September 2018

The Winnetka Wire
Monthly News from The Winnetka Public Schools
Superintendent's Message

Dear Parents, Staff, and Community Members,

It is only mid-September, but we have already set ambitious goals for the year, hosted hundreds of parents at Go to School Nights, and offered over 20 extracurricular activities.  Our classes are deep into units of studies that encourage ALL to grow and achieve. We have officially launched!

A few interesting facts about the start of the year...
  • We are amazed by 136 kindergarteners each and every day!
  • We welcomed 110 new students to the Winnetka Experience across all five schools.
  • We mentored 17 new teachers to D36 who rose to the top from hundreds of applicants.
  • We implemented plans from 34 summer curriculum projects led by staff.
  • We mailed over 4,000 copies of Learners, our community magazine, to all Winnetka households.
  • We celebrated the start of a school year with 1612 students!
In 2018, we continue to strive for excellence, innovate for the future, and foster the Winnetka Experience.You'll see more information below about Future Ready D36, our first Educational Master Facility Plan in over 20 years. This process is intended to address challenges we face and continue to ensure the Winnetka Experience thrives in our schools.  

As we enter into a busy fall season, I would like to thank our entire community for supporting the many facets of the Winnetka Experience in our schools (see video below to learn more). Your commitment to our students matters.

Sinc erely,  
Dr. Trisha Kocanda

P.S. If you follow D36 on social media, you may have noticed that we use the hashtag #WE36...the WE stands for Winnetka Experience. Please follow us for day-to-day glimpses into our schools.
Board Meeting Preview

The next School Board Regular Meeting will be held at Hubbard Woods School on Tuesday, September 25, 2018. There will be a 7:00 p.m. hearing on the Final FY19 Budget. The Regular Meeting begins at 7:15 p.m. and the following presentations are on the agenda:
  1. Educational Master Plan: Future Ready D36: Community Survey Results (Fallon Research & Communications, Inc.)
  2. Learning Space Design Team Collaborative with Winnetka Public Schools Foundation
The Board welcomes public comment at meetings. Each speaker is given three minutes to speak.  The speaker will be notified when the time limit is reached. Please note, the Board uses this time to listen to community questions and concerns, but will not respond immediately to individual requests and cannot take formal action on non-agenda items.  

About the District's Vision

Every day in The Winnetka Public Schools we seek to uphold our Shared Vision and honor our legacy of Progressive Education. When Superintendent Carleton Washburne first came to Winnetka almost 100 years ago, he blazed a trail that has inspired many generations of learners--both in Winnetka and around the world. The Winnetka Experience is rich with hands-on inquiry-based learning, a focus on the social and emotional needs of whole child, and a commitment to supporting all learners to reach our highest limits. You may view this brief video and hear firsthand from students about the Winnetka Experience--something we feel is very special and unique to our school community.

District 36: The Winnetka Experience
District 36: The Winnetka Experience

The Winnetka Public Schools community empowers every student to flourish in an innovative, experiential environment. We support and challenge all learners to actively engage in continual growth and achievement to make a meaningful difference in the world.

-The Winnetka Public Schools Shared Vision

In August, the D36 School Board affirmed current working assumptions and agreed to a 2018-2019 timeline leading to a potential facilities referendum in spring 2019. Key milestones reviewed included a September survey-poll to collect data on community priorities and funding level support, finalization of Future Ready D36, our Educational Master Facility Plan (EMFP) in late October, and Board Work Sessions to define an implementation plan and potential Phase I facilities project.

A review of the 10-year vision for the EMFP focused on a potential K-4; 5-8 Concept which would restore all (3) neighborhood elementary schools to a grade K-4 configuration and consolidate to a single (1) grade 5-8 campus. All planning options considered would require change to the elementary school attendance boundaries in the least disruptive manner for students, families and households. The timeline of late spring 2019 was established for making decisions regarding boundary changes, which will follow the definition of a potential Phase I facilities plan and community approved referendum.

The District reviewed costs associated with modernization to address aging buildings, systems, and outdated instructional spaces. Estimated 30-year costs to address items identified in the Health Life Safety Plan (alone) totaled approximately $127 million; in comparison, the estimated 30-year cost of implementing the K-4; 5-8 Concept totaled approximately $160 million. View an overview of these financial concepts HERE
. Updated FAQs are HERE .

Information, documents, and meeting dates regarding Future Ready D36 are accessible via

Navigating Your Child's IEP: A Parent's Role
Tuesday, October 16 at 9:30 a.m. 
The Carleton Washburne School Green Room
Presented by Susan Hans, Northern Suburban Special Education District (NSSED) Parent Mentor, this session is intended for all parents - whether your child has just received their IEP or has had one in place for years. With years of both personal and professional experience, Ms. Hans will cover the basic components of the IEP process and plan, provide specific strategies on how to make the meeting more meaningful to you as a parent, and how you can effectively contribute to the process and outcomes. RSVP here.

