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Mission Statement: District 88 mission: To work for the continuous improvement of student achievement. Through that mission, District 88 schools have been named as Top Schools in America by Newsweek and the Washington Post.


Learning Services Department

Department Head: Nick Hildreth

Phone: (630) 530-3431

Special Education Menu

Willowbrook Learning Services Department

The 21st-Century Vision for Willowbrook High School Learning Services Department is one of a learning community that welcomes, supports, and appropriately challenges our students. This envisioned future is described by:

A Department that…

Leaders who…

An IEP Team that…

Classrooms which…

Learning Programs that…

Students who…

Case Managers who…

Parents/Guardians who…


Programming and Services for Students with IEPs at Willowbrook High School

Case Management:
All students with IEPs receive direct case management services from a certified special educator Tuesday to Friday during Warrior Time. This designated 35 minutes daily is for your student’s case manager to monitor their progress and demonstrated skill in all of their classes. The case manager is your and your student’s “go to” adult in the building. The case manager will also be at your student’s annual review each year and provide you with nine week goal updates throughout the year. Each year the case manager will contact you to introduce themselves and provide you with their contact information. The programs below illustrate the level of service within the classes your student will receive which are determined at their annual review.

General Education with Consult Support:
Students who are enrolled in all general education courses and also have IEPs will have access to their case manager on a consult basis. As deemed appropriate by the IEP team, students receiving services in this manner will be in their case manager’s Warrior Time Resource (Tuesday through Friday, 9:25-10:00 AM). During this time, the case manager will meet with students to ensure that IEP accommodations and supports on being met, monitor student progress, and help develop post-high school transition plans related to areas of strength and interest.

General Education with Co-Taught Support:
Co-taught courses at Willowbrook High School provide students with access to general education curriculum with the support of two teachers, and at times, a paraprofessional in the classroom. This allows for students to have access to seamless integration of supports, interventions, modifications, and accommodations in order to meet the unique needs of all learners.

Courses offered within the Co-Taught Model:

Bridge Program:
The Bridge Program adapts core curriculum and standards to meet the individual learning needs of students. The program offers a low student to teacher ratio, including a paraprofessional to provide individualized instruction to no more than 13 students in each class period. Consistent research-based assessment is provided to monitor student growth and achievement frequently.

Courses offered in the Bridge Program:

Self-Contained Programs at Willowbrook High School

Strive Program:
The Strive Program ensures a focus on educational success, self-awareness, and community development. It is through this program that all components of the student’s life are brought together to achieve the goals that have been set. Lifelong learning is promoted in the areas of academics, careers, community, and most importantly, self.

Students are encouraged to take responsibility for their behavior and academic progress. Strive offers a safe and structured environment to promote student learning. Not all students learn in the same manner, therefore, Strive will provide a variety of instructional approaches to support their learning. Each student is a valued individual with unique academic, social and emotional needs. The Strive staff will help students learn how to make appropriate decisions in a supportive and challenging environment. A commitment to continuous improvement is essential for Strive to succeed. Parent/guardian support is important to the success of our students. As part of the program, students receive art therapy, music therapy, and pet therapy; in addition, those eligible for IEP social work support get their needs met through program.

Perseverance and Resilience Education Program (PREP):
The goal of the Perseverance and Resilience Education Program is to provide support to students to strengthen their academic and social emotional skills in order to find comfort and confidence within the educational environment. It is a program goal to help students develop coping strategies to address social-emotional needs, and apply those skills in the broader school setting in order to meet academic success. The PREP classroom includes in-classroom sensory regulation spaces to allow students to use coping strategies during heightened emotional experiences while remaining in the learning environment.

All PREP courses are aligned to state standards and District 88 curriculum. Curriculum is modified to meet the needs of each learner. Students have the option to float out to other courses with the support of PREP staff in order to take classes in areas of interest and/or to meet graduation requirements. Various therapies are included in the program including social work group support, art therapy, music therapy, meditation and mindfulness, and pet therapy.

Link Program:
The Link program is designed to provide tiered life-skills and functional-academic instruction. The focus of the program is to provide students with skills necessary for independent living and competitive employment in the post-secondary environment. Students in the program benefit from vocational training/support integrated into their school day, as well as community outings to develop and practice independent living and self-determination skills, with support, in the real world environment.

