Regional Institute for Scholastic Excellence Logo


Q: How do we initiate the placement of a student in the program?

A: The student's home district completes an intake submission to the RISE Intake System and then emails all the required documents to If the RISE staff determines that the student is appropriate for placement, the campus intake coordinator will set up an intake conference, which will include district school representative(s), the student and parent(s)/guardian(s), and RISE staff, where they will develop and Individual Optional Educational Plan (IOEP). The student is then administratively transferred from the home district to the program.

Q: Who qualifies for placement in the program?

A: Public school students in grades 6 through 12 who are multiple suspension, or expulsion eligible within the South Cook ISC geographic region. If the student is expelled, they are no longer eligible for placement. Only superintendents and/or their designee can recommend placement.

Q: Does the program accept student classified as special education?

A: The RISE program does not normally accept students classified as special education since the program does not provide academic or other supportive services. That is the requirement of the home district. This is not a special education program; it is a program for students who are multiple suspension or expulsion eligible.

Q: Does the RISE program accept all students who are recommended?

A: RISE accepts most students who are multiple suspension or expulsion eligible; however, the program has the right to refuse placement of students who are a danger to themselves or others based upon disciplinary history and severity of behavior. Our staff will work closely with the home district staff to determine appropriateness of placement.

Q: How long is the student placed in the program?

A: Students must complete one full semester. This means that if a student enters after the start of a semester, they will complete that semester as well as the following semester in the program. Students may be placed in lieu of expulsion for the term of the possible expulsion. Review and return dates are identified at the time of the intake meeting.

Q: What is the cost for placement?

A: For current tuition contact Beth Maloney at (708) 754-6600. Districts are billed quarterly and must pay the full quarter amount for any fraction of the quarter the student is placed.

Q: Who claims the student for General State Aid?

A: RISE claims the student for General State Aid purposes, as determined by law.

Q: Who takes care of transportation?

A: The home school district is responsible for transportation. The home district must arrange for and pay all transportation costs. All transportation arrangements must be completed prior to final acceptance into the program. If a problem occurs with drop off and pick up times, the parent/guardian, transportation company and home district will be notified. Should the problem persist, the home district may be charged a fee to offset RISE staff overtime costs for student supervision.

Q: Who determines whether or not a student is returned to the home district?

A: We hope the decision is mutual on the part of both the home school district and RISE. However, as with all placements, the right of acceptance or denial rests with the Executive Director of South Cook ISC.

Q: What happens if the student is not recommended to return to the home district after serving the time determined in the IOEP?

A: The home district will be involved in the decision whether or not the student would remain in the program. If the RISE staff determines that the student has not made adequate progress for return, and the home district chooses to have the student return, the decision rests in the hands of the home district, since they are responsible for paying tuition costs.

Q: Can parents or private schools recommend students to the program?

A: No. Recommendations for placement are only accepted from superintendents and/or their designees of districts found within the territory of South Cook ISC.

Q: How does the student attain credits for graduation?

A: The home district must accept all credits earned in the RISE program. This means that high schools must find ways to "fit" RISE credits into their home school system. Should students earn enough credits to graduate, they would receive a diploma from their home school district. Report cards and transcripts are sent from RISE to the home school district for maintaining in the student's records.