New-look LSC honors community contributions on conference night during Nov. 18 meeting


The LSC meeting during their November meeting. (Screenshot from Lane Tech YouTube channel)

By Aidan Sadovi, Managing Editor

The LSC’s Nov. 18 meeting, held on the night of parent teacher conferences, was the second LSC meeting to include new student representatives and also the first of the year to take time out to bestow awards to those who have contributed to the Lane community — in the arts, sports or advocacy.


At the beginning of the meeting, Chairperson Haite gave three awards to those who have significantly contributed to the community.

First was the Jenkins family, who created The Midnight Circus, which brings circus performers to parks around Chicago while also raising money for park district programs, renovations and community groups. Per the award certificate, the circus attracted 25,000 people during the 2019-2020 season, and it has also raised $1.5 million for neighborhood parks. Both Jenkins children are students at Lane.

Next, the LSC honored Lane Tech’s Women’s Varsity and Frosh-Soph Swimming and Diving, Women’s Junior Varsity Cross Country, Men’s Varsity, Frosh-Soph and Freshman Cross Country, and Men’s Junior Varsity and Frosh-Soph Green Soccer for winning city championships during the fall season.

Finally, Lane Tech Alumnus, parent, former Friends of Lane member and advocate Cynthia Rivera was honored. Rivera was highlighted for her six years spent on the board of FOL, serving as vice president along with being the chairperson for the school spirit store for six years. Rivera advocated for teacher grants, kept the school store running from her basement during the pandemic and started a cross-country booster club, according to the certificate.

Public Participation

Chairperson Haite remarked on communication she has received in regards to Student Online Personal Personal Protection Act and how it has affected Lane, saying that “there was still a lot of talk about SOPPA and wishing we could change CPS.”

Haite also received two emails about the Lane symbol committee, the first being an email from class of ’76 alumnus Glenn Hamilton, who wished to join the committee. In his email read aloud during the meeting, Hamilton pointed to his status as a parent to three former Lane Tech students and said he is 25 percent Cherokee.

Also submitted but not read was a long email from an alumnus criticizing the symbol renaming process.

State of the School 

Principal Thompson started her State of the School speech by outlining the district’s five year plan focused on equity. The mission, she said, is about “quality education for every student and child in every neighborhood.”

Thompson said Lane is currently surpassing all of the district’s high school goals, as 99.6% of freshmen are on track to graduate, compared to the district’s goal of 90% for high schools. As of the latest grading data, only 9 freshmen are not on track to graduate. “That is amazing,” Thompson said to an applauding LSC.

As for the Lane Tech school vision, Thompson said the school is focused on preparing students for their future post-secondary endeavors.  After speaking about the CIWP program, Thompson also said that CPS would be starting a new program under the same name but with different priorities.

Thompson also touched on the last year, detailing new hires like new case managers, social workers, a College and Career Center (CCC) coach and more. The CCC coach was funded by CPS’ Moving Forward grant given to the school during the pandemic.

She also talked about the one-to-one model, which provides students with Chromebooks, thanking the Friends of Lane (FOL) group, the district and Lane’s tech department for helping with the program, which she referred to as a “beast.”

As previously communicated by the school in a November 3 email, the demerit system is returning. Thompson said the behavior of students has changed accordingly with the implementation of the new system, saying that “the hallways are a little bit emptier now by eight o’ clock. … People are coming back from Starbucks a little faster from lunch.”

She also added that there are “ways for restoration.” In order to have demerits removed, according to Thompson, students must change their behavior and “advocate for themselves and fill out a form.”

There is also a mentoring program in the process of development among the administration, to connect students with “alumni, other staff, an adult or even another student.”

At week five, administration put out a survey for feedback, which was filled out by 3,600 students, according to Thompson. Thompson said 86.5% of respondents felt that staff had been supportive or very supportive for students. Thompson thanked those who are “on the front lines in the classrooms and the hallways,” and said students were “making connections” and “advocating for themselves.” Most students also said they strongly agreed or agreed that there was someone at Lane whom they could reach out to should they run into problems.

Thompson said the survey would be given out every five weeks, so Lane administration could “institute more programs that would be helpful [for students].”

Thompson also spoke about the progress reports given to schools from CPS, the School Quality Progress Report, and said she was amazed that Lane had not seen more learning loss due to the pandemic. Lane saw increases in unadjusted attendance and proficiency in ELA and Math.

Finally, the principal spoke of the new College and Career Coach, Erin Driesbach, who Thompson said was “working tirelessly to push students and provide resources.”

The majority of the $562,000 given though this grant has gone to programs that “help students,” such as substitute teachers and bus cards for students who can’t afford public transportation, according to Thompson.

Principal’s Report 

Principal Thompson gave copies of the principal’s report to the LSC and said a copy would be posted online along with meeting minutes, but as of Nov. 22 they are not on the Lane Tech LSC website.

PPLC Report

The PPLC (Professional Personnel Leadership Committee,) will have its first meeting on Monday, Nov. 22, after school at 3:30.

Friends of Lane (FOL) Report

A Friends of Lane representative, Ms. Borelli, said that the FOL has been  pursuing community contributions online rather than through traditional mail.

Borelli said FOL was pursuing 100% participation from every family. “If every family gave $10 we’d be way ahead of the game,” Borelli said.

Borelli also said that the spirit store has made $83,000 as of Thursday’s meeting.

Alumni Association 

A representative from the Alumni Association  said a virtual coat drive will happen in December, and a virtual discussion session for the 50th anniversary of women at Lane will be held Nov. 30.

On Nov. 22, the association submitted final documentation for the request to name the football field after Lane alum and former professional football player Fritz Pollard.

Additionally, members worked this summer to repatriate significant objects and valuables that were damaged after the Alumni Association office was flooded.

Symbol Committee 

Chairperson Haite said she contacted teachers who are also alumni, but there is currently no symbol committee because students who were on it have graduated and the teacher involved is too busy.

Another survey to gauge ideas for a symbol will tentatively be sent out, though it will be narrowed down to a multiple-choice vote to help Haite analyze the votes more efficiently. Once a top three is decided from choices, a vote determining the symbol from there will be sent out only to students.


There was one purchase from Apple, for the Macbook Pros from the Music lab that needed an upgrade. It was $28,128.

The first fundraiser will be Playfest on April 28-29, where tickets will be sold for $5 each.

The other is for the winter musical starting on Feb. 16 where tickets will be sold for $10 each.

Ticket sales will now be considered fundraisers, and as such, must be approved by the LSC.

All three items were approved.

The next LSC meeting will be Thursday Dec. 2 in room 113, and live streamed from the Lane Tech Youtube channel.