The Central Scoop

June 4, 2021

From the Principal's Desk...

Dear Central Families,

Our end-of-the-year activities started this week and they have all been very successful. We are especially thankful to our amazing teachers for finding creative ways to end the year on a positive note for our students, while also maintaining many of our Central School traditions. For example, our kindergarten classes performed beautifully outside for parents as part of their end-of-the-year celebration. Under the guidance of our music teacher, Ms Jeanne Gierke, kindergartners sang songs that brought tears to all of our eyes. They also shared portfolios of their artwork with their parents. We are proud to say they are all more then ready for first grade!

We are looking forward to more celebrations next week. On Tuesday, June 8th we look forward to celebrating our graduating 4th graders. We will be holding many of our usual traditions for this day including the PTA's slideshow and yearbook signing party. This year, our 4th graders will also enjoy a dance party on the blacktop. We are all so proud of our 4th graders' successes and we know that they will continue to shine at Highcrest Middle School.

Next Thursday, we celebrate all of our students with an all-school live assembly on Zoom to share the last day of school together. We will sing our school song and watch a video montage that includes bright spots from this school year. During the assembly, we will also praise students who participated in a variety of school activities throughout the year including Reading Rally and Green Team. We are proud of everyone's accomplishments!

This is our last newsletter of the school year. On behalf of everyone at Central, we want to thank you for sharing your children with us this year. While this hasn't been a typical year, we hope that collectively we can all take great pride in the incredible perseverance, resilience, and strength that we have demonstrated as individuals and as a school community. We hope you have a safe, fun and memorable summer. We look forward to seeing everyone this fall when we expect to return to our full daily, in-person instruction!

With much gratitude and appreciation,

~ Becky & Taylor

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D39 Updates

Back to School Fall Planning

As we celebrate the end of this most unusual school year with pride and a tremendous sense of accomplishment, we look forward to the upcoming school year with eagerness and hope. With the start of the new school year next fall, we are planning for full in-person instruction and for a return to typical school hours.

The District 39 2021-2022 school year calendar is available online. Typical school hours for 2021-2022 school are as follows:

  • Wilmette Junior High School 7th-8th Grades 8:25-3:10

  • Highcrest Middle Schools 5th-6th Grades 8:50-3:35

  • Elementary Schools 1st-4th Grades and Kindergarten with KEEP39 8:35-3:15 (early dismal on Fridays at 2:15pm for all students, K-4)

  • Half-Day Kindergarten without KEEP 39 8:35-11:10

  • Early Childhood 8:45-11:05 (morning), 12:40-3:00 (afternoon), 8:45-2:10 (Full Day)

District 39 is planning for a return to full in-person instruction in the fall, with mitigation measures in place as directed by our local health department. Our D39 teams will continue to review and incorporate updated health and safety guidelines into our fall plans. We expect updates from the Cook County Department of Public Health (CCDPH) and the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) throughout the summer, and we will continue to keep families apprised as information becomes available. Please look for email updates from District 39 throughout the summer. If you believe your child may require special exception through a fully remote program and you have not already communicated that need to us, please contact Dr. Kristin Swanson.

Extended Day Programming in 2021-2022

We are excited to announce a return of after school programming and clubs for the 2020-2021 school year as well as some new additions to program offerings that will be available to our Wilmette D39 families. Through an expanded partnership between District 39 and our very own Wilmette Park District, the Park District will be coordinating both before and after school programs for D39 students, including the early bird programming. We are thrilled to share the Beyond the Bell Programs of the Wilmette Park District and invite you to check them all out at

Registration will begin on Tuesday, June 8th at 9 AM. For specific information on Campus Clubs located next year at Romona, McKenzie or Centennial or any other After School Clubs for next year, please contact For details on Morning CARE or CARE please contact

Strategic Planning Update

Our Core Strategic Planning Team continues to make terrific progress in their work. They are currently in the process of setting direction and future focus priorities. Once their drafting work is completed in late June, they will again seek community review and feedback to assist in refining their plans before presenting a final Strategic Plan to the Board of Education in September. Please look for an email regarding feedback opportunities this summer and fall. For more information on Strategic Planning, visit our D39 Strategic Planning site.

