Hello HSA Mckinley Park Families,

As I reflect on 2021, I am so proud of our students and school community. We have also come a long way as a community uniting through complex and challenging times. Overall, we are blessed to have an opportunity to work with such an amazing group of passionate parents, students, and staff. I want to wish you all a safe holiday winter season! Also, please take a moment to read the important information below about the events occuring next month.  

Winter Vacation began on Monday, December 20th and we return to school on Tuesday, January 4th. During the break, please have your child continue a routine of daily independent reading as well as other suggestions from your child’s teacher. 

Covid-19 Testing and Vaccine:
We are planning to conduct covid testing when we come back to school which will be available to students once given consent by a parent. This is an important step to make sure all of our students and staff are safe especially after a long break where many are traveling and celebrating the holidays. Also please take the time to get vaccinated if you have not done so. Anyone over 5 years old or older can get vaccinated.  

Our re-enrollment campaign has begun. You will receive information on how to re-enroll. This is an important step for all students who will continue staying at our school, please ake sure to re-enroll by Febryuary 7, 2022.  

End of Quarter 2:
Our second quarter ends on January 14th. Please make sure your child has all their assignments completed and submitted before this date in order to improve their grade. We will also have PSAT practice for high school students and MAP Winter testing for our K - 8th grade students in January.  

Have a Joyous Winter Break!

Mr. Vedziovski
2245 W. Pershing Rd. Chicago, IL 60609
(O) 773.247.8400 | (F) 773.247.8401
Operated by Concept Schools
FLL Lego League Qualifier
On Sunday, December 12th a group of our 5th & 6th graders went to the University of Chicago Lab School to compete at a FIRST LEGO League Qualifier. They were tasked with coming up with a problem and solution related to transportation, build and program a robot to complete a variety of tasks and learn and utilize core values such as teamwork and discovery. It was a pretty hectic day that started at 6:30 AM, and ended at around 5:00 PM, full of robot competition rounds and judging sessions.

Special thanks to Mr. Oz, and Isabel Abarca (Class of 2019 alum), who were both instrumental in ensuring all 3 of our teams got to their different events and were able to compete. Competitions are stressful as it is, and having their support was crucial to the success we had. They both volunteered to wake up at 5:30 AM on a Sunday and come to the competition to support all of our students competing.

All of this was a culmination of their work over the past few months and almost all of these students had no experience with robotics or programming. We would like to congratulate the following students for their hard work and participating in undoubtedly a stressful competition:

6335 - Geari
Ismael Dimas
Julius Martinez
Miguel Avila

6333 - The Conquerors
Natzeli Salgado
Liyah Taylor
Evan Martinez

6330 - Transeers
Olivia Graham
Valeria Gonzalez
Ariana Soroa
Yusuf Ozturk
Sami Kuran
Max Ceja Barajas
Ulysses Mendez

We also would like to thank the several parents in attendance, some of whom stayed with our teams the entire day, and because of that support we believe it paid off because two of our teams walked away with awards.
6335 - Geari won the Breakthrough Award, given to a team that shows significant progress in all areas of the competiton
6330 - Transeers was awarded the Innovation Project Award given to a team that did significant research and presented a well-thought out solution (this was the survey sent earlier).

More exciting, is that 6330 - Transeers, in their first year, was one of 3 (out of 14) teams that advanced to the State Championship! They will be competing in late January! 

Congratulations to all the students involved, we are so proud!
INCS Awards Night
Our very own Carleagle Perez Valencia was awarded on December 6th at the INCS Charter School Excellence Awards Ceremony. A big crowd of supporters were all in attendance for her that night to include her mother and the two staff members that nominated her, Mr. Sravan and Mr. Shiliga. It was a great night and we are all so proud of her. We wish Carleagle the best of luck in all her future endeavors and know this is not the last time the spotlight shines on her!
Season of Giving
We are so happy to share this Holiday season that we were able to donate to one of our community partners, The McKinley Park District, two star boards! Just before we headed off to break we were able to surprise the McKinley Park District with our special delivery. We are so glad we have the amazing McKinley Park District right across the street from our school! The programs they offer the children in our community can benefit greatly with these 2 star boards to help them cater to the after school and program needs of the comunity!

