A Message from Dr. Mitchem Regarding March 14 Student Call to Action
Over the course of the last few weeks, students and staff have contacted me expressing their concerns about student and staff safety. I have assured them that we take all steps necessary to ensure their security. In addition to sharing their concerns, students have also shared with me that they see the events of February 14 in Parkland FL as a call to action.
On Wednesday, March 14, high school students around the country will be showing support for the right to have a safe school environment. We recognize that there are differing opinions on how to address issues related to school safety, hence the need to offer students the option to participate as well as respect their right to refrain from participation.
Each high school has a plan in place to accommodate students who would like to participate in this 17 minute event, while at the same time, providing a safe and secure environment. Students will be allowed to exit the building to go to a designated location on campus, but will not be allowed to leave the school property. Our safety and security staff will coordinate with local law enforcement to ensure student safety. Each high school will manage the logistics of those students who choose not to participate. The bell schedules at our two high schools will be adjusted to ensure full lunch periods.
As educators, one of our most important tasks is providing students with the guidance of learning advocacy skills for developing policy when they become adults. As time marches forward, we want to make sure the students of today are ready to assume the leadership roles of tomorrow.
The Valley View Public School District 365U thanks you for your continued support.
Dr. James Mitchem
SuperintendentSuperintendent James Mitchem Jr.Superintendent James Mitchem Jr. has been a part of Valley View School District 365U since 1980 serving as a high school physical education teacher, coach, dean, assistant principal and principal before becoming superintendent on July 1, 2011.
His VVSD career began as a PE and health teacher at both Romeoville and Bolingbrook high schools. Five years later he became Dean of Students at RHS, a position he held for nine years before becoming RHS Administrative Dean of Students for one year.
When DePaul University, Mitchem's alma mater, called on him to serve as their Director of Athletic Academic Advising, he left RHS for three years before returning to Valley View in 1999 as Assistant Principal for Student Affairs at BHS. A year later he became Principal of what was then B.J. Ward Middle School in Bolingbrook. In 2002 he was named Principal of Romeoville High School and in 2006, he took over the principal's role at Bolingbrook High School, a position he held until becoming superintendent.
Mitchem holds a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Education and a Master of Arts Degree in Educational leadership from DePaul and has completed his Doctorate as well as his superintendent certification from Argosy University in the summer of 2011.