About Us

Welcome to River Trails School District 26, where we aim to ensure our students are "Life Ready." 

The district serves a portion of Mount Prospect, Illinois, in addition to parts of Prospect Heights and Des Plaines. More than 1,500 students, from preschool through 8th grade, attend our four schools:

What does it mean to be Life Ready? Our strategic plan explains that we want our students to...

  • Have individual worth and a desire to learn
  • Appreciate individual cultures and respect diversity
  • Take responsibility for their actions and the resulting outcomes
  • Thrive in an emotionally and physically safe environment
  • Establish personal goals and rise to high expectations
  • Demonstrate honesty and integrity
  • Value relationships and contribute to the larger community

School Report Cards

The Community

River Trails Elementary School District 26 is located approximately 25 miles northwest of Chicago and is situated within the north section of the Village of Mount Prospect. The District is strategically located. Rail transportation and O’Hare International Airport are just minutes away.

Within a distance of five miles are four major medical centers and hospitals. The District’s tax base includes the Randhurst Shopping Center and Kensington Business Center.

Residents are served by three park districts: River Trails, Mt. Prospect, and Des Plaines; and two community colleges: Harper and Oakton. In addition, Roosevelt University, National-Louis University, and Northern Illinois University have off-campus sites nearby.

Registration

Students entering school must present up to date medical records, including a physical examination by a licensed physician and immunization records. Children must be age 5 by September 1st to enroll in kindergarten, as verified by an official birth certificate. Three proofs of residency are required to enroll students in District 26 schools.

District History

The School District was organized as the Feehanville School District in 1895 and remained a rural district for the first 70 years of its existence.

The District enjoyed spectacular growth in the 1960's. In 1959, the fall enrollment was 238 students. By 1971 the district had 3180 students, a growth of over 1300 percent. In one decade, what had been a small rural district was transformed into a suburban public school district consisting of seven buildings. In 1964, the district's name was changed to River Trails. Enrollment began to decline dramatically in the 1970's, stabilizing in the mid 2000's at around 1450. The District currently has 4 school buildings (1 PreK-K, 2 elementary and 1 middle school) and an Education service Center. The building that houses the Nipper School facility is currently leased to another educational institution and is a reoccurring source of income for the District.  

In 1995, the District celebrated its 100 year anniversary. The history of the community and its progress are tied closely together with the history of River Trails Elementary School District 26 and the education of its students. The District 26 community takes pride in the far sighted individuals and groups who worked to form the foundations of the District, its dedicated staff, its well-maintained buildings, its excellent transportation program, high student achievement, and high parental and volunteer involvement.

Curriculum

The District provides a comprehensive, standards-aligned curriculum that supports all students. An engaging and student-centered learning environment is created in every classroom as staff deliver differentiated instruction across all disciplines. A thorough assessment system, including the Illinois Assessment of Readiness (IAR), Measures of Academic Progress (MAP), and AIMSWEB Benchmark Testing in addition to classroom based assessments, provide teachers valuable information on student growth. The state measures this success by means of the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) of 2015. Data is reported out annually each fall. A robust curriculum review process exists in District 26 that is reliant on student growth data. If our students are not showing optimal growth in a particular area, we will begin looking at the current programming, established curriculum and our alignment to the standards. If it is determined that new materials need to be explored to support the students and teachers, recommendations are made to the Board of Education.  Most recently, the middle school adopted new reading and math materials. The elementary schools adopted new reading materials during the 19-20 school year. Additional information regarding curriculum and instruction can be found at www.rtsd26.org and more information regarding IAR performance can be found at https://www.illinoisreportcard.com/.  

Technology

The Board of Education Education recognizes the increasingly important roles that  technology and innovation play in the instructional process.  The district has been a 1:1 Chromebook district for the past 5 years for grades K-8. Grades 1-8 take their Chromebooks home. At the elementary buildings, the student engage in coding activities weekly. At the middle school students have opportunities to code using Minecraft, drones, and various robots.  Infrastructure, hardware and software improvements have been a Board priority which can be readily observed throughout the District.

Special Education Services

District 26 offers a full continuum of special education programs and related services to eligible students. Our goal is to individualize educational opportunities to meet the unique needs of all learners. Please visit our Special Services Page for links to important and useful information regarding Special Education in Illinois and in District 26.

Staff

The District employs a professional staff of over 130 teachers, specialists, and administrators, more than 50% of whom have earned advanced degrees. In addition, the district employs more than 50 Educational Support Staff (i.e., teacher assistants, administrative assistants, and secretaries).

Student Population

District 26 Schools serve a diverse population. Diverse student needs are met through programs such as Special Education, Gifted, Bilingual, and English As A Second Language.

Parent/Teacher Organizations

Each school has an active parent/teacher organization that sponsors events and fund raising activities. Most important, the parent/teacher organizations provide many hours of volunteer services to the schools.

Schools Organization

The District is currently has 4 school buildings organized into one PreK-K building, two 1-5 elementary buildings and one 6-8 middle school. An Education Service Center houses the Administrative Offices. The building that houses the Nipper School facility is currently being leased to another educational institution and is a reoccurring source of income for the District. The District schools were expanded in 1991 to accommodate enrollment.  Recent projects have updated facilities and addressed infrastructure and life safety issues.  The District is committed to maintaining updated, safe, clean, and well equipped buildings and grounds.