National Honor Society
Induction Ceremony
We wanted to congratulate the newest members of the National Honor Society HSA McKinley Park Chapter. It was a nice evening to acknowledge our inductees and their families. Pictured above is our newest members during the celebratory induction ceremony hosted by Mr. McCully and the NHS Student Board. This is the largest group of inductees we've had in HSA McKinley Park History with 19 newest members. It was a great night to honor this elite group of students.

Congratulations to All!
Pre-Posada Family Holiday Festival
On Friday December 11th we hosted for the first time ever a Pre-Posada celebration. It was a celebration for our families to gather together to enjoy great music, food and games. 

We wanted to acknowledge and thank Mrs. Perez for her inspiration and spirit of giving during this time. Her efforts to bring the HSA Community together during this holiday season illustrates the wonderful spirit of giving and unity HSA McKinley Park cultivates. 

Thank you to all that helped make the Pre-Posada happen especially to Grupo Buho and our vendor Vista Hermosa Express. To our CYSP Groups and their mentors. They came together to support and volunteer in a very cultural Holiday celebration with friends and family despite the awful weather.  

We also want to recognize the staff members that attended and came out to volunteer as well, thank you Ms. Graham and Ms. Maldonado for all the support and help. Ms. Bearden, thank you for your commitment and support. Mr. Tas and Mrs. Kuran for helping with making the Posada and making this an intercultural event celebrating friendship and unity.  

Ms. Kovatch and the HSA School Band! They performed and did a marvelous job in spreading joy and happiness even when it was pouring outside.  

We are very appreciative and proud of the leadership of our Class of 2022. Our HSA seniors gave their time and dedication to making this event a safe and unified celebration. It was a great celebration and we are looking forward to many more in the years to come!
Rocket Leagues Soars High
Our Rocket League eSports team has been competing since October in the regular season. With a 4-3 record, they were placed #22 out of #85, which meant in our rookie year competing in Rocket League we advanced to the IHSA Playoffs

In the first playoff game competing against Lyons High School, ranked #11, and after a very very tough and exciting match, we pulled off the upset to advance to the second round of playoffs.

Our Rocket League team completed a really tough match during the playoffs, with a really close 2nd game (lost in overtime). With this recent lost, we got knocked out of the playoffs and have completed our season for this year.

Although it is just our first year, our team is ranked #22 out of #85, and making it to the 2nd round means we are one of the Top 16 teams in the state. It was an exhilarating season and we are all eager to see our team compete in the IHSA tournament in the spring and back at IHSEA in the Fall next year.

We would like to thank Mr. Conaghan for providing his expertise to coach our students. Also to Mr. Sravan and Mr. Velez for coaching. Special Thanks also to JD (Athletic Director) who has provided significant encouragement to establish an eSports team this year.

Most importantly, the biggest of shout outs go to our all-star Rocket League squad who put in the work to make it this far and are making HSA McKinley Park famous.
- Julio Reyes
- Raphael Salazar
- Alex Sandoval
- Nicolas Roacho
- Gilberto Ceja
Way to GO HAWKS!
Santa's Gift Shop
Thank you to our amazing PTO for hosting their annual Santa's gift shop for our students. Our students had the opportunity to shop in school for their family and friends this Holiday Season. A special Thanks to our Volunteer Gift Wrappers who all pitched in to help us get our students back to class on time after they shopped!
Picture Day with Santa
This year due to safety precautions our PTO Breakfast with Santa was canceled. We know that our school community enjoys our annual event because Santa makes an appearance. Not to worry! This year PTO hosted for the first time, Picture Day with Santa. They made sure to offer our students an opportunity to capture that special moment with Santa! Each student who purchased a picture with Santa also received a goody bag! Thank you to all who participated, we hope you all enjoyed your pictures!
December PTO Winners
Thank you to all of our parents who log on monthly to our PTO zoom meetings. This month we surprised all of our parents who logged on with a Holiday Raffle! Our 3 Lucky winners were: Linda Mota, Juana Alvarado and Wendolin Garcia who won special gifts to include a gift card to Jewel Osco! This awesome raffle came just in time for the Holidays!

Our next PTO Zoom meeting will be on Tuesday, January 11th at 5pm!
Holiday Book Giveaway
On Friday, December 17th, Santa Claus along with our school librarian, Ms. Manzella passed out bags filled with books for our students in K-8thgrade. We wanted to express our esteemed appreciation to Bernie's Book Bank for contributing the books for our Holiday Book Giveaway! This book giveaway initiative is to continue to spread the love of Reading to our students especially during this Winter break.

