Woodland Elementary School

Weekly Update for Friday, November 18

What a great week at Elementary!! It certainly was a busy week too! With conferences right around the corner, the students and staff have been busy getting everything ready for next week. As a reminder, we will have in-person conferences on Monday and virtual conferences on Tuesday. Student will be dismissed early at 10:50 on both days. If you still need to make an appointment, please reach out directly to your child's classroom teacher as the sign-up is now closed. Virtual conferences on Tuesday will be held via Zoom or Google Meets and your child's teacher (and any subsequent conferences) will be sending links for the events.

With the colder weather, we are going to put a pause on Ice Cream on Fridays through the Winter Months. I know we just started it back up and it was a treat for some students but we also know that cold weather is probably not the most ideal time for ice cream. Thank you for your understanding.

I have included two additional and important updates in this week's newsletter. The first is a reminder about attendance and how being in attendance is so important to your child's education. We understand that there are sicknesses and emergencies but limiting appointments and such as much as possible for after school hours certainly goes a long way.

Another thing that I wanted to share with families is bullying vs. conflict. I shared this last year after my son (who is now in fourth grade) shared with me about others bullying him. When I asked him about it, it was not bullying but conflict and we worked through how he can work with his peers to help settle the said conflict. I received a lot of positive feedback when I shared this information last year and thought now that we are certainly in full swing at Elementary, it might be a good time to re-share this with our parent community. I encourage all of our families to have open communication regarding how their child is doing in terms of relationships with peers. If there are any concerns that require us to be notified in regard to this, I always appreciate partnering with our families so please reach out for help and we will intervene as needed.

I will not be sending out an update next week, so I want to take this opportunity to wish all of our families a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday. I hope you are able to sit back and relax a little with your families and friends. With Thanksgiving comes the season of thanking and I want to thank each and every one of our amazing students, staff, and families for all you do to support our learning community.

I hope everyone enjoys their weekend and thank you for your continued support!


Ryan Wollberg

Principal, Woodland Elementary

Shop With an Educator

Big picture
Big picture

What is Bullying?

Bullying is unwanted, aggressive behavior among school aged children that involves a real or perceived power imbalance. The behavior is repeated, or has the potential to be repeated, over time. Both kids who are bullied and who bully others may have serious, lasting problems.

In order to be considered bullying, the behavior must be aggressive and include:

  • An Imbalance of Power: Kids who bully use their power—such as physical strength, access to embarrassing information, or popularity—to control or harm others. Power imbalances can change over time and in different situations, even if they involve the same people.
  • Repetition: Bullying behaviors happen more than once or have the potential to happen more than once.

Bullying includes actions such as making threats, spreading rumors, attacking someone physically or verbally, and excluding someone from a group on purpose.

Big picture

Fall Conferences

As Thanksgiving is quickly approaching so are our Fall Conferences! This year our Fall Conferences will be held on Monday, November 21 (in person) and Tuesday, November 22 (virtual). I am including the link below for times if you need to check what time your conference is at for either Monday or Tuesday.

As a reminder, Monday's conferences are in person and Tuesday's conferences are virtual. Students are not expected to attend the Fall conferences. If you need to change, cancel, or sign up for conferences please contact the appropriate staff member to set that directly up with him or her. We thank you in advance and look forward to a great two days of conferences!

Report Card Survey: 1st - 5th Grade

Last Friday, you were invited to view your child's 1st Quarter Report Card in Skyward Family Access.

Now we are looking for your feedback!

The purpose of a report card is to communicate meaningful and relevant information related to a student’s progress against Illinois Learning Standards. Currently, Woodland’s Grading and Report Card Committee is working to improve report cards in grades 1-5.

We are asking for your feedback for the following reasons:

  • It has been well over two decades since the Elementary and Intermediate report cards have been reviewed.
  • It is best practice to continue to improve how we report learning to parents.
  • Revised Illinois Learning Standards in all subject areas are being implemented.

Your voice is important to us as we shift to incorporate equitable grading practices and align report cards with state standards. After reviewing your child’s Q1 report card, please complete this survey by Nov. 22, 2022.

Report Card Survey (in English and Spanish)

If you would like to have more information about the committee or the process of report card development, please contact Dr. Victoria Kieffer, Director of Teaching and Learning at vkieffer@dist50.net.

You asked and we delivered!

Due to popular demand, our Woodland Elementary Creative Mode spirit wear is now available for purchase. Use the link below to place your order by 11/21/22. Orders will be delivered to your child's homeroom classroom in December.

