WHAT'S UP AT LINCOLN
Weekly Newsletter and Announcements
A Message from Principal Gordon
Dear Lincoln Families,
There was a lot of good feedback regarding Parent-Teacher Conferences. Thank you for attending our first virtual conferences!
On another note, reluctantly and sadly I have made the decision that Lincoln will not host a social distanced Halloween celebration. As the Covid-19 numbers increase, it is more important, in my opinion, for us to be safe. With that being said, we would love to see pictures of the kids in their costumes and fall wear. Please send a picture to the Lincoln Office, firstname.lastname@example.org, for us to see those costumes or fall wear!
Last but not least, please join me in recognizing and giving a huge round of applause to Mr. Childress and Mrs. Smith. These two educators won the Award of Meritorious Service in the category of Classroom Teacher (Teacher of the Year). This is a statewide honor that you are nominated for and it is not automatically given. We are so lucky to have them both here supporting our students and staff. You will find their staff spotlights below!
Dates to Remember:
Nov 3 - No School (Election Day)
Nov 4 - Spanish Immersion Meeting (3pm-4pm)
Nov 25 - 27 - Thanksgiving Break
Dec 23 - Half Day of School (school dismissed at 11am)
Dec 24 - Jan 8 - Winter Break
Marvin Childress (better know as Mr. C) is currently serving as the student support specialist at Lincoln. He previously taught at the school for 13 years. (Click here for his "We Are D97" profile.)
Excerpts from Marvin's nomination:
"Through programs and initiatives such as Lincoln’s Chess Club and the Lincoln Tech Club (which was started this winter by a group of his students), Marvin empowers his students to always believe in themselves and to have a positive impact on others ... Thanks to his efforts, his students learned how to be critical, analytical and abstract thinkers and helped staff members and students learn about the benefits of technology both in and out of the classroom."
"Marvin has also been masterful in establishing and maintaining positive, productive relationships. He is beloved by everyone he comes in contact with, and has created a close, tight-knit network of support that consists of students, staff members and parents/guardians who work together to help the children he teaches achieve their goals and realize their dreams. Marvin is an exemplary ambassador for District 97 and the Oak Park community. He is a role model and community builder. He represents the very best of who we are as a district, and what we aspire to be."
Mrs. Smith is a fifth-grade Spanish Immersion Teacher at Lincoln. She is currently in her 11th year of teaching.
Excerpts from Elizabeth's nomination:
"Ms. Smith is an expert in her subjects and finds ways to bring that knowledge to all students ... She is able to meet the needs of all students by providing small group instruction for those who need it and also encouraging students to accelerate their learning when she sees that they are ready for more. She pushes her students to do and learn more, often teaching three grade levels of material. This has helped many students build confidence in their math abilities to the point where they love math for the first time in their education. Ms. Smith goes out her way to meet with students who miss school for special circumstances."
"Ms. Smith’s dedication to the children of Oak Park extends beyond the students she has in class. She serves as the fifth grade team leader and supports the other grade level teachers. She is a champion of the Spanish Immersion program at all grade levels and tirelessly works to ensure its success. She advocates for the program by advising parents and keeping records of success. As a unique program, much of the district curriculum requires translations, which she works closely with her colleagues to make happen. For the past 10 years, Ms. Smith has worked to organize 'El Gran Fandango.' For many students this celebration of Spanish-speaking language and culture is the highlight of the school year."
Library Check out at Lincoln
District 97 Information
Next Meal D97 Meal Distribution: Tuesday, Oct. 27
Meals will be provided free of cost this fall to any District 97 student in need. Each bag of food will contain five breakfasts and five lunches.
Meal distributions will be held every Tuesday, from 10:30 a.m. to 1 p.m., at Longfellow Elementary School (for Julian and feeder schools), 715 S. Highland Ave., and Brooks Middle School (for Brooks and feeder schools), 325 S. Kenilworth Ave.
Stamped' Family and Community Discussions
District 97 students, families and community members are invited to participate in a three-session discussion on the book Stamped by Jason Reynolds and Dr. Ibram X. Kendi. Attendees will join together for a presentation followed by discussions in separate breakout rooms.
In conjunction with Brooks and Julian middle schools' fall curriculum read, the sessions will follow along with the chapters being read by students and staff. Breakout sessions will be led by students from Dominican University, who will follow a peace circle format and draw on the Stamped Educator's Guide.
Events will be held:
- Tuesday, Nov. 17 - 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. (click here to register)
- Tuesday, Dec. 1 - 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. (click here to register)
These sessions are made possible with the support of: District 97 staff; Oak Park and River Forest School District 200; the Oak Park Public Library; the E-Team of Oak Park; and Dominican University’s Truth, Racial Healing, and Transformation (TRHT) group.
Continued Social-Emotional Wellness Check-Ins for Students
District 97 school psychologists and nurses have collaborated to offer access to virtual mental health wellness checks at each school this fall. Parents may sign up children for 25-minute Telehealth sessions where they can access an open ear for their sources of stress and learn self-care and coping strategies. Students may attend up to three sessions per trimester and may then be referred for other school-based supports if needed.
To sign up or learn more about these services, please visit https://bit.ly/3m3Xece.
If your child is experiencing an immediate mental health crisis, please do not use this service and instead call the Thrive 24-Hour Crisis Hotline at 708-383-7500. You may also refer to this local resource guide created by the Community Mental Health Board of the Oak Park Township.
Halloween Information for District 97 Families
Our goal in District 97 is to create a positive learning environment where all students, staff and families feel a sense of belonging. In that spirit, we have put together information and resources for regarding culturally-sensitive Halloween costumes. We appreciate families being proactive with their children in making thoughtful costume choices. Click here for more information >
Village of Oak Park: Hours for Trick-or-Treating
Official trick-or-treating hours will be 1 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. this year in Oak Park as public health officials offer guidelines and recommendations on how to celebrate as safely as possible with COVID-19 still present in the community. Guidelines issued by the Illinois Department of Public Health and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention share a common theme - reducing close contact with those outside of a person's household, which officials say is essential to reducing the risk of contracting or spreading COVID-19. Local officials also are urging trick-or-treaters to respect the properties of those who do not wish to participate in the traditional ritual of handing out candy. More information is at www.oak-park.us/halloween.
"Mindful Middle-Schoolers" Program
The Community Mental Health Board of Oak Park Township, Oak Park Elementary School District 97, and DePaul University’s Community Counseling Center have partnered to deliver a vast array of educational and therapeutic services to staff, families, and youth through the “Mindful Middle-Schoolers Program.” Below is a list of upcoming VIRTUAL talks, which will be held via Zoom. Registration via the Eventbrite links below is requested. Once you register, a link will be emailed to you four hours prior to the start of each event.
- Thursday, October 29: Strategies to Support Executive Functioning and Self-Regulation https://www.eventbrite.com/e/strategies-to-support-executive-functioning-and-self-regulation-in-youth-tickets-124164006887
- Wednesday, November 4: Mindfulness-Based Strategies and Their Applications in Academic and Home Environments https://www.eventbrite.com/e/mindfulness-based-strategies-in-academic-and-home-settings-tickets-124164791233
- Thursday, November 12: Technology and Mental Health: Strategies to Promote Mindful Digital Citizenship https://www.eventbrite.com/e/technology-and-mental-health-strategies-to-promote-mindful-tech-use-tickets-124165523423
- Wednesday, November 18: Understanding Depression in Youth and Strategies for Treatment and Support https://www.eventbrite.com/e/understanding-depression-in-youth-and-strategies-for-treatment-and-support-tickets-124167264631
- Tuesday, December 1: LGBTQ Youth: Understanding and Supporting Mental Health and Well-Being https://www.eventbrite.com/e/lgbtq-youth-understanding-and-supporting-mental-health-and-well-being-tickets-124167752089
- Wednesday, December 9: Understanding Anxiety in Youth and Strategies for Treatment and Support https://www.eventbrite.com/e/understanding-anxiety-in-youth-and-strategies-for-treatment-and-support-tickets-124168632723
Staff Shout Outs
Sra. Jacobo has turned this class around under the most challenging of circumstances. She is a pro and she deserves a super shout out for her dedication, professionalism and talent. I can't thank you enough for giving my son the gift of reading.
- Amina Najib
Ms. Rudin continues to make the best of e-learning. Her students are engaged, having fun (we love hearing the laughter), and working very hard. She constantly builds classroom community--- from the friendly morning meetings (everyone gets their own 'hello'), to end of the day break out rooms for chatting, to being real about being kicked off Zoom. We feel so grateful to have her teaching our son. Thanks for all you do, Ms. Rudin!
- Klette Family
Mrs. Gearhart is always able to talk my daughter & I through the abundance of everyday technical challenges we face. She's cool headed & a great problem solver!
- Jan Tendick
Sra. Jacobo enthusiastically engages students in their learning and provides them with opportunities to talk with one another. We appreciate everything she is doing!
- Gudelia Lopez
Teaching 1st Graders can’t be easy especially if you have a class filled with little active bodies but strong personalities. Ms. Cooper is just incredible in keeping these kids stimulated, engaged and excited to learn. We really appreciate all the personal emails and special birthday card drop off. Big SHOUT OUT. Thank you
- Middel Family
We just heard from our child's remote learning facilitators during the week - Ms. Logan is proactive in communicating when there is a daily schedule change and gives plenty of notice. The counselors gave her glowing reviews and were appreciative of her collaboration which ultimately benefits our daughter. Ms. Logan, thank you for going the extra mile!!
- Andrea Dwyer
Staff Shout Out
Please click here to let us know and we will feature them in the next newsletter.
How Do I Access Technology Support During Remote Learning?
Technical support will be available from school and district technology staff by accessing the Help Desk through email, email@example.com. When an email is submitted, a Help Desk ticket is created and assigned to technology staff, who will be working throughout the day to address technology concerns. Our technology team can support District 97 devices and student online programs.
Principal and Assistant Principal Appreciation Month
- Joanne Lowry and LeeAnn Roskopf