Celebrating Our Retirees

Ann Retzinger

Ann has spent 29 magical years as a first grade teacher at Central. Ann is a talented, friendly, and inspiring teacher. She has taught the first grade curriculum in exciting and innovative ways. Her warm personality and creative artistic twist to learning makes her a magnet, someone people always enjoy being around. Bottom line - Ann makes learning fun! She takes life in with a big smile and a warm hug. She truly loves all of her students. She always made each student in her class feel like he/she was her favorite. She cared for many students and their families over the years. Ann's smile, sense of humor, and dedication will be greatly missed.

Carol Fritz

Carol has been Central's PE teacher for the past 30 years. She is a woman of many talents. She is also Central School's biggest fan! She is Ms. School Spirit. Carol has costumes for every holiday and school event. She proudly wears our school's mascot costume and the students love seeing her. Carol is also very musically inclined. She loves creating songs for students. Students will always remember how she shared her musical talents during school assemblies. And most of all, whatever Carol does, it is always for the children. She always has their best interests at heart. She does everything, not for the showmanship, but because she wants memorable experiences for the children, which is what she is all about!

Linda Diekman

Linda has been a librarian for the past 5 years at Central School. She is well connected in the community. Her ability to arrange special author visits through her connections is appreciated by all. And of course this year, Linda co-led the One Book One District initiative that included a book walk to engage the community with the book selection, "Outside Inside," in new and creative ways during the pandemic. Overall, we will miss what Linda embodies the most - a love of reading and a commitment to the students. Linda is forward thinking and imaginative as she is deeply rooted in tradition and best practice. She has all the traits of an amazing library media specialist and she has made us all better educators as a result. We will miss her dearly!

Activity Day Became Activity Week This Year!

This week all of our students participated in Activity Day stations during PE classes. Our in-person learners participated in 1 or 2 stations per day during class time. Most classes were able to compete in an activity against another class outside. Students enjoyed our traditional Activity Day games including potato sack races, Oodles of Noodles, the 25 and 39 Yard Dash, and H2O Cup Relay. Our remote PE classes also participated in Activity Day via Zoom with their remote PE teachers. Remote students had fun completing" One Minute Challenges" against our PE teachers and guest teachers as well.

We Brought "Outdoor Education" To Central School!

Our fourth graders participated in Outdoor Education activities today. The students had fun examining owl pellets, walking to Gilson Beach, and participating in team-building activities with their homeroom classes.

Lost & Found

Our Lost & Found is overflowing! We will be placing it outside our front doors on Monday starting at 8am so families can locate lost items. We will keep the Lost & Found outside throughout the day.

Wilmette Warriors - This Week!

In an effort to recognize our outstanding students, each classroom teacher is identifying a student from class for a weekly special recognition. Each week, students will be selected for showing characteristics such as kindness, respect, trust, caring, friendship, courage and community. Selected students will receive a certificate and recognition through a short celebration video that will be shared on Friday afternoons.

Please CLICK HERE to see the FINAL video of the year celebrating our WILMETTE WARRIORS from this week!

4th Grade Farewell, June 8th

We will be celebrating our 4th graders on June 8th with fun activities that will be done remotely and in person. Classroom teachers will be sharing the events that are planned with their families.

If your child is a remote learner and not able to participate in-person, we will have an alternate virtual activity that students can join anytime between 10:45-11:45am. Students will get ready for a summer of reading fun with our librarian, Ms. Diekman. Students will need to have paper, a pencil, and crayons or colored pencils along with a favorite book to share with the group.

Join Zoom Meeting

Meeting ID: 766 855 7526

Passcode: d39diekman

Summer Reading

Summer is the time for sunshine, swimming, s'mores, and READING! Information on public library summer reading programs, SORA summer use, and recommended reading lists, are available in this edition of Reading Matters.

Student Device Return

The tech department will be collecting all student devices this year. Prior to your child’s return date please sign out of any Apple ID account that is not a student's account.

