Superintendent's Corner

Avoca District 37 😎 April 2, 2022 😎

In this important issue...

  • Students return Tuesday, April 5 - COVID precautions for a safe return
  • Congrats to Science Olympiad and Marie Murphy Volleyball
  • Our Diverse Community's Diverse Spring Religious Observances
  • Summer Learning with Galileo (SIGN UP)

Students Return Tuesday, April 5 - COVID Testing Encouraged

Please remember that there is no student attendance on Monday, April 4. Staff members participating in Professional Learning and in planning to make the last quarter of our year as successful as possible.

Students return on Tuesday, April 5.

COVID numbers are rising in the area, as indicated on the local websites I monitor to help determine COVID risk in our schools. (IDPH site for Region 10, CDC levels (not as local), and the Northwestern University COVID tracker.) Once school convenes, the most important data to monitor will be the number of positive cases among our students and staff.

That is why prior to school on Tuesday, I strongly encourage you to have your family complete at least one PCR or Rapid Antigen test. The latter can be found at any Walgreen's or CVS.

Of course, do not send your student to school if they obtain a positive result. Likewise, if your student is symptomatic, get them tested and keep them home until their symptoms improve or you obtain an alternative diagnosis from a doctor.

Finally, it is very understandable that upon our return from Spring Break, and as COVID numbers increase, that more staff and/or students will choose to wear masks. Please remember that currently we are mask optional and support any individual's choice regarding the wearing of a mask.

Congrats to Science Olympiad & Marie Murphy Volleyball

What a wonderful feeling to re-engage with pre-pandemic extracurricular activities and to excel in a way that brings recognition to our students, staff, and schools.

First, our Science Olympiad team at Marie Murphy overwhelmed the competition at the regionals before Spring Break and will be headed to the state competition in a good position to qualify for Nationals. The Junior Varsity placed first in 21 out of 24 competitions and the Varsity placed first in 19 of 24 competitions. Congrats to all of our volunteer coaches from the community, to our coaches from Northwestern University, and especially to Mr. Gravagna and Mr. Persino for their work.

Second, our Junior Varsity and Varsity volleyball teams both won their respective conference titles on March 22nd, each after having had a stellar season. Beating the likes of Glencoe, Winnetka, Sunset Ridge, Sears, and Christian Heritage at both levels signals a level of development and coaching that should make us all proud. Congrats to all of our players and to coaches Jack Mastros (JV) and Kelli Lane (Varsity).

Our Diverse Community's Diverse Spring Religious Observances

SPRING is another time to recognize the diversity that makes our community a rich and rewarding place to live. The following explanations and connecting resources are not endorsements of any religion or of any resource, but are meant to promote understanding as much as possible. While not all of these observances are celebrations, recognizing and celebrating the fact of our diversity is a gift of living in the Avoca community.

Holi (Hinduism) is the festival celebrating the end of Winter and the emergence of Spring, although aspects of it symbolize more than just a seasonal transition. This year Holi was celebrated on March 17 and 18 in India. To find out more about this festive celebration, click here.

Easter (Christianity) - Occurs on April 17th this year, but falls on different Sunday dates in the Spring annually. This Christian holiday celebrates the resurrection of Jesus, Jesus' ascent into heaven, and is considered the most important of the Christian holidays. Learn more about the Christian holiday of Easter by clicking here (Greek and other Orthodox Christians celebrate Easter on April 24th this year.)

Passover (Judaism) - Occurs from sundown on April 15th to sundown on April 22nd this year, but occurs at different times during the Spring each year. The eight-day holiday, "Pesach" in Hebrew, commemorates the emancipation of the Ancient Jewish people from enslavement by the Pharaohs of Egypt. The holiday is marked by avoiding leaven bread and sharing ritual meals. The term "passover" comes from the fact that the Israelite God passed over Jewish households when wreaking vengeance on Egyptian households. Your can learn more about Pesach by clicking here.

Ramadan (Islam) - Occurs from sundown on April 2nd to sundown on May 1st this year, but Ramadan does not always occur in the Spring. Based on a lunar calendar, Ramadan can happen at different times during the year but it is annual. Ramadan celebrates the date when the holy book of Islam, the Quran, was first revealed to the prophet Muhammad. During this month, Muslims are called upon to fast during the day, pray, and commit acts of charity. Learn more about Ramadan by clicking here. Families whose students fast during Ramadan should let their teachers know so that students' health and safety can be supported during this month.

Summer Learning with Galileo at Avoca West

We are excited to partner with Camp Galileo, an group well known for offering high quality STEAM experiences for kids in the summer ages PreK through Rising 10th graders. They also have a Counselor-in-Training option for older students.

You can sign your student up for a week or for multiple weeks, running June 27 through August 5 at Avoca West (in the air conditioned rooms):

  • Camp runs 9 a.m. to 3 pm.
  • Extended Care starts at 7:30 a.m. and runs until 6 p.m.

STEAM Sessions this Summer are:

  • Amusement Park Adventure
  • Dinosaur Dig
  • Castles & Quests

Extensive aid is available for families who already qualify for reduced fees this year in Avoca schools. A separate email will go out shortly to those families with a sign up code.

To learn more and register, please CLICK HERE.