October 23rd

Twitter Highlights: Week 9

Please click on the above link to see highlights from this past week. We are working to create a positive learning environment that is equitable, inclusive and focused on the whole child. No need to have a twitter account to view!

Brooks News to Know

Parent-Teacher Conference Feedback

Please complete this form to provide us with your feedback. Thank you for joining us last week at Parent-Teacher Conferences!

Updating Family Contact Information

If you have a change in your phone or email contact information, please use this form to send us your updated contact information.

Sex, Drugs & SnapChat Workshop

Impact and OPRFHS Parent Connection join forces to bring you and your student(s) an engaging and interactive workshop to help you learn how to encourage your student to make healthy choices.

Workshop is on Wednesday, November 8th from 6:30pm to 8:30pm in OPRFHS 2nd Floor Cafe.

Please RSVP by 11/1 to Latonia Jackson at 708-434-3008 or ljackson@oprfhs.org Childcare and translations are available by request only, 1 week prior to the event.

Here is a flyer with all the information.

For Current 8th Grade Families - OPRFHS Testing Information

The OPRF placement test will be offered on Saturday, December 2nd and Saturday, December 9th. The high school will notify families in November about their assigned testing date and time. Please be on the look out for this communication from OPRF.

Below is information about the testing process and what tests will be administered:

STAR Math and Reading Screeners. 34-item online assessments that replaces the EXPLORE test used in prior years. Star assessments adapt as students respond to questions. A correct answer to question 1, for example, will lead to a slightly more challenging item for question 2. An incorrect answer to question 2 would lead to a slightly easier problem for #3. We believe these assessments have advantages over the older, non-adaptive EXPLORE tests in providing information about your child's strengths and needs. They will also take approximately half the time to administer compared to EXPLORE.

Here is a website for a parent guide to the STAR Assessments:

  • OPRFHS math test, including supplemental math items from retired PLAN and ACT tests. These items will focus on advanced algebra and geometry concepts that are not included on the Star math test.

Here is a website with sample test items:

  • Spanish, French, and Italian language tests. Students currently enrolled in Spanish, French, or Italian who intend to continue in the same language in high school will also take a world language placement test for that language. No language test is required for students currently enrolled in German language classes, students not currently enrolled in a language class, and students who intend to switch to a new language in high school.

Please let Ms. Klein​ know if you have any questions or visit the OPRF website at:


For Current 7th Grade Families: Springfield Trip and Washington D.C Trip Information

I am excited to announce that I am the Program Leader for the 2018 Springfield and Washington, DC trips.

  • Springfield - Friday, April 20, 2018
    • For those of you who would like to take advantage of the EARLY REGISTRATION DISCOUNT by November 15, you will ONLY pay $49 to register.
    • Refer to Brooks Group #149246
  • Washington, DC - October 8-10, 2018 (Columbus Day Weekend)
    • For those of you who would like to take advantage of the EARLY REGISTRATION DISCOUNT by November 17, you will ONLY pay $49 to register ($50 savings).

    • Refer to Brooks Group #156121

I would like to share details about both trips and answer any questions that you may have. Please join me for a parent meeting on:

  • Wednesday, November 1 at 6:30pm in the Brooks Commons (attached Springfield and DC invites)
  • You will also receive information packets in the mail for both trips from WorldStrides. Please DO NOT discard the envelopes.
You can either register online at WorldStrides OR you can call WorldStrides directly (800-468-5899)

  • Payment arrangements are available.
  • If you are in need of financial assistance, you may also reach out to WorldStrides to inquire about their Flag Scholarship.

If you have questions, please email Janorisè Robinson.

Thank you!

Janorisè Robinson

Parent Volunteer & Program Leader



Important Information from Middle School Librarians

We are purchasing Gale databases for research and information-gathering for the 2017-18 school year.

Here is a letter with more specific information provided by our middle school Librarians.

You can access additional information about Gale’s In Context Suite by visiting http://www.gale.com/databases/in-context. If you have comments, questions or concerns about these resources, please contact your child’s teacher librarian.

