The Skokie Home Scoop -April 6, 2018 

Dear Skokie Families,

I hope you have all had a great week since returning from the break.  Dave Kanne and I were thrilled to see a great group of 30+ parents join us this morning for Coffee and Conversation around the theme of cell phones.  Those that attended were a part of small groups that reviewed articles and then shared out impressions from the reading which either personally confirmed, informed or contradicted facts around cell phone use.  An informal, themed discussion like this allows us to connect with each other, flex with trends of the conversation and support each other by sharing ideas or experiences that have worked in our own homes.  The articles we shared this morning are all linked below, if you'd like to reference them yourself.  We look forward to hosting another Coffee and Conversation event on Friday, May 11 at 9:30 in the Skokie Community Room.  This session will center on the theme of anxiety, both in adolescents and the parents of adolescents.  We hope you will consider making the time to join us.

We also look forward to hosting a Winnetka Parent Institute event titled "Not Quite Little Kid, Not Quite Teenager:  The Developmental Progression of the Adolescent Brain" on Friday, May 18 at 9:30am in the Skokie Community Room.  This is the fifth time this presentation has been offered to parents, and has been well-received by our parents looking to understand more about how and why our teens and pre-teens do what they do!  If you have not already attended this presentation, we hope you can make it.  

Despite the way the weather may feel, it is technically spring.  We hope to see a warm-up soon, but until then, remind your 5th or 6th grader that they may still need a hat and gloves!  Enjoy the time together with your family this weekend, and we'll look forward to seeing everyone back on Monday.

Most Sincerely,

Kelly Tess

                       SAVE THE DATE

    The Skokie School Baldies (St. Baldrick's)
              The Skokie School Clippers (Wigs for Kids)
What:      Shaving our heads and cutting our hair.
When:     Monday, April 30th, from 2:45 p.m. - 4:30 p.m.
Where:   The Skokie School Auditorium

Why:    To raise money in support of childhood cancer research and                
to provide wigs for children who have no hair.  
Registration Deadline: Friday, April 27, 2018
See Mr. Rowe, Ms. Goldberg, or Mr. Hynes

The St. Baldrick's Foundation began eighteen years ago when a group of friends and business colleagues challenged one another to give back in return for their own good fortune.  One of the friends came up with a challenge to another - shave your head to raise funds for kids with cancer.  From this initial challenge, the St. Baldrick's Foundation has grown into an organization that has donated more than $100 million dollars to support childhood cancer research.  
This will be the 15th year that the Skokie School Baldies have been shaving their heads in support of St. Baldrick's.  Last year they had 36 "shavees" and a handful of student volunteers. We again are also having a Wigs for Kids providing an opportunity for females to participate more comfortably without shaving their heads. For over 30 years, Wigs for Kids has been providing Hair Replacement Systems and support for children who have lost their hair due to chemotherapy, radiation therapy, Alopecia, Trichotillomania, burns and other medical issues at no cost to children or their families. This year we are adding a special opportunity for kids that doesn't require them to cut their hair, but instead they can add a colored hair extension to support the cause.  More info for the students will follow next week during lunch times.
For more information on the St. Baldrick's Foundation and Wigs for Kids, please visit their web sites:

District News
As the Future Ready D36 Core Team continues to  refine possible Educational Master Facility Plan concepts over the course of the spring, we are seeking your continued input and involvement.

The District has added another community engagement session including a presentation on the concepts, Q & A, and an additional opportunity to provide your valuable feedback.  This engagement will be the same format as the March outreach sessions.

Friday, April 13 from 9:30 a.m. to 11:00 a.m.
The Skokie School, 520 Glendale Ave.

If you are unable to attend but have further feedback or ideas to share, you may email . Please note that the Core Team will review the emails received, but will not respond to each message. To learn more, documents and meeting materials regarding Future Ready D36 are available at .

Over the spring, there will be ongoing revisions to the proposed models based on our community's feedback. It is anticipated that the Board will approve a master plan in June 2018.

2018 PARCC Assessment
The PARCC assessment will be administered to students in grades 3 through 8 from April 4-20, 2018.   Grades 3 - 5 will complete 7 testing sessions (3 Language Arts and 4 math) and Grades 6 - 8 will complete 6 testing sessions (3 Language Arts and 3 Math).  Individual teachers or schools will be sending details concerning specific dates and times of testing sessions. In order to ensure that students feel comfortable in the testing environment and understand the nature of the questions that will be presented on the exam, teachers will be familiarizing students with the testing platform and expectations. The Illinois State Board of Education requires all public school districts to administer the PARCC exam. For a list of Frequently Asked Questions, please visit .

