The Skokie Home Scoop

Dear Skokie Families,

As we head into these final days before spring break, energy and excitement tends to spike a bit with the promise of vacation and days to sleep in on the horizon.  Our sixth graders spent this last Wednesday at Washburne for our traditional "shadow day" experience, in which they are able to travel to all of the related arts classes, meet the teachers, and hear about the broad menu of class choices they will have as a seventh grader.  Sixth grade parents were also invited to attend an orientation meeting on Monday evening at Washburne.  For those who were not able to attend, the meeting provides some basic information about the formatting of teams, math programming, special education, advisory, etc.  

Parents often have questions about the placement process following this meeting.  For those with a 5th or 6th grader in the 2019/2020 school year, parents will receive a link from me on Tuesday, April 16 that allows you to provide feedback about your child as a learner.  This information will contribute to the placement process along with input from 4th and 5th grade teachers.  (This is also the night of 5th grade orientation for our incoming 5th graders.) Washburne follows a similar process, leading toward placement on either a four-teacher or two-teacher team.  Those placed on a four-teacher team will have a single teacher for each academic content area, and those placed on a two-teacher team will have a Language Arts/Social Studies teacher and a Math/Science teacher, much like how it has been at Skokie.  This shift to include a two-teacher team at Washburne is due to the decline in student enrollment across all five schools.   

Shifting gears, this past week we hosted another St. Baldrick's and Wigs for Kids event.  This event was a huge success with a healthy group of "Baldies" and "Clippers" participating, along with a group of students receiving hair extensions as a way of showing their support.  Thank you to Mr. Hynes and Ms. Goldberg for keeping this charitable tradition going.  We are looking forward to seeing many of you on the course for tomorrow's Jungle Jog 5k Run/Walk!  The weather will be chilly, but without rain.  Please consider coming to join us if you haven't already registered!

Enjoy the weekend and a Happy St. Patrick's Day to everyone!  We look forward to seeing everyone back at school on Monday for the final week before spring break!

Most Sincerely,

Kelly Tess


#beatree  #everybodyin

AP Corner 
Inside Skokie

As we near Spring Break, learning is in full swing at Skokie. I wanted to shed some light on some of the exciting learning going on inside our classrooms. Here is a sampling of what our students are working on these days:

  • Seen in math classrooms: Sixth grade students are beginning to work with pre-algebra concepts and learn about variables. Students discuss mathematical thinking with each other, draw diagrams to make sense of problems, and persevere through mistakes to master the math content.
  • Seen in language arts classrooms: Students are engaged in class read alouds, during which teachers model thinking about reading, as well as make connections to the work students are doing in their writing. Students are exposed to new vocabulary and learn new words in the context of the story, as well.
  • Seen in world language classrooms: Students use whiteboards to translate sentences that their teacher says outloud. The sentences are connected to a story they have helped to construct using the focus vocabulary they are working on in class.
  • Seen in KW: Students continue to work together to support each other as they climb our high ropes course.
  • Seen in the music room: At the end of Trimester 2, students in sixth grade composed their own pieces. They had a choice of the type of song and instrument they would like to use. The students shared these masterpieces with each other before moving on to their next arts class.
  • Seen in the drama room: Students are acting out a play based on a popular middle school story and making it into their own "movie." Each student has a part and they bring their lines to life with dramatic emphasis.
  • Seen in the art room: Some students are creating interactive artwork that will be showcased at the upcoming Skokiepalooza event.
  • Seen in the band and orchestra rooms: Students were working hard these past several weeks to prepare for various performances. They work both as individuals and as a group in order to refine the sound of their collective pieces.
  • Seen in social studies classrooms: Students are learning about ancient Greece and the battles that took place between the Persians and the Athenians.
  • Seen in science classrooms: Students collect data in their science notebooks as they conduct various experiments. They draw sketches of what occurs, create tables with the results of their trials, and write about their observations.
  • Seen in the Skokie MakerLab: Students use a variety of coding programs and collaborating with each other to problem-solve.

It is invigorating to visit classrooms, approach students, and listen to them describe what they are learning about in their own words. Our students are always excited to share with me, and it is clear they take pride in their work. Skokie is a great place to be!

Winnetka D36-- JUNGLE JOG--5k, Run/Walk:  Saturday, March 16

The Skokie School and Carleton Washburne School are thrilled to co-host this year's Jungle Jog on Saturday, March 16 at 8am.  This is the 5th year that Skokie has helped to organize this race, and now we look forward to expanding our invite to the Winnetka Public Schools Community at large.  The race begins at the Winnetka Train Station and runs a 5k loop along the Green Bay Trail.  Click here to register, and start planning your race costume!

Adventures in Learning 2019 runs from June 17th-July 19th, 2019

No camp on July 4th.

A decades-long tradition, this summer program includes classes as varied as Rock Guitar Band, Life Around the World, Zany Art Explosions, Drone Flight School, Camping Adventures, Make Your Own Music Video, Adventures in STEAM, Archery, The Wacky World of Water, Kitchen Magicians, Programming and Robotics, Tennis, Computer Animation, Improvisation, Yoga for Kids, Animal Care, Purposeful Repurposing and Spa-Liscious to name a few!

Students in grades 2-8 may choose up to four classes from over 100 options. Younger children (pre-Kindergarten through grade 1) will explore educational concepts through guided play and outdoor activities.

This years program will be held at Washburne for the 2nd-8th graders and Hubbard Woods for the Pre-K (4 years old by June 1st, 2019)and K Primary program (5 years old by September 1st, 2019). 

Registration begins March 1 for Winnetka residents and is open to the general public on March 8.

District News

Referendum Update

Mark your calendars to vote on Tuesday, April 2 OR take advantage of in-person early voting (at Centennial Ice Rinks, Wilmette) beginning on Monday, March 18.  Both the D36 Referendum and School Board Candidates will be on the ballot.
Not sure if you are registered in Winnetka or don't know where to vote?  Visit for information regarding voter registration, absentee ballots and polling locations.  
Winnetka community members are invited to attend an upcoming informational session to learn more information and ask questions on the following dates:
  • Monday, March 18, 6:30-8:00 p.m., Carleton Washburne Cafeteria (entrance on Elm Street)
  • Thursday, March 21, 6:30-8:00 p.m., Crow Island Auditorium
Did you know that...
  • Most classrooms support technology and equipment for (up to) 24 students with only 2-4 electrical outlets
  • 12% of water faucets/fountains tested have unacceptable lead levels and cannot be used for drinking
  • $200,000 of emergency pipe repairs occurred at Washburne alone in 2017
  • Students with physical disabilities cannot use all entrances to certain schools or gain access to upper/lower level classrooms/learning spaces
  • Elementary schools function with inadequate or no cafeteria/multipurpose space with 95% of students staying at school for lunch
  • Learning spaces for STEAM, MakerSpace, gym, and Library Resource Centers do not serve students equitably among schools
  • Safety and security enhancements for controlled visitor access, surveillance, or communications systems considered "best practice" in schools nationwide are not possible without modifications to century-old structures.

To ensure that our community is well-informed on this topic, a Fact Sheet and Newsletter were mailed to all residents. School-specific Fact Sheets are here.  Additionally, the District's Referendum 2019 webpage is updated regularly and is dedicated to facts surrounding the referendum : .

Illinois Science Assessment (ISA)

The ISA is an hour-long, multiple-choice summative assessment given to students in grades five and eight. District 36 will be administering this state-mandated assessment during the Week of March 18 - 22.  Students will be taking the test during their regular science period and will not have any interruptions to the rest of their schedule.

Information from the test will provide feedback on District level curriculum. According to Illinois State Board of Education, "It is not designed to make teaching adjustments year-to-year for individual students." Parents will receive a report with the score during the fall of the 2019-20 school year.

If you have additional questions, please do not hesitate to contact your building principal.

Illinois Assessment of Readiness (IAR)

Please read this letter from Barry Rodgers, Director of Innovation, Teaching and Learning:

The IAR will be administered to students in Grades 3 through 8 from April 2-19, 2019 .    Schools will be sending details concerning specific dates and times of testing sessions.

Winnetka Parents Institute

"Understanding and Addressing Adolescent Mental Health and Depression"
March 21, 2019
7:00 - 8:30 p.m. in the Cornog Auditorium
New Trier Northfield Campus
At this event hosted by New Trier High School, you will have the opportunity to hear from several members of New Trier staff, representatives from some of the mental health organizations in our community (Willow House, Haven Youth and Family Services, and Erika's Lighthouse), and Dr. Jonathan Singer, an expert on adolescent depression from Loyola University.  After a short presentation, there will be an opportunity to ask questions of these experts. The goal of the event is to develop a deeper understanding of the varied signs of depression, learn strategies all adults can use to help connect with students who may be struggling, and expand our knowledge of the resources available to support students in our community.
You can find more information regarding the services offered through Willow House here , Haven Youth and Family Services here , and a parent handbook from Erika's Lighthouse here .

Kindergarten Registration
Kindergarten pre-registration for 2019-2020 is now open. Children who will be five-years-old on or before September 1, 2019, are eligible to enroll. The District's Kindergarten Committee and Central PTO unanimously approved shifting to an online process versus an on-site process. This shift minimizes the time needed to pre-register and respects the busy schedules of our families.  

The Registration process is completed in two steps:
  1. Complete an online pre-registration form
  2. Provide proof of residency (documents can be uploaded online): child(ren)'s original birth certificate and a parent photo ID will need to be provided in person. Opportunities to do so will be made available in Spring 2019. The list of documents that will meet these requirements is here:
If you have any questions, please contact the District Office at 847-446-9400 .

A webpage dedicated to Redistricting will continue to be updated regularly: .

Apple Pencil/Logitech Crayon- Available for Purchase
Great news!  The Winnetka Public Schools Technology department is now able to offer discounted Apple Pencils and Logitech Crayons for sale via the newly launched web store.  Schools and classrooms across the district have Apple Pencils and Logitech Crayons available for sharing, this offer is to purchase a personal pencil or crayon. The pencil is compatible with iPad (6th gen) and iPad Pros (not 3rd gen), the Logitech crayon is only compatible with the iPad (6th gen).
To purchase an Apple pencil or Logitech crayon, visit the web store .  You will need to set up an account to complete your order.  Your account only needs to be created once and can be used for future purchases from the Winnetka Public Schools.  Credit cards purchase only.
Webstore (RevTrak) FAQ

Dates to Note 

Parent Orientation 6th grade to Washburne
Tuesday, March 12
6:00pm - 6:50pm meeting for parents of current 6th graders with IEPs - Resource Center
7:00pm meeting for all parents - Little Theater

Winnetka D36 Jungle Jog (5k)
Saturday, March 16

Trimester 2 Progress Reports Mailed Home
Week of March 18

Spring Break
March 23-31

5th Grade Orientation 
(for incoming 5th graders)
Tuesday, April 16
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