The Mather Memo

January 2022 Edition

Welcome Back!

I wish a very happy new year to our whole Mather family.

The recent cancellation of classes can bring up many emotions and concerns. Ultimately, I want to first say that I am excited to welcome your students back to the building. I am also happy that this opportunity has created a dialogue about the safety of our students, our first priority.


With that in mind, I am asking everyone at Mather to re-commit to the following safety expectations. It is truly a community effort to keep one another safe.


1.) Wear an appropriate face covering over the nose and mouth at all times, except when eating or drinking.

2.) Stay home when you are sick

3.) Get tested if you have COVID symptoms

4.) Report positive COVID results to CPS at cps.edu/covidresults. This helps get the student's absence excused, communicates with the school/teachers, and helps with contact tracing.

5.) Strongly consider signing up for weekly COVID testing at Mather and getting vaccinated/boosted.


I also encourage students to focus on what they can control: the semester ends on January 27th. Students should make every effort to have their grades reflect their best effort this semester. Any students who completed/made up work during class cancellation should turn it in to their teachers. In addition, teachers have been asked to limit the amount of new content taught this semester and focus on reviewing previously learned concepts.

Please remind students to be on time to school with enough time to get through security checks to be in their class by 8 AM.


Encourage your student to reach out if they need support: we have both academic and social-emotional supports available here at Mather. I know that this has been a hard year on a lot of our community members. We are working hard to support your students and provide them with an excellent education.

As always, thank you for your partnership.

Mather Calendar

January 17 - No School, Martin Luther King Jr Observance

January 20, MHS Law Clinic (see flyer) 3:30 - 5:00 pm

January 25 - 27 - Final Exams (special schedule)

January 28 - School Improvement Day - No student attendance

January 31 - 2nd Semester begins

February 2nd - 9th and 10th grade Report Card Pick up - 5pm - 7pm

February 3rd - 11th and 12th grade report card pick up - 5:00 pm - 7:00 pm


Weekly Covid takes place at school for all students and staff on Wednesday from 1:00 - 3:30 pm

Final Exams are Coming Up!

The first semester ends Thursday, January 27th. There is no school for students on Friday, January 28th (it is an institute day).

Final exams are Tuesday, January 25th (periods 1, 3, 5, 7) and Wednesday, January 26th (periods 2, 4, 6, 8). Please encourage your student to start preparing for these exams. Other important tips for students: getting 8 hours of sleep and eating breakfast on exam days.

If students need academic support, please remind them that we offer tutoring Mon-Thursday after school!

Big picture

Tutoring Available for all Students

Tutoring is available for all students!

Monday - Thursday

3:30pm - 4:30pm

Room 432


AP Tutoring (for all AP students)

Tuesday & Thursday

AM: 7:00 am - 7:50 am

PM: 3:15pm - 4:15 pm

Mather Free Legal Clinic - THIS THURSDAY

The Chicago Law and Education Foundation, partnered with Mather High School, will provide free legal services to students and their families every third Thursday of the month.


We start this week! Enter Door 1, and you will be directed to the Counseling Office

Date: Thursday, January 20, 2022

Time: 3:30 pm - 5:00 pm


Any questions? Please email: clefattorney@gmail.com


All inquiries welcome!

Sign your student up for COVID testing!

With COVID cases on the rise, it is more important now than ever to sign your student up for COVID testing. Testing occurs every Wednesday here at Mather from 1-3:15 PM. Students are excused from class to get tested.

Please help us protect our whole community!

Here is the link to sign up for and consent to testing:


CPS is partnering with Thermo Fisher Scientific and Color Health to provide all students with COVID-19 testing beginning September 1, 2021 for the school year through the ReadyCheckGo™ testing program.


Please follow this link https://home.color.com/covid/sign-up/start?partner=tf-mat-609724-students

and complete the registration process. A parent or guardian must register any minor under 18 years old, and you’ll give a one-time consent and HIPAA authorization to share your child’s results with the school and district.


Testing is optional for students, except for unvaccinated and partially vaccinated student athletes. Testing will take place during regular school hours and results will be available in 24 to 48 hours. Color Health will follow up with you directly if your child receives a positive result.


For more information on testing with Thermo Fisher and Color, including self-swab testing and receiving results, head to their Support FAQs or call 888-603-1028. You may also email the CPS COVID-19 Testing Team at covidtestingcps@cps.edu.


In an effort to get more students signed up for testing, we will be holding a weekly raffle with prizes for registered students!

Vaccine Opportunities!

Another way to protect your student and the whole community is to get them vaccinated and boostered.

If students are "close contacts" of someone who has COVID, they do not need to quarantine unless they test positive.

There are many opportunities for vaccines.

1.) At-home vaccinations are now available for all Chicago residents age 12 and up! Get vaccinated for your health, and for a $100 gift card: call (312) 746-4835 or register online for an at-home vaccination timeslot.

2.) Roosevelt High School Vaccine Clinic: every Wednesday from 9 AM-1 PM. ($100 incenctive is also available here).


Click here for more information on vaccination opportunities


Even with this new COVID variant, people who are vaccinated are still much less likely to get COVID, be hospitalized due to COVID, and die of COVID. Here is some research:


https://www.nytimes.com/2022/01/11/briefing/omicron-deaths-vaccinated-vs-unvaccinated.html


https://www.chicago.gov/city/en/sites/covid19-vaccine/home/facts-about-covid19-vaccines.html

Free Masks from Alderman Vasquez's office (40th Ward)

From his office: Our office has created a form for neighbors to fill out in order to request their K95 masks (2 per neighbor). That way we can schedule pick up times, as well as which of our senior and disable neighbors need to have masks delivered.

If you would like to request a K95 mask for yourself or family that live in the ward, please click this link to do so!

40th Ward K95 Mask Request Form!


We recommend students upgrade to a K/KN95 mask for use at school. CPS should be sending us some for students soon. Here is research on these masks and the difference from regular cloth masks: https://www.nbcchicago.com/news/local/cloth-kn95-or-n95-masks-chicagos-top-doctor-explains-which-protects-best-from-omicron/2723757/

WE NEED PARENTS TO JOIN OUR LOCAL SCHOOL COUNCIL!

Local School Council Elections


Serving on a Local School Council (LSC) provides a unique opportunity to become engaged in your school community and play an active role in making policy decisions affecting your school. LSCs are critical to ensuring positive student outcomes and a dynamic school environment.


LSCs are responsible for:

  • Monitoring the school improvement plan— also known as their school’s CIWP.
  • Monitoring the school's budget and expenditures.
  • Evaluating their school’s principal annually, as well as selecting a new contract principal for their school or renewing the contract of their current principal.


Each LSC sets their own regular meeting schedules, which can be obtained directly from the school.


LSC members are elected every two years by parents, community members, and school staff. Members serve two-year terms, with the exception of high school student representatives, who serve one-year terms. The 2022 LSC elections will be held on Thursday, April 23, 2020, for high schools.


How to Apply


If you are a parent, community member, student, or teacher looking to get more involved with your school, we encourage you to consider running in your school’s LSC election. The application window for the 2020 LSC elections opens on December 2, 2019. To apply, candidates must download and fill out the application forms (or pick them up from Mather Counseling office) and return them with two forms of identification to Mather High School by March 5, 2020 at 3:00 p.m.


Parents and community members have the option to file a Form 4-20 Candidate Statement, school staff candidates must file a Form 5-20 School Staff Candidate Information Form and high school student candidates must file a Form 6-20 Student Candidate Information Form