Second and third graders must return both parts of their iPad cases - the iPad and the keyboard. If your child received a charger from the district, please make sure to send it to school on your child’s device return date. All devices will be collected during the school day.

Kindergarden & First Grade - Tuesday June 8th

Second, Third and Fourth Grades - Wednesday June 9th

Remote students - Thursday June 10th (see more details for remote students below)

Remote Students Supply & Device Drop-off

As we bring closure to this school year, we wanted to provide your family with an organized plan for returning materials to our school. On June 10th, following your child’s final morning meeting with their class, you will have two opportunities to return materials to our school. Below is a sequence of steps that may support your family as you prepare for material return.

  1. Pick up a set of packing bags at the front of the school starting Monday June 7th. The paper bag will be used to pack textbooks, manipulatives and any other materials. The plastic bag will be used to pack devices and chargers. Packing the bags will also be explained in each class.
  2. Bring packed bags to Central on Thursday June 10th between 10:30-11:30am OR between 1:00 and 2:00pm. Your family can select one of the two time slots to drive your materials to the front of Central School. A table will be set up at the front of the school where bags can be dropped off and checked in by staff. Items might include:

iPad/Chromebook; charger



D39 or classroom library books


Central Avenue Construction Update for June 4th

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PTA Announcements

*Note - the PTA sends a newsletter to families separately on Sundays. Below are just a few highlights and reminders.

Central School PTA Fundraiser

Happy Birthday Yard Sign:

Looking for a fun and exciting way to celebrate birthdays during COVID? Book a Happy Birthday yard card today!

How does this work?

Choose the date and color sign you would like placed in your yard below in sign up genius. Members from the Central School PTA will set up and pick up the Happy Birthday sign!


The sign rentals are for a 24 hour period. This rental will ONLY be provided to homes within the boundaries of Central Elementary School. The Happy Birthday signs are RENTAL ONLY.

Community Announcements...

Information on community events can be found here: Community Events


  • Wilmette Historical Museum hosts a free family fun event: Can You Solve This Wilmette History Mystery? Follow the clues. June 19 - August 14
  • New Trier Junior Trevian Cheerleading Summer Camp Registration is now open. June 21-25. Kdg-4th grades 10:30 am - 12:30 pm; 5-8 grades 1:30 - 3:30 pm.
  • The Center for the Gifted is offering spring and summer courses. "Summer 2021 Worlds of Wisdom and Wonder" for grades K-8. "Build Your Own Summer of 2021" allows you to create your exclusive friend group program.
  • Wilmette Wings Soccer Club tryout registration is open for players in Kindergarten - 8th grades interested in travel teams. Register at
  • Trevian Girls Softball Association is adding players to their girls 8-12 year old spring and summer teams.
  • Wilmette Baseball Association’s 2021 Spring House League registration is now open for Kdg. through 8th graders.
  • Covid Catch Up Tutors has rebranded to "Best Step Tutoring”. Free online tutoring for PreK-12 grades.
  • Wilmette Food Pantry is open every Tuesday 10:30-11:30 am at Trinity United Methodist Church.
  • Join Girl Scouts! World of Girl Scouts for Kdg & 1st graders. Becoming Me Series for Kdg-3rd graders. Summer Sprout Series for girls entering Kdg.
  • Join Girl Scouts! World of Girl Scouts for Kdg & 1st graders. Becoming Me Series for Kdg-3rd graders. Summer Sprout Series for girls entering Kdg.

Join us on Twitter!

Central School is on Twitter!

  • We have TWO Twitter accounts. Please "follow" us at! Explore Central 39 (with our actual "handle" as @explorecentral). With this account, we mostly share student activities that are completed in the Learning Commons (but other activities are often included as well). We are also providing this Twitter feed on our Central School homepage.
  • There is also a principal page @BeckyLittmann where you can follow a variety of school happenings including all-school events, classroom activities, PTA enrichment, and school goals.

Save the Dates...

June 9th

  • Last Day for all kindergarteners & KEEP39

June 10th

  • Last Day for Grades 1-4 (11:55am Dismissal)
August 18th
  • Student class placement emailed to families
August 25th
  • First half-day of school for students