Sunday, September 24, 2023

Unit 5 principal, Heimlich maneuver save a life


A central Illinois elementary school principal performed the Heimlich maneuver on a student during the lunch period Tuesday and may have saved the student’s life, according to a Facebook post from the school district.

The halls of Northpoint Elementary (school website)

At Northpoint Elementary in Bloomington, Illinois, a student got the attention of Principal Matt Harr. The student was choking and recognized the need to get help. Mr Harr, like all administrators and many staff members in McLean County Unit District Number 5, is trained in first aid, CPR, and Stop the Bleed.

State laws in Illinois require CPR training for driver’s ed teachers but officially encourage all teachers to learn first aid techniques. In Maryland, early childhood teachers and supervisors are required to learn CPR. In all, 18 states require at least some teachers to learn CPR.

In related news, a referendum will be before Unit 5 voters next month, asking them to enable adequate funding for the district. Informational sessions will be conducted on October 11 and 25.

If the referendum passes, the district says it will be able to “avoid having to increase class sizes, decrease staff, or cut programs; and provide safer and improved learning environments for all students.” Unlike most referendums, the property tax rate for homeowners in the district will actually go down due to Unit 5’s decision to delay implementation of the increase until after other bonds have been paid off.

WGLT radio, the voice of Illinois State University, interviewed Unit 5 Superintendent Kristen Weikle and Unit 5 business manager Marty Hickman about the proposed 88-cent increase in property taxes. According to the station:

  • The money raised by the proposed rate increase would be 10.21% of the entire Unit 5 operating budget.
  • Unit 5’s current total property tax rate is $5.61 per $100 equalized assessed value (EAV). Hickman said under the proposal, the total tax rate for the district would be $5, or $0.60 lower, per $100 of assessed value.
  • The total property tax rate for Unit 5 would drop 20%.
  • The increase in the education fund rate would be 32.35%.
  • Total education fund revenue would rise from the current $63,176,000 to $83,615,000 after the referendum.
Paul Katula
Paul Katula is the executive editor of the Voxitatis Research Foundation, which publishes this blog. For more information, see the About page.


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