Happy Reading!
12 Days of Reading
We are very excited to continue our Literacy Holiday Tradition with the12 days of Reading for our k-5 students. Everyday we had a different staff member read a Holiday book virtually to our students and assigned a different challenge to complete in connection to the book they were reading. It was such a huge success last year that we are happy to make it an annual Literacy event for our students and continue it again this year.

A special shout out to our staff members that read each day!
Pictured above are our Holiday Readers:

Ms. Manzella-Day 1
Ms. Banks-Day 2
Ms. Skrbec-Day 3
Mr. Hall-Day 4
Ms. Khan-Day 5
Ms. Cadwallader-Day 6
Ms. Moss-Day 7
Ms. Maldonado-Day 8
Ms. Ghanem-Day 9
Mr. Bivens-Day 10
Ms. Kovatch-Day 11
Ms. Koson-Day 12

Thank you again to all of our families that participated and watched each night!

Congratulations to our Raffle Winners!
Thank you to all of our students K-5 who participated in our daily challenges connected to our 12 days of Reading! This was a very exciting activity we launched to promote literacy and the spirit of the Holiday Season. Our daily challenges were connected to the books that were read daily and we were very happy to see our students participate and send us their photos. We offered 12 opportunities for our students to enter into our raffle, and we were able to put together a great prize. Pictured above are our 3 lucky winners with Santa and Ms. Manzella. Our baskets were filled with literacy board games, crafts and all 12 books that were read!
BPAC Family Night
HSA McKinley Park's first In-person BPAC (Bilingual Parent Advisory Committee) meeting of the school year was held on Tuesday, December 14th. During the meeting in celebration of the Holidays they hosted a gingerbread house making theme with pizza and drinks for all of our families in attendance. Ms. Esparza and EL team discussed the EL department and program, and also the upcoming tests our EL department will be administering in the future to our students. Overall all of our families enjoyed this special night that was filled of Holiday Cheer! Our EL Department hosts these meetings (in-perosn or zoom) all throughout the year and we will keep everyone posted on the next meeting.
WinterGiving Fundraiser
During this Holiday season we are happy to see our CYSP groups doing great things!

Ms. Gonzalez and Ms. Diaz and their CYSP groups hosted a Winter Giving Fundraiser. They collected donations (toiletries) for the Gage Park Latinx Council. The Gage Park Latinx Council will then share these donations with the community. 

The incentive offered to students who brought in an item to donate received a free dress down day on Friday, December 11th.

What a great and creative way to show to our teens the importance of giving during this Holiday Season!
Pictured above is Ms. Gonzalez and Ms. Diaz and some members of their CYSP groups delivering the donations to the Gage Park Latinx Council.
Annual Winter Concert
A special thanks to our elementary music teachers, Ms. Bearden and Ms.Kolevska, for coordinating our K-4 Winter Concert! Our K-4th grade students sang favorite Holiday songs on December 17th in front of their families and friends.
This year our students performed all throughtout the day for safety reasons as Ms. Bearden spaced out all of the shows to practice proper social distancing . Our students filled our school with so much joy as we all missed hearing this annual concert take place in person. We are so proud of all our students! Way to go Hawks!

Pictured: 1st graders preparing to sing for the familes with Ms. Bearden and Ms. Kolevska.
Alumni Corner
At the very frst Empowering Our Youth 2021 Gala, hosted by Concept's Futute Institute, attendees learned more about Future Institute, the programs and participants, partners, donors, and supporters through representative speakers, video presentations, and a panel of program participants and mentors.

The gala was hosted both in-person and virtual. There were 44 people in attendance at the Lakeview Room at East-West University.

We are so proud of our Alumni, Biviana Benitez '20 and Michael Zamudio '20 who were part of the program and served on the panel to talk about the benefits and successes they have achieved by being part of this amazing program offered to our alumni classes. We are so proud to see the leadership of our students and couldn't be more prouder! If you would like to learn more about Future Institute and our alumni support system please visit their website:
Any questions? concerns?
At HSA McKinley Park our top priority is the health and safety of students and staff, and we will continue to follow the guidance of local, state, and federal health officials in this evolving situation. Should you have any questions or concerns please email our school principal,
Mr. Seat Vedziovski at:

Ms. Armouti, Outreach Coordinator:

Mrs. Vega, Outreach Coordinator: