McKenzie Monitor

January 26, 2018

Connections for the Homeless

Connections for the Homeless is based in Evanston and helps more than 800 individuals and families that are homeless or threatened with homelessness each year.

Please donate for homeless to survive outside! Not everyone who is homeless feels safe asking for help. Connections for the Homeless offers outreach to homeless people on the street who don't come in for services, offering some of the basics needed to survive outside.

Homeless Outreach Kits - Sign up Genius

A group of Mckenzie 3rd graders are collecting and assembling Homeless Outreach Kits. Please consider helping by using this Sign Up Genius link to donate required items.


Makery Materials Needed

If you happen to have the following items around the house and are willing to donate them to our Makery, we would greatly appreciate it! We have lots of exciting learning happening!

  • Jumbo Straws
  • Scotch Tape Refills
  • Masking Tape
  • Disinfectant Wipes

Sharing Committee - Carman-Buckner Holiday Shop

The Holiday Shop at Carman-Buckner was a huge success! Over 200 gifts were donated to stock the shop, as well as wrapping paper, tape and decorative bows. The principal and social worker at Carman-Buckner were excited about the event and made every effort to make is festive and fun for all. They decorated the gym, had holiday music playing, and had food and cocoa available.

There were numerous teachers and staff from Carman-Buckner present to help in whatever way needed, including as Spanish language assistance.

In addition to stocking a gym full of wonderful gifts, the McKenzie community also donated 150 hats/scarves/ gloves (organized by Jennifer Mullman) and a collection of gently used children’s holiday clothing (organized by Gretchen Capiello). These items were available on tables and families were able to peruse the selection and take what they liked.

It was a festive and successful day that showcased the generosity of the McKenzie community. A big thank you to Cara Gaziano, Heather Stege and Margie Swain for all of your hard work!

Friday Early Dismissal Changes For Next Year

We have all had time to adjust to the Friday early dismissal for grades 1-4. Managing the logistics has been challenging across the District, and at McKenzie too. So, we are initiating a change for next year. We know this may mean some additional planning for a handful of parents, so we wanted to give you plenty of notice.

With the start of the 2018-2019 school year, 2:15-3:15 supervision for our Friday Early Dismissal will be offered only to families who meet the one of following criteria:

  • Your child attends the Park District After School Recreation Program and takes the 3:15 bus from their elementary school to the Wilmette Park District Recreation Center.

  • You have a child in grades 1-4 who has a sibling in PM kindergarten.

  • Your child participates in a Friday After School Park District 3:15 club at your home school.

As we did last year, we will send out material in the summer for you to sign up your child, if eligible, for the Friday supervision.

2nd Posting: Kindergarten Enrichment Program Survey

District 39 is looking for your input as we explore the feasibility of a sustainable, fee-based kindergarten enrichment program. Your input is very important and will help determine if we take this idea to the next step. We are sending this short survey to all of our Early Childhood - 4th grade parents. Please take a few minutes to give us your thoughts by Wednesday, January 31st.


2nd Posting: Erin's Law

The State of Illinois passed a bill known as “Erin’s Law,” which requires all public school districts to implement a prevention-oriented child sexual abuse program. This program teaches students in grades EC-12th grade age appropriate techniques to recognize child sexual abuse and tell a trusted adult.

Erin’s Law is important because child sexual abuse happens every day across the country, across all populations, to children in all socioeconomic and education levels, across all racial and cultural groups, and in rural, suburban, and urban areas. 1 in 4 girls and 1 in 6 boys will be sexually abused before age 18. 90% of child sexual abuse is committed by someone they know and trust.

District 39 will provide a classroom-based program using age-appropriate strategies, language, and materials in grades K-4. Information for Kindergarten and 1st grade will include information from No Trespassing - This is My Body. Information for grades 2-4 will include information from Health World’s, Keeping Kids Safe: An Erin’s Law program (

On February 5th-7th these presentations for the Personal Body Safety Program will occur at McKenzie in all K-4 classrooms with the support of our school (social worker, social work intern, or school psychologist). The program is designed to empower and educate the children. These presentations will discuss the following concepts:

  • Safe vs. Unsafe touch
  • The Safety Rule about Touching (No one should touch your private parts except to keep you clean and healthy)
  • Safe vs. Unsafe Secrets
  • Uh-Oh Feelings
  • Saying no/stop
  • Identifying and learning to tell safe adults
  • You are the boss of your body
  • If someone breaks the safety rule, it is not the child’s fault

If you have any questions about the content of the program, please feel free to contact me at Together we can make sure our children have the right to be safe, and know where to go if they are not.

If you do not wish for your child to participate in this program, please email Nadine Ibrahim at by February 2nd.

FINAL Posting: Lost and Found

Lost and Found items will be donated on January 31st. Please be sure to remind your child(ren) to continue to check the Lost and Found if s/he is missing anything.

The 4C's: Collaboration, Critical Thinking, Communication, Creativity

PTA News and Information


Variety Show 4th Grade Ads:

Attention Parents of 4th Graders! It’s a long standing tradition for parents to recognize their 4th graders in the program of our upcoming McKenzie Variety Show. The cost for each ad is $20. Everyone is encouraged to participate, and anyone with financial hardships may have the fee waived by contacting Principal Rachel Filippi. The deadline to place an ad is Wednesday, January 31st. Click here to purchase an ad today!

Open Gym Nights at McKenzie:

Does your family need an evening to escape the cold and burn off some “snow bound” energy? On selected evenings, the gym is opened up to McKenzie families for some free indoor fun! An assortment of equipment will be available for a variety of activities.

Come to Open Gym Night from 6-8pm on Wednesday, January 31st and Wednesday, February 7th. Click here for more information and to download a waiver.


Girls on the Run:

Calling all 3rd & 4th Grade Girls! Girls On The Run is a 10 week program that offers WAY more than just running. It teaches the power of "I CAN". Each meeting focuses on positively impacting girls' lives by helping them increase self confidence, develop healthy relationships, and feel good about themselves. Our season begins March 14th and will meet after school twice a week on Wednesdays & Fridays from 3:30pm-4:45pm, culminating with a 5k in Grant Park on May 19th. Register here!

Highcrest PTO Nominating Committee:

The HMS PTO is currently assembling the nominating committee to assist with the executive and general board slates for the next school year. We need two reps from each of the elementary schools as well as Highcrest. The PTO is also looking for volunteers for positions on the general and executive boards. If you or someone you know are/is interested in a position on the nominating committee, please contact Lisa Hirschle at by January 31st. If you are interested in general or exec board positions or just want to learn more about them, please also contact Lisa Hirschle at

Holiday Light Recycling:

Drop off broken holiday lights (any color and length) in the McKenzie lobby (compliments of the Green Team!). You can also recycle lights at Wilmette Public Works Facility (711 Laramie Avenue). The recycling boxes are located in the visitor’s parking lot, (24-hours), until January 31st. Let’s keep those lights out of our landfills!

McKenzie's PTA Website

Community Events

Wilmette Historical Museum celebrates African American History Month February 11th 2:00 - 3:00pm

Wilmette Park District hosts after school clubs for students at Central, Harper, McKenzie through March 23.

Community Events Website

Upcoming Dates


Half Day of School

Spirit Wear: Emoji Day


Parent Access to Report Cards


No School: President's Day


Open House

School Hours


Kindergarten AM 8:35am - 11:10am

Kindergarten PM 12:40pm - 3:15pm

Grades 1st - 4th

Monday - Thursday 8:35am - 3:15pm

Friday 8:35am - 2:15pm

Student drop off will begin at 8:20am, and the first bell will ring at 8:30am. Please refer to McKenzie's calendar for important dates/holidays.