Gurnee village government and three school districts are launching a joint newsletter in what officials say is an effort at improving communication with taxpayers.
About 30,000 copies of Keeping Posted+ will land in mailboxes by week's end with updates from the village, Gurnee Elementary District 56, Warren Township High School District 121 and Woodland Elementary District 50. The three school districts serve Gurnee.
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Gurnee's assistant to the village administrator, Erik Jensen, said the bulk mailing will cost slightly less than $12,000. The four governments will share the expense for the 12-page document that uses Gurnee's traditional Keeping Posted update as the template.
"The village sees this newsletter as both an excellent opportunity to build on our strong partnerships with each of the school districts and to drive down the cost of communicating with the public," Jensen said.
Logos from the village and the three schools districts are at the top of the debut newsletter. Readers will see news about next week's Gurnee Days festival and articles regarding the school districts' programs, activities and honors.
Woodland spokeswoman Jennifer Tempest Bova said she hopes the community enjoys the inaugural joint newsletter, which will include a story on the district's teacher of the year, Roshaunda Henson.
"We were very appreciative of this unique opportunity to collaborate with the village and our surrounding school districts to provide our taxpayers with timely information about their schools," Bova said. "It's a reflection of the strong partnership we have in place as schools and as government agencies."
Jensen said village officials saw potential in combining resources for a single publication last spring after learning representatives from the three school districts covering Gurnee discussed how they were communicating with residents.
"This would allow each agency to show and discuss some of the great things occurring in the Gurnee community at a much lower cost than any single government could achieve by itself," he said.
Other Lake County governments have gotten into joint newsletters as well
Last September, Highland Park printed the first community newsletter featuring city government, two school districts, the park district and public library.
Highland Park's 2014-15 communications plan lists cost savings and the ability to present a unified message among the expected benefits of the joint newsletter.