Mustang Memo - 8/21/20

Message from Principal Ali - Student Supply Pick-Up and Material Drop-Off

Dear Mann Families,


Thank you for your patience and understanding as we have been working through the many logistical items related to the beginning of the school year. Mann staff has been preparing supply kits for students to pick up on August 27th. Inside these kits will be (workbooks, manipulatives, additional supplies, etc.) Families will also be able to grab the school supply kits that were ordered in the spring of last school year.


If you have more than one student at Mann, you will pick up belongings for all of your children during the time of your oldest child. During this time, you will also return any library or classroom books. Please place them inside of a bag labeled with your child’s name on it.


The following times have been established for supply pick-up and drop-off.


Thursday, August 27th:


5th Grade - 8:30-9:30

4th Grade - 9:30-10:30

3rd Grade - 10:30-11:30

2nd Grade - 12:00-1:00

1st Grade - 1:00-2:00

Kindergarten - 2:00-3:00


For those that already have an iPad, you will be keeping your devices unless you are leaving D97. If you are leaving the district, you will return your device, your charging cord, and plug.


This will be done in a drive-thru fashion as we adhere to the social distancing guidelines established by Governor Pritzker. In order to do that, we need your help. We are asking that all parents please follow the guidelines below to ensure a successful, safe exchange of items.


  1. Families will arrive during their designated time and drive through the front of the building on Kenilworth. This is our main school entrance: 921 N. Kenilworth Ave - Door #1

  2. Write your student(s) name and grade using large print on a piece of paper and place it on the passenger side near the windshield.

  3. When you arrive, you should remain in your car and if possible pop your trunk without leaving your vehicle. A Mann staff member or helper will bring your child(rens) supplies to you and place them in the truck.

    1. If a parent/guardian needs to open the trunk manually, please get out of the vehicle, manually open the trunk, and get back in the vehicle.

    2. Once the parent/guardian is back in the vehicle, the school staff will place the items in the trunk.

  4. Any library books you are returning should be placed in a bag and labeled - Library Books. A staff member or helper will remove these items from your trunk.

  5. Any borrowed classroom materials or classroom library books should be placed in a separate bag and labeled with your child's former classroom teacher's name and grade. A staff member or helper will remove these items from your trunk.

  6. In the event you will not be driving, we ask that you adhere to social distancing guidelines and wait patiently for a staff member to exchange materials with you.

  7. Please wear a face covering when you come for pick-up. You will remain in your vehicle at all times but will be communicating with staff/volunteers, so a face covering is needed.

  8. If you are unable to come during supply distribution, please contact Mr. Ali at hali@op97.org or the main office.


*During this time frame, students in K-3 will also be receiving their iPads from the district. Please be sure to connect the iPad to wifi when you get home so the apps we’re preloading finish uploading and updating. After connecting it to wifi, please wait for further guidance from your homeroom teachers about iPad usage. We will be conducting an iPad boot camp with all students at the beginning of the year.


**Additionally, we will be collecting bottle caps for our Plastic Cap Collection to build our Buddy Bench. Our team is requesting that all Plastic caps/lids be clean and dry.


Please feel free to reach out to me (hali@p97.org) or your child’s teacher if you have any questions or concerns. Thank you in advance for your patience, understanding, and teamwork as we all work together to get the necessary materials in our students' hands to kick off the year in the safest way possible.


Best,


Principal Ali

Device Distribution Schedule:

District 97 has purchased additional devices to ensure that ALL students will have devices during the 2020-21 school year. Students in grades K-5 will have iPads and students in grades 6-8 will have Chromebooks. Mann students will be receiving their devices on August 27th. Click here to access our device distribution schedule >

Important Dates

8/24 - Virtual Kindergarten Meet and Greet from 5:00-6:00

8/25 -

Virtual Second Grade Meet and Greet

  • Mariani, Jerkatis, and Germanier from 3:00-4:00
  • Miller from 6:30-7:30

8/26 -

  • Virtual Fifth Grade Meet and Greet from 5:00-6:00
  • Virtual Third Grade Meet and Greet from 6:00-7:00
  • Virtual Fourth Grade Meet and Greet from 6:00-7:00
8/27 -
  • Student Supply Pickup (information listed above)
  • Virtual First Grade Meet and Greet from 6:30-7:30

9/1 - First day of school


Virtual New Family Welcome - TBD

Virtual Curriculum Night -TBD

Virtual Meet and Greets

This week, your homeroom teacher will be sharing details for their virtual meet and greet. The focus of these Meet and Greets is for students and families to begin getting to know their homeroom teacher and vice versa. Teachers plan to share some details for the first day of school, our PBIS expectations for remote learning, an outline of a typical school day and quickly introduce our special area teachers.


Teachers will be sending a zoom link along with their welcome email to families. Please keep an eye out for these!

Parent University Recordings

On Aug. 13, District 97 held its first Virtual Parent University to provide families with tips and tools to support students with remote learning this fall. Recordings of these sessions are available at https://www.op97.org/remotelearning/parent-university.

School Physicals and Immunizations

Although District 97 is starting the 2020-2021 school year with remote learning, the State of Illinois is still requiring all students entering kindergarten, 6th grade, and any students new to District 97 to turn in a current school physical (Certificate of Child Health Examination and Immunization record) with up-to-date immunizations (requirements for the State of Illinois can be found here). If you have not already provided this information when you registered your child, please email your child's' records directly to your school nurse.

Meal Distributions to Continue through Aug. 24

District 97 has been working with our food service provider, Oak Park and River Forest High School District 200, to ensure that all District 97 students have access to meals this summer. D97 will continue to hold weekly meal distributions through Monday, August 24.

Details about meal distribution during Trimester 1 are still being finalized. We hope to share information with families soon.

Summer meal pick-ups will be held every Monday, 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. Meals are available to any District 97 family in need.

If you have any questions, please contact our food service coordinator, Carla Ellis, at cellis@op97.org.

Pandemic EBT Benefit Deadline Extended to August 31

The Illinois Department of Human Services (IDHS) launched the Pandemic EBT to provide nutritional resources to families who have lost access to free or reduced-price school meals due to school closures. Families will receive money on a new or existing EBT card to help fill the school meals gap. If your child receives free or reduced-price school meals through the National School Lunch Program (NSLP), or your child attends a school that offers free school meals to all students, then you are eligible to receive P-EBT benefits. Families who have lost their job or wages may now be eligible.

The deadline to apply for this benefit has been extended to Aug. 31, 2020. For more information about eligibility and how to apply, please visit https://bit.ly/2DJDEAd.

Free/Reduced Lunch Application

We know that a common experience for many families during this health crisis is the loss of jobs and income. This change in income may qualify your children for free or reduced-price meals. We encourage all families who currently qualify to take a few minutes to complete the National School Lunch application as soon as possible. If you have any questions, please email the district's food service coordinator, Carla Ellis, at cellis@op97.org.

Information from Community Child Care Providers for 2020-21 School Year

In preparation for the 2020-21 school year, District 97 is working with community partners to support the child care needs of our families and staff. We have already engaged in preliminary discussions with some key organizations, including, but not limited to: Hephzibah, Park District of Oak Park, Collaboration for Early Childhood, and the Oak Park Education Foundation.


Information about child care programs will be posted here. Please click the links below for information from Hepzibah and the Park District of Oak Park.


Hepzibah: https://www.hephzibahhome.org/2020-day-care-program

Registration for Hephzibah fall programming will open on Friday, July 31, for current Hephzibah families, and on Monday, Aug. 3, for the larger Oak Park community for youth entering kindergarten through sixth grade.


Park District of Oak Park: https://www.pdop.org/programs/clubhouse-afterschool-program/Those currently registered in the Clubhouse program will have priority registration for the Clubhouse 2.0 program. Priority registration begins at 8:30 a.m. on Saturday, Aug. 1. There will be limited capacity and therefore, registration will open to all Oak Park residents, only if there are spaces available, beginning Tuesday, Aug. 4 at 8:30 a.m.

First Day of School/Calendar Update

During its regular meeting on Tuesday, Aug. 11, the District 97 Board of Education approved a modified calendar for the 2020-21 school year. The first day of school for students will be Tuesday, Sept. 1.


Oak Park and River Forest High School 200 also recently adopted a modified calendar, which shifted the start of their winter break to Dec. 24, 2020. Students will return for Semester 2 until Jan. 11, 2021.


In order to accommodate families with students in both districts, the District 97 Calendar Committee will be reviewing our modified calendar to determine options for aligning our winter break with District 200. Currently, winter break in District 97 is scheduled to begin on Dec. 21, 2020, with students returning on Jan. 4, 2021.


Regardless of the dates for winter break, we plan to hold our first day of school for students on Sept. 1.


We will provide an update to staff and families as soon as possible.

D97 Survey: Social-Emotional and Mental Health Needs

District 97 is continuing to plan for the 2020-21 school year and is prioritizing the social-emotional and mental health needs of students, staff, and families to ensure the availability and quality of appropriate resources and supports. We have partnered with Hanover Research to design and analyze a survey to understand your needs and priorities related to social-emotional and mental health for this school year, and we would like to hear from you.


You can access the survey here or by copying and pasting the following URL into your browser: https://hanover-research.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_39RQ56KYF6mBgwZ. The survey will close on Monday, Aug. 24.


Please note that your responses to this survey will be completely anonymous and will only be shared with District 97 in aggregate form, so please be candid in your responses. We appreciate you taking the time to complete this survey!