The Skokie Home Scoop  - December 15, 2017 

Dear Skokie Families,

Last week, our students involved in band, orchestra and/or chorus were showcased in evening concert events for our families. Today, our students and staff were treated to a special holiday performance from each of these three groups, followed by a holiday sing-along. Skokie has hosted this in-house event for many years, and it is a highlight we all look forward to this time of year. It is also a fantastic opportunity for our students to show off what they have learned and how they have grown as budding musical artists. Thank you to Mr. Vowles, Mr. Rzeszutko, Ms. Nussbaum, Ms. Parisoli and Ms. Balkin for the tireless efforts they dedicate to supporting our students in the musical arts, and for helping to provide the well-rounded, whole-child learning environment that we embrace in Winnetka.

As we head into the final week before winter break, I wanted to highlight a couple of upcoming events:

  • Keep an eye out for an invitation in the new year to participate in Friday Coffee Chats. These informal discussions will center on a theme, providing parents an opportunity to connect with each other and with school administrators/staff on topics that are relevant and pertinent to raising middle school children. We look forward to topics like social media, cell phone use, effective communication, and more.

  • The Skokie School Report Card Committee has dedicated time over the last year and a half to reviewing and revising our trimester progress report. Based on feedback from staff and parents, we have noted the dissatisfaction with our current progress report format. We are pleased to announce that the Trimester II Progress Report will reflect formatting changes in response to that feedback, as well as a change in the way we show the longitudinal growth of our students. Previously, our report cards have used two benchmark indicators: Demonstrating and Developing (both of which are difficult to discern from each other when abbreviated on the report). We will now shift to three indicators: Beginning, Progressing and Demonstrating, each with clear definitions of what type of growth they are indicating. This will allow for a clearer designation in growth over time, and a more distinctive way to read measured progress for parents. You will receive more information closer to the close of Trimester II, but as you look over this trimester's progress report, we wanted to note the coming change.

  • Finally, each year, all five of The Winnetka Public Schools participate in creating a School Improvement Plan. This is a practice that is in place in many public school districts, and provides a direct line of communication between the school sites and their school board as to what is being focused on and how that focus is impacting the growth of students. The Skokie School has engaged in a number of significant initiatives and improvements over the last four years. As a result, this year's School Improvement Plan is dedicated to showcasing how those changes continue to be monitored in relationship to the way they impact students. I look forward to sharing information from that plan with all of you in the new year, as it is certainly your continued partnership and support that aids in making our school successful.

Enjoy the time together with your family this weekend. We look forward to seeing everyone back on Monday for a fun week before break!

Most Sincerely,  
Kelly Tess
Follow us on Twitter: @skokie36

This holiday give our school a gift that doesn't cost a thing! Please remember to
turn in your 2017 Grand  Food Center receipts to support the Skokie-Washburne 
PTO, as well as The  Grand, our fabulous local grocery store.

We need to turn in all receipts for 2017 by December 22, 2017so please bring them in as soon as possible so that we can total and submit them to The Grand. 
Thank you!

District News

If you were not able to pre-register your child on December 1, 2017, 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
we have proper staffing for our students. 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
verified and all forms are submitted. If you have any questions,
please contact the District Office at 847-446-9400.

As is always our goal in Winnetka, keeping our students at the center of all that we do
is vital to the
Future Ready D36 process. As part of our research on how facilities and
learning environments best meet the needs of students today and prepares them for
the future, the
Future Ready D36 Core Team has toured several schools in and around
the North Shore as well as California, Minnesota, and Virginia. Student-centered
design elements observed include...

  • Flexible furniture that is easy to move, comfortable, and a variety of heights and sizes to meet students' learning needs and enhance collaboration
  • Abundant natural light, which research says creates a more positive learning environment
  • Walls that move, allowing collaboration amongst classrooms as well as a multipurpose use
  • Innovative technology to support teaching and learning incorporated throughout classrooms, common areas, and libraries
  • Accessibility for ALL students, staff, and visitors
  • Modern safety technology to best protect students and staff in the event in an emergency
  • Access to green spaces for hands-on learning both outside (i.e. a rain garden and green roof) and inside (i.e. a hydroponics lab and greenhouse)  
  • Energy efficiency resulting in cost savings and positive stewardship of natural resources
  • Thermal comfort to support research on temperature conditions ideal for learning
  • The incorporation of historic elements into new or renovated buildings
The Future Ready D36 Core Team continues to research and explore solutions to best
meet the needs of our students and school community. Upcoming community
engagement opportunities will be announced after Winter Break.
Meeting materials are
available for
Future Ready D36 at .

Opportunity for Students 
The Students involved with Technology Conference (SIT), is a n annual conference for 3rd through 12th grade students.  The event will be held on February 10, 2018, from 8:30 at-2:00 p.m. Westgate Elementary School in Arlington Heights.  What makes the conference unique is that it is completely presented by students for students with adult volunteers from local schools and the community to help the day run smoothly.

SIT is a great opportunity for your child to learn from their peers or to step into a leadership role by sharing their expertise.  Space is limited and registration is accepted on a first come, first served basis.  For information and registration visit

Calling All Winnetka Public Schools Alumni! 
The Winnetka Public Schools features a monthly "Alumni Spotlight" column to highlight how graduates are making a difference in the world. From entrepreneurial 
ventures, to helping others through charitable endeavors, to pursuing excellence in
academia or the arts, the District wants to hear your story. Interested candidates should
email Communications Coordinator Kate Hughes at .

Follow The Winnetka Public Schools on Social Media
To get a glimpse of the exciting school events and classroom activities taking place
day-to-day in D36, read articles on topics of interest, and more, connect with us on
social media by clicking on the icons at the bottom of the newsletter.

TREX Plastic Film Challenge
Thanks to the Green Team for organizing the TREX Plastic Film Challenge, which runs
now through April 2018. Each year all schools participate in this program to collect
plastic bags and wrap, which are recycled and made into alternate wood products.
Collection bins are now in our schools. Please use these bins ONLY for recyclable
materials. School communities that collect the most plastic will be announced on Earth
Dates to Note 

December 19, Tuesday
School Board Meeting
Washburne RC
7:15 p.m.
December 23 - January 7 
Winter Vacation
January 8,  Monday 
Schools Reopen

Art Club Returns in January
Tuesday and Wednesday Art Clubs will start their second session when we return in January.
Art Club will have two independent sessions, students may enroll in only one.
Sessions start Jan 9th, 10th and run through
March 20th, 21st. 
Art Club will not meet
February 13th and 14th

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