Northwood Weekly Bulletin
Northwood Jr. High School- Month of March 2020
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Mission and Vision at Northwood / Misión y Visión en Northwood
As a unified community we will proactively engage students, staff, and families in creating an environment that is supportive of the academic, emotional, and social success of all students.
VisionOur vision at Northwood is to empower all students to be successful members of a global society by fostering their academic, emotional, and social growth.
Como comunidad unificada, involucraremos de manera proactiva a los estudiantes, el personal y las familias en la creación de un entorno que apoye el éxito académico, emocional y social de todos los estudiantes.
Nuestra visión en Northwood es capacitar a todos los estudiantes para que sean miembros exitosos de una sociedad global fomentando su crecimiento académico, emocional y social.
D112 COVID19 UPDATE March 16
“The purpose of human life is to serve, and to show compassion and the will to help others.” – Albert Schweitzer
Monday, March 16, 2020
Dear North Shore School District 112 Parents & Community,
What an incredibly strange set of events and changing landscape of what “normal” means in our state, nation, and world. The good news is that in District 112, we’ve been focused on the following four priorities in this evolving pandemic crisis:
- Priority one - feed our families and children
- Priority two - account for the extended safety, health, and welfare of our 4500 students and staff
- Priority three - communicate clearly
- Priority four - e-Learning
With this communication, I’m sharing detailed information with you about our four pandemic preparation priorities. This is a very long email message - please read it through completely. Please know that this situation has caused changes by the hour -- there will be ongoing changes including what I am writing here. The theme of this crisis is flexibility and patience.
Priority one - feed our families and children
All children and youth under the age of 18 may pick up “grab and go” breakfast and lunch meals at Oak Terrace School, outside door C-3 during ‘typical school days’ from 10-11 am. Here is the flyer with information in both English and Spanish. The Moraine Township Food Pantry will be handling non-school day distribution. Given social distance parameters issued by the Illinois Department of Public Health, anyone picking up meals must drive up (preferred) or walk up; parents, students & caregivers are not allowed in the building to pick up food. Students may come on their own or with a parent or caregiver to pick up meals, but children must be present for meals to be given out.
Priority two - account for the extended safety, health, and welfare of our 4500
- Our 550 employees are dealing with the unknown with their own families. It’s important that we all take a deep breath and support one another during this time. Please continue to show patience and respect as we tread through this extended time away from school and our normal routines. Please also continue to understand that the email response will be delayed during this time.
- We’ve had inquiries about the end of the school year and make-up days. It’s unknown what exactly the district will be required to make-up at this time. North Shore School District closed school on 3/13 and 3/16 before the Governor closed all schools in Illinois from 3/17-3/30. The students were supposed to be off on 3/19 anyway. Fortunately, our spring break was scheduled for 3/23-3/27 anyway.
- 3/13 and 3/16 will be considered emergency days per ISBE as of today. Currently we believe that those two days will be made-up on June 5th and 8th. We do not know what ISBE will require us to make up given that North Shore Schools are closed until April 13. However, that is all tentative based on the evolving communication from the Governor and President. Our thoughts at this time are that we may need to use all of the emergency days through June 11.
- While we are closed, all NSSD 112 employees will be paid, and their benefits will stay intact.
- Our buildings are closed to visitors, students, and parents except for device pickup on Tuesday, March 17 from 2:00-4:00 p.m.
- All staff will work from home. The following staff will be onsite if they are healthy and comfortable to come into work.
- Mike Lubelfeld, Monica Schroeder, Kevin Liebe, and Ginger Brown or Chris Wildman (rotating between the two) will be onsite.
- Maintenance and custodians will be onsite.
General Public Service Announcement
- As you know, from scientific news reports, the number of COVID-19 cases has grown exponentially in our state over the past week. Please see the CDC for how to protect your family.