Courses offered in the Link Program:

Students enrolled in the Link Program will participate in a variety of transition/life experiences that include but are not limited to:

Developmental Learning Program (DLP):

The Developmental Learning Program (DLP) is a highly individualized program designed to meet the needs of students with multiple disabilities (Intellectual Disabilities, Autism, etc.). The purpose of the program is to support the development of functional academic skills as well as everyday life skills such as: money management, social and emotional skills, community based skills, vocational skills, communication skills, self-care, self-advocacy, and functional life skills (cooking, cleaning, hygiene, etc.)

Placement into the Developmental Learning Program is an IEP team decision based on specific student needs. The team determines the placement that best meets the needs of an individual student. The decision is made after a thorough review of the IEP components which may include present levels of performance, goals/objectives, accommodations, modifications, supplementary aids and services, state and district assessments, behavior intervention plans, teacher and parental input, and results from any previous evaluations.

The students in the Developmental Learning Program receive instruction from various related services including speech, occupational therapy, social work, music therapy, and art therapy. Related services are conducted in small group, whole group, or individual sessions. The amount of time that each student receives instruction is dependent on their IEP. Students enrolled in the Developmental Learning Program go out into the community on a weekly basis to practice and apply skills which are being taught in the classroom setting.

Off-Campus Placement:
When needs of students extend beyond the resources and programs available at Willowbrook High School, the IEP team may consider placement in an off-campus setting. District 88 partners with more than 50 different public and private facilities to ensure that the unique needs of District 88 students can be met.

Extended School Year (ESY)

Extended school year is a program for students who may show a regression of skills without schooling during the summer months. Eligibility for this program will be decided upon at your student’s Annual Review IEP meeting.

District 88 LIFE Transition Program

The LIFE program is located at our District 88 Office building. This program is designed for students ages 18-22 who need additional assistance preparing for their adult lives. The focus of this program is vocational and life skills. For more specifics, please please contact the Transition Department Chair, Jack Andrews (jandrews@dupage88.net, 630-458-4512)

Related Services

Related services are provided on an as needed basis determined at your student’s IEP meeting. They are services to supplement their academic curriculum that support their overall success in school. Examples of these services are listed below.

Social Work (group or individual)
Speech-Language Therapy
Occupational Therapy
Physical Therapy
Assistive Technology

Technology Center of DuPage (TCD)

TCD provides a hands on educational environment which supports and encourages individual learning styles, develops occupational skills and fosters professionalism. Staff at TCD keep their education up to date and on the cutting edge of what is current in the workplace to provide an accurate picture of the working world for students to experience. As part of their high school day, students would attend TCD and earn high school credit. Students are typically determined appropriate for TCD at the IEP table, effective during 11th or 12th grade. See link below for details:



Learning Services Department and Legal Compliance

In compliance with IDEA and the "Rules and Regulations to Govern the Administration and Operation of Special Education," mandated by the Illinois State Board of Education, DuPage High School District 88 offers special education classes and services designed to meet the unique needs of students with the following areas of eligibility:

Visual Impairment
Specific Learning Disability
Hearing Impairment
Emotional Disability
Physical Impairment
Intellectual Disability
Speech/language impairment
Other Health impairment

As required by law, program placement is determined by the IEP team based on each student’s individual needs. Students can be placed full time or part time into any of the above programs without barriers to enrollment.
Appropriate District 88 staff participates on the Behavior Interventions Committee. This committee develops policies and procedures for students with disabilities who require behavioral interventions. This is in accordance with P.L. 89-191 and the guidelines set forth by the Illinois State Board of Education.

All students are expected to comply with the rules and regulations as stated in the Parent Student Handbook, which outlines the District 88 discipline policy. In specific circumstances where general policies are not sufficient /effective, an individual behavioral intervention plan may be developed.

Each year a copy of the procedural safeguards and rights for students with disabilities are furnished to all parents and/or guardians of students with disabilities receiving special education and related services. Additionally, all students and parents are notified concerning the District 88 policy on "Behavioral Interventions for Students with Disabilities."

