May 22, 2019
Well Done
‘May my teaching fall like rain and my words descend like dew, like showers on the new grass, like abundant rain on tender plants.’ Deuteronomy 32:2

It is hard to believe that the end of another academic year is almost here. Time passes so quickly as schools and classrooms are filled with eager students, dedicated teachers, and lots of learning to take place. Take a moment and reflect on the last months where God blessed you to instruct His Lambs. Some of you may have been like me and focused on a verse from Scripture to direct you through the days, weeks, and months of the year.

I often used the passage printed above. I prayed that God would use my teaching to “fall like rain” and help the students grow just as the rain causes tender plants to sprout. I always entered a new school year focusing on how God would use me to assist in the education of the children. How would they sprout and grow throughout the year?

You have served faithfully and each child has sprouted like that tender plant referred to in Deuteronomy 32:2. As I visited the schools the Northern Illinois District this year, it was a blessing to see and hear how you were assisting the growth of each child, especially in their spiritual walk. I heard so many sharing the love of Jesus and reassuring the children that they are precious in the sight of the Savior!

So, as you have tended to the children, now I would share a poem that I came upon recently to wrap up the idea of where you started in August.

The Little Plant
“In the heart of a seed,
Buried deep so deep,
A tiny plant
Lay fast asleep.
‘Wake,’ said the sunshine,
‘And creep to the light.’
‘Wake,’ said the voice
Of the raindrops bright.
The little plant heard
And it rose to see,
What the wonderful,
Outside world might be.”
-   Author Unknown
To many children this year, you were the sunshine and the raindrops. You have prepared them well for the ‘outside world’ and the next step in their learning.

Well done. Thank you for your dedication. To God be the glory of each of our schools and the faithful workers.
Enjoy a blessed summer!

Serving the Master Teacher,
Here are the latest opportunities to strengthen your faith, connect
with the community, and flourish in our life together.
As school continues to get busier and busier as it nears its end, take time to be encouraged through this video message from Lois Stewart.
Summer Programs at Our Schools
Word is out with exciting news that many school in the NID are holding summer camp programs and other exciting happenings throughout the summer months where your students are involved. I would love to visit and see the excitement. If you would like a visit, please feel free to email or call me with dates and times.
Early Childhood
Many thanks got out to the Northern Illinois District Early Childhood Consultants. Julie, Aimee, and Melissa are a wealth of knowledge and support for our schools. Thank you for all you do to support the youngest of our learners in the NID.
Don’t forget… this is the link to our network blog at Watch future newsletters for updates and plans for the 2019-2020 school year.
End of the School Year Meetings
As end of the school year meeting agendas are being written, please consider adding one topic for the Rostered workers on your faculty. It is important and helpful for CMIFs to be updated each year. The end of the school year is a great time to do that. Please consider having each Rostered worker take some time during the end of the year meetings while on campus and update their CMIF. It doesn’t mean they have to completely redo the form. If anything has changed, it can be edited. Otherwise, they can resubmit it.
2019-2020 Hearts for Jesus
As you begin planning your chapel mission projects for the coming school year, please include ‘Lutheran Heritage Foundation’ as your ‘Hearts for Jesus’ project. LHF is the organization that makes sure there are Catechisms and Bibles with the children around the world.
If you visit, you can learn more about the group. A planning packet will be available for your use towards the end of the summer. Watch this newsletter for details as well as your mail in early August for a packet of information from Lutheran Heritage Foundation for use next year.
School Support
Many thanks to those schools sending in contributions to the School Support Fund. It is very much appreciated. These additional funds allow us to provide some services that are not included in the regular annual budget.
ISBE Statement on the Length of Instruction Time for Non-Public Schools
After numerous emails and phone calls, the following statement has been shred for the length of the school day for non-public schools in Illinois:

‘You may be aware that the state legislature changed the funding process for public schools, and in so doing, it removed the 5-hour requirement for instructional days. The statute that created the registration and recognition program for nonpublic schools says that requirements for nonpublics cannot be more onerous than for publics, so the 5-hour requirement also disappeared for nonpublic schools. ISBE quickly determined that those nonpublic schools that had not been offering 176 days but instead offered at least 880 per-pupil hours were ok for 2018-19. However, for a time it was uncertain whether the 880-hour practice could continue past 2018-19, and so documents that had to be prepared right away, such as recognition renewal in IWAS and the evaluation instrument for school visits, only listed the 176-day option.. But around the end of 2018, a legal opinion was issued indicating that nonpublic schools could continue with the 880-hour option on into the future. So at this moment, things stand exactly the same as in the past with the exception that, for schools going with 176 days, an instructional day can be of any length. Please be advised, however, that the legislature is considering a restoration of the 5-hour minimum for instructional days albeit with some exceptions that were not present previously in order to retain for public school districts some of the flexibility that came with the removal of that minimum. If this becomes law, similar flexibility may also be available for nonpublic schools using a 176-day year.’
Illinois Coalition for Nonpublic Schools (ICNS)
The ICNS is a valuable group for our schools to be supported by. When you have the opportunity to join in the membership, please consider investing in this program. It funds legislators in Springfield that represent the nonpublic schools in Illinois.

In my last meeting of the year, we discussed the importance and need for schools to review and update their policy manuals in relation to health policies and protocols. Make sure your manuals are up to date with policies on: allergy protocols, asthma protocols, concussion protocols, and mental health protocols. Your staff needs to go through training and be certified for handling these health items. Have the training documented in teacher files.

ICNS also reinforced that our schools may log 880 hours for a school year in 2019-2020.
Tec21 Workshop Program Has Spaces Available
It is time to look ahead to the coming school year. Brent Dieckhoff and Tec21 Have shared that there are still spaces available for teachers to join the group at St. Peter, Arlington Heights. If you are interested, please contact Lois Stewart for more information.
LCEF Kaleidoscope Grant
The Kaleidoscope Fund is a granting program offered by the Lutheran Church Extension Fund (LCEF) and designed to support eligible Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod (LCMS) ministries with outreach and expansion.
This year, LCEF is narrowing the focus of impact for the grant to LCMS K-8 elementary schools. Lutheran schools play a critical role in impacting the community through Christian education. Funds will be granted in amounts between $15,000 and $75,000. The 2019 grant process began Monday, April 1, when information was offered live on the webpage Those eligible for the grant will be asked to submit a grant proposal summary for review by committee. The proposal submission deadline is May 31, 2019. You may print a flier here.
Summer Reading Options
As you begin working on your end of the year agenda, consider have your staff do a book read over the summer. There are so many great choices available.Here is a list of some titles to consider:

  • Be Our Guest (Disney goals)
  • Inside the Magic Kingdom: Seven Keys to Disney’s Success by Tom Connelian (how concepts are applied to a school setting)
  • The Nordstrom Way to Customer Service (Nordstrom – the store)
Other Thoughts on Customer Service
Consider having a corporation with a great reputation for customer service visit with your staff and share their approaches to great service. Visit for more information.
National Lutheran Schools Accreditation
Please remember that you should have prepared your Cumulative Annual Report (CAR). It was due by April 15. The CAR should have been emailed to Keith Wilharm, NLSA Consultant by April 15. With the due date passed, you will be contacted individually for follow up if the office has not heard from you.
Interesting Articles Supported by LEA
  • Take One Step Today to be a Better Leader Tomorrow (by Dale Hudson for Relevant Children’s Ministry.
  • Delegation Defined and Applied (by Naphtali Hoff for SmartBrief)
  • How Do Principals Influence Student Achievement? (by E.M. Allensworth and H. Hart for University of Chicago Consortium on School Research)
  • Where Kids are Spending Their Time Online (Relevant Children’s Ministry)
  • Where Churches are Failing Kids (by Dale Hudson for Relevant Children’s Ministry)

A great resource put out by ‘Lutherans for Life’ is their Teaching for Life curriculum. Take a look at the topics and value they will offer.
Update CMIF Information
We are heading into the time of year when schools begin searching to fill vacancies they will have for the coming school year. Please encourage your Rostered workers to update their CMIFs so search time might be reduced for schools looking to extend calls.
Reporting Retirements
If you have a Rostered Worker retiring at the end of the school year, please have them contact Keith Wilharm at 708-223-3112 or We will need to know the worker’s name and retirement date.
Upcoming Vacancies
If you will have a vacancy to fill for the 2019-2020 school year, please contact Lois Stewart with information so it can be posted in the NID website.

Church Workers:
Update Your Contact Information Online . All rostered and non-rostered church workers are asked to please update their NID contact information when there is a change of email, address, phone, etc., or if new in the district.


For Information on LCEF contact Vanda Toner at 708-223-3117 or

LCMS Northern Illinois District
2301 S. Wolf Road, Hillside, IL 60162
Phone 888-708-LCMS
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