continue to work together in a very focused way. We talk about Glen Oak practically every time we huddle.”

Board member Chase Klaus encouraged the board to spend more time at Glen Oak in hopes of providing some relief for on-site staff.

“Our days today were not nearly as stressful as the individuals that came into this room,” said Klaus. “So if we could provide that support maybe at the high areas of concern...I think it would go a long way for them to see us respond to that.”

Kherat encouraged Glen Oak staff to continue coming to the administration when possible, and said that her goal is to provide answers to their concerns.

“Our work is difficult, and this is probably the toughest year that we’ve ever experienced,” said Kherat. “My thinking...is not to make things more difficult for you, but to get the barriers out of the way, and we’ll continue to do that—I promise.”

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