Theme days at Elementary

Our culture and climate committee has created a Theme Day calendar (see below). Although your child is not required to participate, we encourage everyone to have some fun and celebrate our amazing Elementary community. The students love dressing up and I can tell you that our staff does a great job participating as well. I am appreciative of our staff for doing this and look forward to each and every upcoming spirit day.

Quick Tips and Text-A-Tip

Quick Tips - Have something to share with us?

Visit our school website and click on the "Quick Tips" icon, to access Quick Tip. Quick Tips is an anonymous and confidential reporting system for students. I have included a link to the URL below.

Tips may be submitted via Quick Tip 24 hours a day. However, tips may not be received and acted upon until the next school day. If your tip is regarding an emergency situation, please call 911.

Text-A-Tip - Anonymous, 24/7 Mental Health Support.

To be connected with a licensed mental health counselor: Text WTHELP to 844-823-5323 or download Lake County Help from the app store

More Volunteer opportunities

Woodland Primary and Elementary are starting a Parent Mentor Program. Please click the link below for additional infromation!

Covid-19 Mitigation Strategies

COVID-19 Information

This year we are excited to return to closer to normal operations after a long journey navigating the COVID-19 pandemic. Students can look forward to working in small groups, moving around more freely during times of play, and sitting with friends in the cafeteria. While things will look and feel more normal, we will continue to have a few safety precautions in place to help keep everyone safe, much like we would during a typical cold/flu season.

  • We will continue to provide enhanced levels of surface cleaning in high traffic and high touch point areas, including school buses.
  • We will have visual reminders and signage reminding everyone to wash their hands, cover their cough, and respect personal space.
  • Masks and physical distancing will not be required, but masks will be provided to anyone who would like to wear one. (Masks continue to be federally required in healthcare settings and for healthcare personnel, including school nurse offices.)
  • We will expect that all staff and students will stay home when sick, especially if they are experiencing any symptoms related to COVID-19.
  • If a student or staff member tests positive for COVID-19, they will need to isolate for five days per the guidelines from the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH).
  • While we are no longer required to identify individual close contacts, Woodland will continue to monitor cases among our school population to understand the prevalence of the virus in our district. Parents will be notified of positive cases at the school through the COVID-19 Dashboard on the district website.

As we have learned over the past few years, guidance from our local, state, and federal partners can change at any time. The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) released new guidance for schools this week acknowledging that COVID-19 is here to stay, but reflects a shift toward returning to normalcy. Woodland will be evaluating the new guidance and we will communicate any changes to our procedures with families as needed.

SHIELD Testing

Woodland will once again offer weekly SHIELD testing for any staff members and students who wish to participate, beginning the week of Aug. 29. Students are automatically enrolled in the program, but this testing is OPTIONAL. We have added an option to Opt-Out via Family Access. If you log in to Family Access parents can make that designation. If easier, you may also contact the school office for assistance or please see your welcome back packet with a letter from me for more details. If you have previously opted out of SHIELD testing, your child will remain on the opt-out list. If you wish to re-enroll in the program you are welcome to do so at any time. Learn More about SHIELD Testing.

Woodland COVID-19 Dashboard Updated Daily

Woodland created a COVID-19 Dashboard to help stakeholders understand the impact of the virus-specific to Woodland. Please check the dashboard daily to see case counts for students and staff. This is a live document and the data will be updated throughout the day as new cases are confirmed. COVID Data Tracking is currently paused while school is not in session, but we will resume tracking the data on this dashboard the week of August 22nd.

Health Reminders for the 2022-2023 School Year

Medication Drop Off

  • All medications, prescription and over-the-counter, require both a physician and parent signature.

  • The Medication Authorization Form on light blue paper will be used for all medications.

  • The Asthma Action Form and Food Allergy Action Plan are also used. Copies of the forms are available in our school office and on our website https://www.dist50.net/STUDENTFORMS/pages/default.aspx

  • Allergy Awareness Policy. Woodland continues to be allergy-aware. All classrooms will be safe for all students. In order to ensure food safety during snack, please make sure you check with your child’s teacher or the health office and follow all food guidelines or restrictions.

  • Please also consider sending in an extra set of clothing in case of accidents.