New PBIS Coach Joining Brooks and Julian Middle Schools

I am pleased to share that Lauren Olson has accepted the position of PBIS Middle School Coach. She will begin in November when she returns from her maternity leave.

Lauren began her education career as a member of Chicago Teaching Fellows and taught high school Spanish and Sociology in Chicago. She then served as a dean of students at Rowe Elementary School (K-8) developing systems for school culture and structures for social emotional learning. She transitioned to District 97 where she has served as a social worker at Whittier Elementary School for the past two years. She has a Masters in Education, Social Work, and is currently pursuing her Masters in Educational Leadership. With Lauren’s varied experiences, we believe Lauren will add value to the school culture and climate work that has already started at Brooks and Julian Middle Schools.

In her role as PBIS Middle School Coach, Lauren will provide leadership in the development and monitoring of universal (school-wide and classroom) systems and practices to promote the engagement of all students. She is also responsible for building the capacity of our middle school staff by providing insight into the function of student behavior and providing professional development and coaching on behavioral strategies and techniques that support students’ behavioral success.

Lauren will work collaboratively with Brooks and Julian Middle School principals and Building Leadership Teams to lead the development and monitoring a of a restorative school culture and climate. She will also work closely with the Instructional Coaches, IB Coordinators, and other appropriate staff to develop structures and provide professional learning that supports a well-rounded instructional core. She will also collaborate with our elementary PBIS school-based coaches to insure PBIS K-8 alignment .

Please join me in welcoming Lauren to Brooks and Julian Middle Schools!

Author - Maggie Stiefvater

Maggie Stiefvater will be reading and signing her new book at the Magic Tree on October 23 at 6pm. Please let your student know about this event, and visit if you would like!

October is Anti-Bullying/Upstander Month

Monday, October 2, we will have Kindness in Chalk as our kick-off activity for October, Bullying Prevention and Awareness Month. Please visit this link to learn more about the event. Kindness in Chalk is our first event in a yearlong Anti-Bullying/Upstander campaign. Every week during the month of October we have events planned.

Here are some pictures from the Kindness in Chalk: click here to see.

October 10th - Upstander Pledge and Announce Anti-Bully/Upstander Poster Competition. Students will have until 10/23/2017 to submit an entry. Students will create a visual message to promote anti-bullying message and kindness.

- We support those who have been hurt or harmed

- We treat others with kindness

- We will be more accepting of people’s differences

- We will help include those who are left out

October 16th - Kindness Buckets: We will invite students to fill the bucket with compliments for students and staff throughout our building. We plan to deliver the drops of kindness during Spirit Week, on 10/24/2017.

October 25th - Cyberbully Assembly

Spirit Week, 10/23-10/27

Monday - Dress up as your favorite superhero (***no weapons***)

Tuesday – Wear your favorite 70’s gear and Spread Peace and Love

Wednesday – Unity Day Wear Orange

Thursday - Wear your favorite sports team attire

Friday - Brooks Spirit Day – Wear Blue and White or Brooks gear

Spirit Wear

Spirit Wear is Here!

Show your Eagles Pride with fantastic spirit wear from the GBMS PTO.

Deadline for orders is Friday, October 27, 2017.

All items are available in youth and adult sizes. Here is flyer to see what they look like.

All orders will arrive mid-November and will be distributed during lunch periods.

Two easy ways to order:

1) Online at https://brookseagles.itemorder.com/

2) Complete order form and have your child turn in, along with payment, to their Advisory Teacher

Questions: Contact Cat Phillips at kccat221@yahoo.com

Halloween, Tuesday October 31st

Halloween Costume: On Tuesday, 10/31 we ask students to turn in a food item or $1 to your first period teacher to support the Service Club Food Drive and to earn the privilege to dress up for Halloween.

Please be mindful that we strongly discourage the wearing of costumes for Halloween that stereotype, demean or make fun of other people - especially of other cultures. Please talk with your students about the importance of respecting others. Students cannot wear anything that covers their face nor can they have "props" that look like a weapon.