Parents or students interested in knowing about the programs and specific classes available at Willowbrook beyond what is provided here, should contact the Learning Services Department Chair:
Willowbrook High School

Mr. Nick Hildreth
Learning Services Department Chair
(630) 530-3682

Parent Preparation for IEP Meeting
The purpose of your student’s IEP meeting is to review assessment information and to evaluate progress. Input from all members of the IEP team is essential in creating a successful working plan/document. Speak with your student about these topics prior to the meeting and develop questions or information you would like to share and have staff consider during the meeting. The link below provides information and suggestions for you to consider when preparing for an IEP meeting for your student


Request for Special Education Case Study Evaluation
Illinois State law governs the process by which schools consider a student appropriate for an evaluation for special education services. If you would like to request an evaluation for special education services, please put your request in writing and send to Nick Hildreth, Special Education Department Chair at nhildreth@dupage88.net or send to Willowbrook at 1250 S. Ardmore Avenue, Villa Park, IL 60181 c/o Nick Hildreth. Mr. Hildreth will get back to you on the individualized process for your student. If you have questions about this process, please contact him directly at nhildreth@dupage88.net, (630) 530-3682.

Request for Special Education Records
Special Education records are considered a “temporary” record for a student. Law requires that schools keep a student’s temporary record for five years after graduation and then shred the documents. Only previous students themselves or the legal guardian for a person over the age of 18 is able to request records. Please contact Shelley Kanara, Learning Services Department Secretary, at 630-530-3431 to request the information.

Observation Hour Requests
At Willowbrook High School we field a large number of requests for college students requiring observation hours within our programs. As a result, we create an observation schedule for students to follow when they come into the building. This schedule provides an experience in a wide variety of settings where an observer can obtain a perspective in working with a wide variety of students. If you would like to schedule dates to come in and follow this schedule, please call Nick Hildreth, Learning Services Department Chair, at 630-530-3682 or email at nhildreth@dupage88.net.

Practicum/Student Teaching Requests
If your college or university would like to request a placement at Willowbrook for a Practicum or Student Teaching placement, please send the information to Assistant Principal, Yvonne Tsagalis at ytsagalis@dupage88.net or 630-530-3442. Mrs. Tsagalis’ office screens candidates and then will forward potential student teachers to the Department Chair. All student teaching applicants must apply to open vacancies online through our Human Resources department. Closing dates for fall and spring semester and listed there.

Extra-Curricular Activities
Please use the links below to explore extracurricular opportunities available to all students at Willowbrook High School. 

Clubs and Activities: http://dupage88.libguides.com/WBClubsandActivities

Athletics: https://il.8to18.com/willowbrook

Important notice
Students with disabilities may receive related services as part of their individual education programs (IEPs). DuPage High School District 88 will maintain related service logs that record the type and number of minutes of the related service(s) administered to such students. Copies of any related service logs will be available to parents/guardians at their child’s annual review IEP meeting. Parents/guardians of students with disabilities may also request copies of their child’s related service logs at any time.

Name Phone Schedule Contact
Madeline Addante
(630) 782-3116
Jim Bolsinger
(630) 782-3100
Matt Cochran
(630) 782-3105
Brandon Collings
(630) 782-2859
Mary Doro
(630) 782-3057
MacKensye Guza
(630) 782-3053
Nick Hildreth
Department Head
(630) 530-3682
Gabrielle Horabik
(630) 782-2848
Shelley Kanara
Department Secretary
(630) 530-3431
Tiffany Linwood
(630) 782-2858
Michael Marotta
(630) 782-3056
Elizabeth Matysek
(630) 530-3431
Katherine Milling
(630) 782-3102
Susan Moran
Speech and Language Pathologist
(630) 530-3680
Rachel Morris
IEP Coordinator
(630) 782-3105
Bernice Nash
(630) 530-3431
Anthony Pennella
(630) 782-3103
Amy Peschke
(630) 530-3968
Michael Phillips
(630) 864-7482
Maggie Porter
(630) 782-2847
Dalila Ramirez
(630) 530-3698
Yusuf Shah
(630) 782-2812
Elizabeth Stady
(630) 530-3685
Gary Walker
(630) 782-3118
Hannah Walsh
(630) 782-3082
Willowbrook High School
1250 S. Ardmore Avenue Villa Park, IL 60181
Phone: 630-530-3400 Fax: 630-530-3401
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