Proviso 209 Update: Tips Hotline Launched, New Administrators, Mid-Atlantic College Tour

The following articles and photos are all from For more updates on District 209 affairs, feel free to go to the website.

District Promotes Tip Hotline

Students, parents, community members, and others associated with Proviso Township High Schools District 209 with tips about potential safety issues now have a hotline that they can call.

Please click here to download the full-page flyer!

The tips hotlines will be at Proviso East High School, Proviso West High School, and Proviso Math and Science Academy. It was an idea that emerged from the School and Community Safety Forum that District 209 hosted on July 16 at its district offices.

They are the following:

  • Proviso East: 708-202-1731
  • Proviso West: 708-202-6351
  • PMSA: 708-338-4188

The tips hotline will be an avenue for students, parents, staff, and community members to anonymously send in information on an incident such as a planned fight or other safety issue on which they have information.

“The idea for the tips hotline at our school and community safety forum was a wonderful idea for help to protect our students, staff and the community,” said Mr. Daniel Adams, president of the District 209 Board of Education. “We are hopeful that anyone with information on potential safety issues at our schools will call the hotline to keep us informed.”

Upon investigation, it was determined that Proviso East and Proviso West already had phone numbers published in their student handbooks. One was also recently developed for Proviso Math and Science Academy.

The hotline will be checked at least three times a day, in the morning, afternoon, and at the end of the day. In addition, district staff is working on other avenues to anonymously send in information, including text messaging and a link for tips to be sent via the district’s website at

New Administrators Add to Strong District Team

Kim Echols

Proviso Township High Schools District 209 had several new administrators begin in their positions during the summer at both the district and school levels.

In the district offices, three new administrators started their new positions, all familiar faces to the District.

Mrs. Kim Echols, formerly the principal at Proviso Math and Science Academy, became the new assistant superintendent for curriculum and instruction on July 1. In her position, she oversees curriculum planning and development for the District’s three schools. She said that she is excited to work in a position that allows her to work with all stakeholders in the District, working on tasks such as implementing the Common Core Curriculum.

“I hit the ground running in July, and I will stay in the race for excellence ensuring that we have value added programs that increase student achievement across the district,” Mrs. Echols said. “We began this school year welcoming our new teachers. I feel the positive Proviso energy, and I know that it is going to be a great year!”

Also starting new positions in the district offices are Mrs. Vanessa Schmitt as the director of special programs and special education, Mr. Todd Drafall as business manager/chief financial officer, and Mr. Dan Johnson as administrator for special projects. Mrs. Schmitt previously served as department chair and also special education coordinator at Proviso East High School. Mr. Drafall previously had worked as director of finance at Cary School District 26 and West Aurora School District 129 and business manager at Minooka Community High School District 111. Mr. Johnson had been an assistant principal at Proviso East High School and associate principal at Proviso West High School.

To read more about the new administrative team at 209, click here.

209 Students Tour Mid-Atlantic Colleges

Mid-Atlantic College Tour

Students from Proviso East High School, Proviso West High School, and Proviso Math and Science Academy spent time on the road this past summer as they visited college campuses from Indiana to Maryland.

The student groups from District 209’s three schools visited 10 colleges and universities, ranging from schools such as the University of Notre Dame and the United States Naval Academy to historically black colleges such as Hampton University and Howard University. They also visited historic sites in Washington, D.C., including the Lincoln Memorial and the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial.

The students, all of whom had recently completed their junior years, were eligible for the tours after participating in the ACT Cambridge Test Prep Program during the spring semester. District 209 provided the transportation and hotel accommodations.

“The opportunity to visit college campuses is a key component in helping to prepare students for life after high school,” said Mr. Daniel J. Adams, Board of Education President for District 209. “They are able to see what is waiting for them and what they can achieve if they continue to work hard on their academics in high school.”

Students who took the tours had diverse ideas of what they wanted to explore.

“I wanted the experience of what college life is like and how it’s different than Maywood,” said Taiwan Greenwood, 17 and a Proviso East senior.

Anthony Skinner, 17 and a PMSA senior, said that he wants to become a radiation therapist. He said that he was encouraged with what he found out about different aspects such as the cost of school.

“Tuition wasn’t as expensive as I thought it would be,” he said. “The campuses were interesting to see.”

Janine Orihuela, 17 and a Proviso West senior, wants to go into the medical field. She said that she was particularly impressed with several of the universities.

“I feel like I got a better perspective on colleges and how the classes are put together and what I want to do later in life,” Janine said.

For more photos from the tour, please click here. VFP

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