Dental Reminders for Second Grade

School Hours

As per our Board of Education Meeting on Thursday, July 28 our school hours have shifted slightly for the upcoming year. Please see below for updated start times:

  • Bus Drop Off/Breakfast - 7:20 a.m. - 7:40 a.m.
  • Class Begins - 7:45 (students are marked tardy at 7:45 a.m. and must be signed in at our Main Office)
  • Dismissal Begins - 2:05 (last bus leaves by 2:15)

Please also note that new for this upcoming school year Parent Pick Up location and times have been slightly modified based on previous years to allow for better traffic flow. All students who ride the bus will be dismissed first and students who are being picked up by parents will be dismissed from classes last. If you need to pick up your child early from school please plan on doing so by 1:35 otherwise in order to avoid congestion in the parking lot, we ask that you pick your child up from the parent pick-up lane.

As in years past, we request that all changes to your child's pick-up be made prior to 12:00 p.m. by contacting your child's teacher or our front office.

School Breakfast and Lunch

The Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) will not be providing a Child Nutrition Nationwide Waiver this year. Please feel free to log in to your Family Access Account to add money to your student’s account for hot lunches or as always, feel free to send them with a packed lunch from home. We discourage lunch drop-offs in the office to avoid lunches being late or missed. Also, delivery services (Grub Hub, Uber Eats, etc.) are not allowed throughout Woodland.

Student Drop Off/Pick Up

Please review specifics regarding parent drop off and parent pick up

  • Student drop-off will be at the Northeast side of the building between 7:20 a.m. - 7:40 a.m.

  • If you arrive after 7:40 a.m.., we ask you to park your vehicle in a legal parking space in our lower lot, to avoid receiving a ticket from the Lake County Sheriff, and walk your child into the office. Students will be marked tardy if they arrive after 7:45.

  • Parent pick-up will again take place at approximately 2:25 p.m. at the Northeast side of the building. We want to make sure everyone is safe, and ask that you have your Curbsmart tag ready. We will open the doors at approximately 2:25 p.m.

Additional information, including maps, will be sent electronically as we get closer to the beginning of the school year.

Parent Pick Up/Curbsmart Pick-Up Tags

Now that Curbsmart is running very smoothly, we would like you to update your weekly parent communication with the following reminders.

  • Please be in line no later than 2:15
  • Have placard ready
  • Continue working with your child on buckling themselves in
  • Please refrain from getting out of your car
  • If you arrive after 2:30, your child will be brought to the office and wait there

Thank you for your help and understanding!

Additional Information Regarding Busing

To view your student’s current bus information please login to Tyler’s Versatrans E-Link. Your Family Access Family ID has been set up as both your USER ID and PASSWORD. You can find your Family ID in Family Access under Student Information - Family Page. Track your child’s bus by using “My Stop” by Versatrans App located in the Apple Store or Google Play and use the same login credentials as E-Link. We encourage all students to ride their assigned bus to and from school as each bus driver will have a roster of their assigned students. Please keep in mind that school buses always have the right of way while on school grounds. Should you have any questions regarding your child’s bus route, please call our Transportation Department at (847) 856-3644.

PTA News

11/18: Good Night, Sleep Tight, Family Event, more info

12/2: Chuck E Cheese Fundraiser, stay tuned for details

12/8 - 12/9: Holiday Shop, at Intermediate, INT students shop during the day, all other students invited to attend 5:30-8:30pm, stay tuned for volunteer info!

12/15: December PTA Meeting, 9:30am at ESC

Hiring in the W

Have you ever considered working for the school district where your child (or children) attend school? You don't have to be a teacher to work for a school. Working for the district could mean similar hours and days off as your child depending on the type of position. We have more than 800 employees and we are one of the biggest employers in Gurnee. Please view our current job openings on the district website under the "Careers" tab or follow @WoodlandCareers on Twitter.

We are currently hiring for:

  • Building Secretary at Elementary (follow the link here to apply or share with someone you know)
  • Network System Engineer
  • Student Support Technician
  • Paraprofessionals
  • Bus Drivers
  • Administrative Assistant
  • Nurse
  • Payroll Specialist
  • Guest/Substitute Teachers
  • Playground/Lunchroom Supervisors
  • And more...

Join the #LifeintheW Team Today!

Virtual Backpack

Please remember to visit the Virtual Backpack throughout the year to see other events and activities for children and families in the area. Newly Added: WSRA Truck-or-Treat, Oct. 23!

Get the latest news from Woodland and Elementary

Woodland has a variety of social media channels to help families stay up-to-date on the latest news and updates:

Social Media: If you prefer to get the above-mentioned news from Woodland via social media, follow us on Twitter @ElemWoodland50 @Woodland50news or 'Like' us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/WoodlandDistrict50 or Follow us on Instagram: @Woodland50_elem

Woodland Elementary School

17261 W. Gages Lake Road

Gages Lake, Illinois 60030

Phone: 847-984-8800

Fax: 847-549-9806