Morton Unit School District 709 serves the communities of Morton and Groveland. There are about 2,750 students enrolled in early childhood through 12th grade.
Curriculum Mapping and Differentiated Instruction
Curriculum mapping, along with differentiated instruction, are two of the initiatives that make District 709 an academically excellent school system. Curriculum mapping documents what the teacher completed and how the material was assessed. A curriculum map shows what was actually done; not just what was planned. Teachers have access to all “maps” so they can create horizontal and vertical alignment. Curriculum maps help this process because they document the topics that have been covered and they help teachers ensure that the topics are covered as efficiently as possible, without redundancy. Differentiated instruction means teachers offer different activities in the classroom to meet the needs of different learning styles and different learning levels.
District 709 four elementary schools: Lettie Brown, Grundy, Jefferson, and Lincoln. Elementary students consistently perform at a high level on the ISAT (Illinois Standards Achievement Test). Innovative methods and programs are in place to ensure this success continues.
Morton Junior High
After grade school, students in District 709 advance to Morton Junior High, which consists of grades seven and eight. The Junior Potters have the opportunity to compete in various athletics and participate in many clubs. MJHS uses MAP testing to assist each student as they prepare for high school. The principal and assistant principal at MJHS meet with each student individually to establish goals for MAP testing and how to improve those test scores.
Morton High School
Morton High School offers more than 150 courses — 25 of which are honors levels that are audited for rigor every five years. MHS also offers dual-credit classes with Illinois Central College.
MHS is one of the state leaders in the Project Lead the Way curriculum. This pre-engineering program was established to assist schools in developing students with the knowledge needed to succeed in engineering and technology-based careers. MHS has been recognized and rated as a high-performing high school by the Chicago Sun Times and most recently received the 2010 Red Quill Award from the ACT Midwest Regional Office. The award was created to recognize schools that are taking an innovative approach to improve their curriculum and have shown consistent growth in student ACT scores over time. Students at MHS are encouraged to excel outside the classroom, too. They participate in many clubs, organizations, and athletics. MHS is proud to have a strong music tradition. The MHS marching band has been crowned state champions for several years. The orchestra program is one of the strongest in downstate Illinois, with more that 90 students. In fact, about 25 percent of MHS students are enrolled in formal music training at MHS.