Priority three - communicate clearly
Communication regarding the District 112 response to COVID 19 can be found at www.nssd112.org/healthtips. The public is encouraged to keep up with all District 112 news and updates by visiting www.nssd112.org, liking District 112 on Facebook, and/or following @nssd112 on Twitter. Parents, staff and community members, can also download the District 112 mobile app for instant notifications.
- Elementary report cards have been printed and will be mailed to parents on Tuesday afternoon. We appreciate all of the staff who have pulled together to get this completed for families in such a timely manner with everything that’s going on. Excellent teamwork!
- As you are aware, parent-teacher conferences are scheduled to begin on March 19th from 3:30-8:00 p.m. and March 20th from 8:00 a.m. to noon. Please note that these conferences will be conducted via phone and that number will come up as unknown (due to privacy). In addition, group conferences may be conducted via a phone conference through Google Hangouts Meet. If you would like to speak with a specialist or a specials teacher (PE, art, music, etc.), please email them directly to set up a conference time.
- There are many staff who are taking care of their families at home, sick family members, or they too may be feeling under the weather. With that in mind, we are allowing greater flexibility for when conferences may be conducted if a teacher cannot make the currently scheduled time. If a staff member needs to reschedule a conference, they will let parents know and they will reschedule with parents directly. The rescheduled conferences timeline has been extended, now may occur between March 19-April 13.
- During your telephone conference, we ask that you please limit conversation topics to your child’s progress to date. We know you are concerned and interested in the e-learning that is referenced in this letter. The District communications will detail information for the “extension of learning”, “new learning” and “e-learning” during this prolonged closure.
Priority four - E-Learning
What can students do now? Learning activities and digital resources can be accessed in this Google drive folder and they can also be accessed on our District website.
We have expedited our plan from March 30, as earlier noted, to later this week. As soon as possible, we will release a longer-term plan for our teachers, students, and families. This will include an online, self-paced program, Educere, for students in grades 1-8. Students in the Dual Language Program, grades K-5, will also be able to use Imagine Learning to access content in Spanish and English. All Kindergarten will use Imagine Learning for Language Arts and Mathematics content. For students who receive special education services and require an alternative ELearning plan, parents will receive additional communication later this week.
Chromebooks and iPads:
- Grades 3-8: For the activities, your child will need access to his/her Chromebook.
- Grades K-2: For the activities, your child will need access to his/her iPad. We will distribute iPads at each K-5 school Tuesday, March 17th from 2:00-4:00pm. (We have expedited the iPad filtering software and they are safe to go out now)
Comcast is offering free internet for low-income families for two months. Please see here for more information. We are also distributing “hot spots” to the families in our school system who need them. If you need further support with internet service at your home, please reach out to your child’s principal.
Final comments (thank you for reading through all of this)
Thank you for allowing us the space to do this work and prepare for the unexpected. Thank you for understanding that the varied needs of 4000 students and 550 staff require new ways of thinking, leading, and acting. Thank you in advance for supporting new and inventive ways of continuing your children’s education during this Pandemic.
The outpouring of requests for people to help with volunteer offers is much appreciated and also is overwhelming. At present, we do not need any volunteers. I will be sending you updates on a regular basis. If your school-issued technology device breaks or needs attention, send an email to email@example.com
For clarity, here is the learning plan:
- March 16-March 19 - E-Learning Planning & Communication days for staff & administrators
- March 20-March 27 - is scheduled as Spring Break; we will have self-paced learning options for our students and families during Spring Break
- The Governor’s Executive Order has closed all schools in IL from
March 17-March 30 -designated “Act of God” Days and they will not have to be made up. See ISBE notice for more details
- March 31-April 13 - NSSD 112 closed - days not yet defined yet by ISBE
I ask that you keep perspective on all of this. We will be staffing buildings and the District office with very limited staff presence. Be patient in this time of change. Focus on caring for your family and self. Your health above all is most important to us.
Michael Lubelfeld, Ed.D.
Superintendent of Schools