Not Quite Little Kid, Not Quite Teenager: The Developmental Progression of the Middle School Child
Friday, October 26 at 9:30 a.m.
The Skokie School Community Room
Join Principal Tess and Assistant Principal Weir (The Skokie School) and Principal Kanne and Assistant Principal Horwitz (Carleton Washburne School) for an informational session focusing on the ins and outs of the growing middle school child. We will spend time exploring both the academic and social-emotional needs appropriate to 5th-8th grade children, how they change over that four year span, as well as the neurological changes that contribute to these needs.  Parents with current middle schoolers, or soon-to-be middle schoolers, are encouraged to join us for an engaging, encouraging and educational hour together. RSVP here.

An Opportunity to Contribute to the New Trier Strategic Planning Process

New Trier High School Superintendent, Dr. Paul Sally, is facilitating a strategic planning process for the community this year. Dr. Sally is encouraging participation of elementary district parents to share input via an online survey. The link to the survey in Dr. Sally's message (below) is specific to Winnetka Public School District 36. We encourage you to take a few moments to complete the survey so that your voice is heard as New Trier High School builds their next strategic plan. The survey is open through September 26, 2018.
Dear New Trier Families,
New Trier High School needs your input as we plan for the future of our school district in the next decade and beyond. Included with this email is a link to a survey from our independent research firm, Hanover Research. This survey asks about your goals and priorities in areas such as New Trier's curriculum, extracurricular programs, climate and culture, and facilities and operations.
Please take a few minutes to share your opinions with us. This anonymous survey will give our planning committee important information as we develop our new strategic plan, New Trier 2030. The plan will define our district's goals and prioritize the work we do within our school. More information about our planning process will be posted on our website in the coming weeks.
Thank you in advance for helping shape the future of New Trier.  You may also access the survey from the home page of our website,
Dr. Paul Sally, Superintendent

New Trier Township Safety Summit

In August, D36 leaders participated in a Safety Summit, led by New Trier Township Police and Fire Personnel, at New Trier High School. Educators, administrators, and building staff members from schools throughout the Township, discussed best practices for safety and prevention strategies. The District remains committed to fostering a strong partnership with our first responders, supporting a positive school environment that meets the social and emotional needs of our students, and working together to follow safety protocol.

Blackboard Test

At approximately 4:30 p.m. on Tuesday, October 2, we will be conducting a test via Blackboard, our emergency call system. Please know this is only a test when you see the emergency test alert from The Winnetka Public Schools at 4:30 p.m. This test is to ensure that our emergency communications system, which is used to alert parents and staff of weather-related school closures and emergency situations, is working properly. 

In the News

Winnetka Talk highlighted VS America's gift to Crow Island School.

For photos, news and more, follow The Winnetka Public Schools on social media. Connect with us by clicking on the icons at the bottom 
of this message.
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In This Issue

Important Dates

Board Meeting
September 25, 2018
7:15 p.m.
Hubbard Woods School

Board Work Session
October 10, 2018
7:15 p.m.
Hubbard Woods School

Board Meeting
October 23, 2018
7:15 p.m.
Hubbard Woods School


Important Dates

Our annual magazine, Learners, went to all mailboxes in Winnetka this month. If you missed it or don't live in Winnetka, more about Future Ready D36, highlights from 17-18, alumni news, and access our annual Financial Report here.

The First Month of School in 
District 36...

Skokie students collaborating on an engineering challenge.
Washburne students visiting and thanking 
first responders on 
Patriot's Day.

Crow Island students painting together.

"That is amazing!" 
-Hubbard Woods 
students virtually 
visiting  a coral reef 

Greeley students learning together in the RC.

Kindergarten students 
engaging in play-based learning.

Recess fun at Crow Island.

Hubbard Woods students creating collaborative symphonies.

Thank you VS America for the beautiful furniture at Crow Island! 
As a token of our appreciation, the 
Crow Island PTO presented this art piece (with student fingerprints) to  Monica Hartman 
of VS America.

From the Archives...

Greeley School is depicted in this vintage print.

For a list of upcoming FAN speaker 
series events, 

The Winnetka Public Schools community empowers every student 
to flourish in an innovativeexperiential environment. 
We support and challenge all learners
 to actively engage in their continual growth and achievement 
to make a meaningful difference in the world.

The Winnetka Public Schools

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