Rise 189

District 189 cover


The Rise 189 campaign grew out of a number of concerned parents, students, teachers, and community members who came together in hopes of elevating the district to new levels. We envision a School District 189 where all students thrive and perform at grade level.

In order to pinpoint critical areas of improvement, Rise189 analyzed data regarding educational outcomes and policies at the local, statewide, and national level. We knocked on our neighbors’ doors in the district to garner feedback from the community about their vision for the district. Nearly a third of respondents felt that the standard of teaching and curriculum needed to be improved.

We believe that in order for District 189 to rise to new heights, it is imperative that the District and community work hand in hand. This partnership should include increasing transparency whenever possible and providing intentional opportunities for community members to engage in strategic planning and goal setting along with District leadership. We also believe that teachers need to be supported in their role.

Thus, we created the Rise 189 campaign to introduce these policy solutions and help the district to rise to new levels of excellence where every student realizes their fullest potential. We believe that involving community members in the important decisions that are made regarding the district is crucial in achieving a more excellent and equitable education for the children in our community.


We request that the Superintendent and School Board adopt these policy solutions:

  1. Implement community-wide strategic planning every three years. Every three years, the school district will formally conduct a comprehensive strategic planning process. A third party will oversee this process and coordinate the district’s partnership with teachers, parents, and students of District 189 and other key community stakeholders including city government, and East St. Louis housing and nonprofit agencies. After the initial planning, the process should be followed by the formation of a three-year community advisory body that partners with the district on implementation and accountability.
  2. Report progress of strategic plan to the community annually. Annually, a third party evaluator will report to the community the district’s progress on implementing its current strategic plan, including an analysis of what has been implemented, when, and how.
  3. Record and televise all school board meetings. Record all school board meetings on local cable and online. Create an archival system for all meetings on the district’s website.



Community Schools Playbook
Community Schools: Transforming Struggling Schools Into Thriving Schools



We are concerned parents, grandmas, aunts, uncles of 189 students. We are 189 alums. We are leaders of our city. Since September, we have been working together to learn about our local, state, and federal education systems as Power-Builders of WEPOWER’s East St. Louis Education Power-Building Academy. We have done research and collected feedback from ESTL residents. From this process, we designed the Rise 189 policy solutions to improve student performance. We are ready to lead change with and for our ESTL children.