8th Grade Transition Tour at Oak Park River Forest High School. 8th Graders will be touring the high school on Tuesday, 10/31 in the morning. Due to the visit to the high school, we recommend that 8th graders not dress up for Halloween.

Interested in ordering a Yearbook?

Please place orders for 2017-2018 yearbooks online here.

Brooks Facebook Group

This group provides a forum for reciprocal communication between the school, parents, students and the larger community

Please view posts or request to join so you can create or respond to posts!

Let's Talk - Gwendolyn Brooks Middle School

District 97 has invested in a resource called Let’s Talk that students, faculty, staff, parents/guardians and community members can use to communicate with us about our departments and services, and share feedback on important issues and topics that will shape the future of our schools and help the children we serve realize their full potential.

Here is the direct link to Brooks Let's Talk to share your question, comment, question, concern or compliment with us. We look forward to hearing from you!

You can also access additional information about the system by visiting - http://www.op97.org/news/1443643/district-97-launches-let-s-talk-communication-system.

Recognizing Staff who Make a Difference

If you or your student would like to recognize any staff member (a teacher, a teacher assistant, social worker, librarian, front office staff, lunchroom staff, custodial staff or school administrator) please take a moment to complete this form.

Thank you to those who have completed this form to recognize a GBMS staff member. All individuals receive a printed certificate highlighting your appreciation for their contributions!

Please be sure your background check has been completed if you'd like to volunteer to chaperone Field Trips

Parents must make an appointment for background checks. They can go to the district website, click Background Check Appointments under Quick Links to schedule an appointment. Here is the direct link for the remaining appointment slots through October 19th: http://www.signupgenius.com/go/5080b48a9ab22a0fd0-background

Breakfast and Lunch Menus for October

Clubs and Sports Information

click above to see open spreadsheet that has a tab for all SPORTS and tab for of all CLUBS offered at Brooks with sponsor email, dates, times and location details.


None hosted at Home this week!

Boys Basketball Try-Outs

All participants MUST complete the following forms located in the PE Office or linked below:

Boys Basketball Try-out Dates

October 20th 12:30 – 2:00pm

October 23rd 3:40 – 5:00pm

Please contact Coach Brown (kbrown@op97.org) or Coach Thigpen (tthigpen@op97.org) for any questions.

CLUB OPPORTUNITIES (can join anytime)

Each club meets weekly, unless otherwise notated below.


  • ORFF Ensemble from 8:00am to 8:50am in D104 (first meeting was on 9/18). Participation is open to all students - no audition required, but enrollment is limited to 40 students. Interested students can sign-up and pick up permission slips outside of the music room (D104). For additional information contact Mr. Carrillo - fcarrillo@op97.org. Still opportunity to join.
  • Ultimate Frisbee from 3:30pm to 4:40pm in 3rd floor gym (first meeting was on 9/11). If you have any questions, please email Ms. Dajani at rdajani@op97.org or Mr. Gillespie at mgillespie@op97.org.
  • Math Team from 3:30-4:30 in room B204 . The club will meet each week. Students of all abilities are welcome. Next meeting is on Monday, October 23rd. If you have any questions, please contact Mr. Kahn at skahn@op97.org.
  • Spoken Word from 3:30pm to 5:30 pm in room B205. If you have any questions, please email Mr. Lee at mlee@op97.org (moving meeting day from Tuesdays)


  • EcoEagles from 3:30pm to 4:30pm in room C302 (first meeting was on 8/29). If you have any questions, please email Ms. Stamp at lstamp@op97.org.
  • Chess Club from 3:30 to 4:45 in room B305 (first meeting was on 9/12). If you have any questions, please email Mr. Hausfeld at mhausfeld@op97.org.
  • Vex Robotics In-House League from 3:30 to 5 pm in room B302, 10/03-12/19 (no meeting 10/31, 11/21); Robot Rumble on 12/12 . You can learn more by viewing flyer or OPEF VexRobotics website. or if you have any questions, please email Ms. Pena at tpena@op97.org
  • Rainbow Tribe after school until 4:30 in 2nd floor conference room next to PE classroom. The next meeting is on Tuesday, October 23rd. Schedule and permission slip found here. If you have any questions, please email Ms. Olsen at jolsen@op97.org


  • Ultimate Frisbee from 3:30pm to 4:40pm in 3rd floor gym (first meeting was on 9/11). If you have any questions, please email Ms. Dajani at rdajani@op97.org or Mr. Gillespie at mgillespie@op97.org.
  • Best Buddies General Meeting on Wednesday, November 1st from 3:30pm to 4:30pm in Commons. If you have any questions, please email Ms. Beauprez or Ms. Touchette. Here is calendar of dates for all Best Buddies meetings.


  • Art Club First meeting will be on Thursday, October 5th from 3:30pm to 4:45pm in room D301. If you have any questions, please email Ms. Murray at kmurray@op97.org.
  • Spanish Club from 3:30 to 4:30pm in room B308 (first meeting was on 9/21). Meeting this week is on October 26th. The club meets every other week. If you have any questions please contact Mr. Lagioia at vlagioia@op97.org or Ms. Villalobos at cvillalobos@op97.org.
  • Yearbook Club from 3:30 to 4:30pm in room B202. The club meets 2nd and 4th Thursday of the month. The next meeting is October 26th. If you have any questions, please contact Ms. Marsha Turner-Reid at mturnerreid@op97.org


  • Service Club from 8am to 8:45am in room B209 (first meeting on 9/29). If you have any questions, please contact Ms. Walsh at swalsh@op97.org or Ms. Martinez at bmartiez@op97.org . We are collecting food for the Fall Food Drive. The food drive will run from October 2nd to October 30th. Please turn in food to your advisory teacher. Prize will be given to advisory with most food items collected!

Student Innovation Team

Calling all students interested in engaging further with technology at Brooks: we are now accepting applications for this year's Student InnovationTeam! The Student Innovation Team is a student-led team of 6th, 7th, and 8th grade students which will be designed by its members to support peers using technology at school to learn. You will have opportunities to help others with technology challenges, and learn more about the technology available to us at school. Further details are available in the application, which is available in the Media Center- stop by to get one or linked above! Completed applications should be given to Ms. Dean, Ms. Nelson, or Ms. Keith in the Media Center by Friday, November 4th.

Service Club - Fall Food Drive & Care Packages for Housing Forward

We are collecting food for the Fall Food Drive. The food drive will run from October 2nd to October 30th. Please turn in food to your advisory teacher. Prize will be given to the advisory with most food items collected!

Service Club is also collecting unused travel-size toiletries all year to make care packages for Housing Forward. Please send any donations to Ms. Walsh or Ms. Martínez.

District 97 Instrumental Music Festival

Wed, Nov. 8th @ OPRFHS Auditorium, 7 p.m.

This event will be the first concert of the year for all of our curricular bands and orchestras. This event also includes our band and orchestra students from Percy Julian Middle School. There will be rehearsals at OPRFHS on Monday, Nov. 6th (7th/8th Graders) and Wednesday, Nov. 8th (6th graders) prior to the evening concert. Both the online permission slip and/or hardcopy will be available soon! Please check concert attire requirements through your music director’s communication!

BRAVO Upcoming Events

Monster Mash Bash All School Halloween Dance is October 27 from 7pm-9pm - Tickets go on sale Monday, October 2 - Click Here for more info & to purchase tickets

Volunteer for Monster Mash Bash: click here
Disneys’ The Little Mermaid Performances are November 3 - 11 - Tickets are on Sale Now!

Get connected to PTO

PTO Information

When you registered your child, if you selected the option “No to Directory”, the school can not share your contact information with the PTO (Parent-Teacher Organization). If you'd like to subscribe to PTO Bulletin use link below: