WIS Weekly

September 20, 2021

A Message From Mr. Longacre

WIS Families,


I need your help with the following:


7:45 a.m. Drop Off

We all know effective supervision is fundamental to keeping our students safe. Please help us ensure safety at WIS by not dropping off your child before our doors open at 7:45 a.m. Currently, we have several students who are being dropped off too early (i.e. prior to the official scheduled start of the school doors opening).


Makeup Work

At times our pre-adolescent students can feel stressed by the day-to-day balance of friends, school, family, and extracurricular activities. Students who miss school work because of an absence will be given the opportunity to complete all assignments and tests in accordance with our absence policy. Whenever reasonably possible, please have your absent student login to Canvas to complete missing homework or classwork prior to returning to school. No student needs an ever-growing pile of homework.


Devious Licks TikTok challenge

We have had some vandalism in our boys’ restrooms. Our custodial staff strives to keep our school environment clean and safe. Students who are identified as being involved in vandalism will be suspended from school.


Respectfully,

Mr. Longacre

WIS Teacher of Excellence

Westchester already knows that Miss Toweson is an excellent teacher, but she has now been recognized by the Allen Law Group as one of Porter County's Teachers of Excellence. Besides inspiring her students in the classroom, Ms. Toweson also sponsors the VEX Robotics program for 5th and 6th graders. Her immense teaching/coaching talent, as well as her dedication to helping students achieve their best, has won her praise both in the classroom and in Vex championship competitions. According to Miss Toweson, "If students enjoy what they're doing, then sometimes they don't even realize that learning is taking place." Thanks, Miss Toweson, for making learning fun, and congratulations on your September selection to the Teachers of Excellence roster!
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This Week at WIS

5th Grade

Language Arts

This Week:

  • IRAs: Discussion started on conflict resolution. We read the books Desmond and the Very Mean Word and Thirty Minutes Over Oregon.
  • We are analyzing the difference in characters, settings, and plot of the Swindle book versus the movie.
  • Classes examined the importance of excellent word choice within our 6+1 Writing Traits.

Next Week:

  • IRAs: Continue with conflict resolution and then we will move on to the theme of family.
  • We will spend the week researching famous people and compiling that information into a slides project that goes with our Swindle book.
  • Writing Trait will be conventions.

Math

  • Last week in class we looked at multiplication patterns, using mental math and exponents and powers of ten. We spent Thursday reviewing in class in various ways concluding with a review worksheet as homework. Quiz 3: Powers of Ten was taken Friday.
  • A new unit starts today focusing on Properties of Addition, Properties of Multiplication and Multiplying Whole Numbers.

Social Studies

  • Students are working on two mini-projects in social studies class. Students are designing a totem pole that represents their interests and their family. In addition, students will create a winter count which is a Native American calendar that represents important events and milestones in their lives.

Science

  • This week, students used the Scientific Method to investigate how different surfaces affect the height a bouncy ball bounces.

6th Grade

Math
  • Next week 6th grade math will continue working with decimals. They will learn how to evaluate decimals with exponents. We will divide decimals by whole numbers and other decimals. On Friday there will be a quiz over these topics.

Language Arts

  • Sixth grade ELA students are wrapping up their first book club this week and they will be writing a reflection based on the theme of the graphic novel. Students will continue to study the works of Roald Dahl in his memoir, "Boy: Tales of Childhood". Students are learning to properly cite and explain details from the text when responding to questions.

Social Studies

  • In Social Studies, we have been learning about the Inuits, First Nations, and the Europeans coming to Canada. In addition, students have learned how Canada became an independent country and separated from being governed by Britain. Next week, we will finish up the Canadian government and do a postcard project. Our chapter assessment is Friday, September 24th.

Science

  • We are continuing engineering design process in science. We built rubber band launchers and catapults to hit a specific target. This week we will be building the “Best Paper Airplane”. All of these activities develop critical thinking skills and utilize STEM skills and techniques. We will use this technique throughout the year. We are also working on measurement skills utilizing electric balances, triple beam balances, graduated cylinders, rulers and protractors.

Club Information

WIS B.I.O.N.I.C. Club

We are very excited to have the B.I.O.N.I.C. Club at WIS..


B.I.O.N.I.C. stands for Believe It or Not I Care. This club is for students who want to help others. Any student can join this club. The club helps others through different B.I.O.N.I.C. teams. There are 3 B.I.O.N.I.C. teams:


  1. The New Student Team - This team helps new students to feel welcome at WIS. The team members give the new students tours, help them at lunch, and answer any questions they may have. Students get paired with someone to help them out the first few days and then check in.
  2. The Loss Team - The Loss Team helps support those at WIS who are facing the recent death of a family member. The B.I.O.N.I.C. team knows that the following weeks after a death can be a tough time as the reality of the loss sets in. The Loss Team delivers goodies and a card to let the student or staff member know that WIS cares and is thinking about them.
  3. The Prevent Bullying by Just Saying H.I. Team - This team helps students when someone is being mean or bullying them. The team helps make WIS more welcoming. The H. stands for Help and the I stands for initiate contact. The team members are working to help educate the school about standing up to bullying to help it end.


The B.I.O.N.I.C. Club meets once a month on a Friday before school from 7:30 a.m. - 8:00 a.m and also does activities during the school day. Our first meeting will be Friday, September 17th at 7:30 a.m. If you would like to sign-up for the B.I.O.N.I.C. club, please fill out the Google Form. If you have any questions about this great club, please reach out to Mrs. Hurst.

CHS Cheer Camp

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Chesterton Basketball Club

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Title I Night

Westchester Intermediate School is now a Schoolwide Title I school. With this in mind, we will be holding our annual Title I meeting for parents on Monday, September 27, 2021, from 6:00 to 7:30 p.m.


The Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) requires that each Title I School hold an annual Title I meeting for the purpose of: informing families of your schools participation

in Title I, explaining the requirements of Title I, and explaining the rights of parents/families to be involved.


We appreciate your attendance. Each student will choose a book from an abundance of books at the end of the presentation to add to his or her personal library at home.

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Panorama Survey Parent Information

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Skyward Family Access Quick Guide

Need some help in navigating your Skyward Parent Portal? Here is a Quick Guide with helpful videos attached to guide parents in familiarizing and utilizing Skyward.

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Nurse Tina's Note

Dear Parent/Guardians,


Starting soon, Health Services at WIS will be conducting Vision and Hearing screenings. All 5th grade students and new incoming 6th grade students, according to Indiana Law are required to have their vision checked. Hearing testing will only be performed on 5th and 6th grade students that are new to Duneland School Corporation.


We are asking that if your student wears glasses that they have them on their person daily so that there will be no delay in getting their testing completed. If you have any questions, please contact WIS School Nurse, Tina Sosby, R.N. at 219-983-3710 or via email at

tsosby@duneland.K12.in.us.

Voluntary COVID Vaccine Clinic available at Chesterton High School on Sept. 28

The Duneland School Corporation will host a voluntary vaccination clinic at Chesterton High School on September 28 from 2:30 – 4:30 p.m. for students, parents and staff members.

Vaccines will be administered by the Porter County Health Department in the CHS Fieldhouse. Vaccinations will include Pfizer and Moderna vaccines. Below is a link to the Parent consent form for students under the age of 18.

Consent Form for COVID-19 Vaccination

Download and complete this consent for your student to receive the vaccination.

DSC COVID-19 Response Plan - Level Change

On Wednesday, Governor Holcomb released Executive Order 21-24 which directed the Indiana State Department of Health (ISDH) to modify quarantine requirements for K-12 schools who mandate masks. The new guidelines indicate that when all individuals are masked, students and staff who are close contacts of a COVID-19 positive individual do not need to be quarantined unless experiencing symptoms. Instead, close contacts will monitor themselves for symptoms for 14 days while they continue to attend school.


Reducing the number of quarantines is essential to preserving 5-day per week, in-person learning and co- and extra-curricular activities during the pandemic. Since school started, over 450 students have been in quarantine (3,600+ days of missed school). At this pace, DSC will quarantine more than 4,800 students this year (38,000+ days of missed school).


In an effort to keep schools open and minimize learning disruptions related to mandated quarantine rules, the Duneland School Corporation will move to the “Quarantine Caution” level in the DSC COVID-19 Response Plan and require masks indoors, regardless of vaccination status for all students, staff and visitors, effective Tuesday, September 7, 2021. The goal will be to remove the mask requirement as soon as it is plausible to do so.


This change follows an increase in positive COVID-19 cases in the school community and a significant increase in the number of students placed in quarantine. DSC schools are required to follow quarantine protocols established by the ISDH as outlined in the Governor’s executive order. By requiring masks, DSC looks to eliminate quarantines which will increase the likelihood of preserving 5-day per week, in-person learning and co- and extra-curricular activities during the pandemic.


Staff will provide students opportunities, as is allowed by state health protocols, to remove masks at appropriate times when eating, when 6-feet of social distancing is possible and while outdoors, as well as when participating in athletics.


The DSC COVID-19 Response Plan will remain a fluid document and can and will be changed as new information becomes available during the pandemic. DSC administration will continue to consult with Porter County Health Department, monitor active cases and adjust protocols as necessary.

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NorthShore Clinic

Consent paperwork needs to be completed prior to an office visit. The paperwork is attached and can be completed prior to the visit to save time. If you choose this option, the consent paperwork needs to be on file beforehand. If returning paperwork via email, please send to: Shawn Kroft, skroft@northshorehealth.org.

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Help us Nominate WIS Teachers of Excellence today!

Attention parents! Help recognize Teachers of Excellence by nominating a Westchester staff member today. Kenneth J. Allen Law Group is supporting Northwest Indiana teachers who go above and beyond for their students by honoring their outstanding contributions to education. To learn more about the educators who are Teachers of Excellence, or if you know of someone who should be recognized as a Teacher of Excellence, please nominate her or him by clicking here.

Parent Observer Account

Parents are encouraged to set up their Canvas observer accounts to monitor their students' progress.


Parents can click this link to view how to set up their Parent Observer Account


Link to the Canvas Log In

WIS PTO

If you are interested in helping with the WIS PTO please visit our Facebook page to let us know. The Facebook page is also a great place to find out the happenings of the WIS PTO:

https://www.facebook.com/westchesterPTO

Job Opportunities in Duneland

The Duneland School Corporation is seeking candidates for the following positions:


CHILD NUTRITION

Child Nutrition associates provide nutrition services to students and staff. Benefit-eligible positions available. Apply online at Click to apply online


TRANSPORTATION

Duneland School Corporation Transportation positions (Bus Drivers, Sub Bus Drivers) require eligible persons to operate all school vehicles or (Sub Bus Aides) to assist in the transportation of all special students needing additional attention. These positions are highly responsible roles in transporting and dealing with students and staff on a regular basis. Transportation personnel interact with individuals both inside and outside of the corporation and therefore, must have the ability to present a professional and organized image at all times. Benefit-eligible positions available. Click to apply online


CUSTODIAL

Duneland School Corporation Custodians are required to clean and sanitize all corporation facilities. This position has a highly responsible role in providing custodial services and dealing with students and staff on a regular basis. Custodians interact with individuals both inside and outside the corporation and therefore, must have the ability to present a professional and organized image at all times. Custodians may be required to work in other Duneland School Corporation facilities. Benefit-eligible positions available. Click to apply online


SUBSTITUTE TEACHERS

Seeking substitute teachers for all grade levels. To apply for a substitute teaching position, please apply in person at the Duneland Administration Center, 601 W Morgan Ave. in Chesterton to complete an application.