Updates regarding the future of PARCC/State Assessment
In a letter dated February 9, 2018, Tony Smith, State Superintendent of Education, outlined details regarding changes to the State Assessment process that will begin in the 2018 - 2019 school year.  With continual growth and improvement of the statewide assessment process in mind, Illinois will no longer use PARCC in its current form. The state plans on developing a new Illinois Assessment of Readiness utilizing core features of PARCC in alignment with Illinois state standards.  The new assessments will continue to include complex tasks in reading and math that require strategic reasoning, extended investigation, and writing. As the assessments evolve over time, it is important to note that the standards and our high expectations for learning remain constant.

The specific improvements the State is working to make include:
  • Returning results more quickly, providing teachers with time to adjust instruction;
  • Building assessments from the ground up in more languages to increase accessibility and allow all students to demonstrate their true level of mastery;
  • Reporting results on a common scale across all assessments, including local assessments, so educators can engage in deeper dialogue with each other and with families and students;
  • Reaching full online assessment to support equity of access to rigorous instruction and return results faster; and
  • Transitioning to a computer-adaptive format, meaning the test items become more or less advanced depending on the student's performance as they progress through, so we know not just whether a student meets the standards for their grade level but the upper and lower bounds of their mastery.

Illinois will phase in changes slowly over time.  The ability to compare performance over time will remain intact during this transition. The timeline and specific details for all changes depend on the proposals potential vendors submit to the Illinois State Board of Education.

The announcement of future changes has not influenced the commitment District 36 has regarding our teaching and assessment practices.  We will approach the upcoming 2018 PARCC testing with the same integrity of past years. State testing is one of multiple important measures District 36 utilizes to monitor and support student learning.

Is Your Child Starting Kindergarten in 2018?
To pre-register your child for the 2018-2019 school year, please contact the District office at 847-446-9400 to begin the process. This early pre-registration process helps ensure that The Winnetka Public Schools have proper staffing and most accurate school assignments.  Children who will be five-years-old on or before September 1, 2018, are eligible to enroll. Click here for documents required for new students.  Registration packets are available at the District Office ( 1235 Oak St .). Children will not be considered enrolled until residency documentation is verified and all forms are submitted. If you have any questions, please contact the District Office at 847-446-9400 .
Adventures in Learning 2018
Adventures in Learning 2018 runs from June 18th-July 20th, 2018. (There is no camp on July 4th.) A decades-long tradition, this summer program includes classes as varied as Drone Flight School, Camping Adventures, Make Your Own Music Video, Adventures in STEAM, Archery, The Wacky World of Water, Kitchen Magicians, Tennis, Computer Animation, Improvisation, Yoga for Kids, Animal Care, and Spa-Licious. Students in grades 2-8 may choose up to four classes from over 100 options. Younger children (pre-K through grade 1) will explore educational concepts through guided play and outdoor activities.

This year's program will be held at The Skokie School for the 2-8th graders and Hubbard Woods School for the Pre-K (4 years old by June 1, 2018) and K-grade 1 Primary program (5 years old by September 1, 2018).

Registration is now open for Winnetka residents and is open to the general public on March 8 at .

The Skokie School, Orientation for 5th Grade

Tuesday, April 17, 2018
6:30 - 8:00 p.m.
The Skokie School will host an orientation meeting for current fourth grade students and their parents, Tuesday, April 17th from 6:30 - 8:00 p.m. Families will receive an emailed invitation with more details.
Skokie students identified last year's orientation meeting as one of the most helpful components of their orientation activities. Students enjoyed the opportunity to tour the school, meet the staff, and have a conversation with current Skokie students.  Please mark your calendar.

Dates to Note 

April 17, Tuesday 
    5th Grade Orientation
          6:30-8:00 p.m.

April 18, Wednesday 
   Informational Meeting           on  the Placement Process
  for K-8 Students - presented
    by the WPS Prin cipals                 9:30 a.m. in the 
    Skokie Community Room

April 26,Thursday
         Class Pictures

April 27, Friday 
   6th Grade Talent Show

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