Peirce School Family Newsletter

March 2017

Principal's Message

Para ver este boletin en espanol click aqui.


Greetings Peirce Families,


The month of February has come and gone so fast and have we been lucky with warm weather! I hope that you have been able to enjoy the outdoors.


There have been several communications from Chicago Public Schools over the last couple of weeks regarding Chicago being a Sanctuary City. Many of you have inquired about the protections in place to safeguard your children at school. We assure you that CPS will not permit the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) to access CPS facilities or use CPS personnel to assist in the enforcement of federal civil immigration law. Make sure to check out the Peirce website for CPS communications regarding the safeguards in place. Please reach out to school administration with any questions or concerns.


Earlier this month Peirce received another cut in our school funding with a reduction of $103,000. Later in the month, we were given $53,000 of that money back, with a net loss of $50,000. Please note that all programs remain intact and student schedules and programming go without interruption. There is currently a 20 for 20 campaign in place by CPS, encouraging families to contact state legislators and local officials to stress the importance of adequate funding of public education. Please visit this website to learn more about how you can be involved in the 20 for 20 campaign.


I look forward to a very successful 3rd quarter and know that Peirce teachers, students, families and administration will continue to push for excellence despite roadblocks that we face daily.


Warmest Wishes,


Lori Zaimi

Life Service Action Volunteer Project

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February Highlights:

  • Our Pre-Kindergarten and Kindergarten students received a visit from the Storybus!

  • Eliott Topp has advanced to the city Spelling Bee and is the first student in 30 years from Peirce to advance to the city!

  • Our Kindergarten students showcased their work with the Music Institute of Chicago as a part of their PYP Unit - Sharing the Planet by singing songs about the food chain.

  • All students participated in an Oral Health presentation - continue to encourage students to brush two times a day at home.

  • PYP & MYP students ended the 2nd quarter with Learning Celebrations. MYP students participated in a variety of mini-courses.

  • Thank you to the PSO for hosting a very well attended Valentine’s Day Dance!

  • Dr. Riemer hosted a MYP Assessment Parent Meeting, parents of students in 6th-8th grade can reach out to Dr. Riemer with any questions.

  • Thank you to our Student Council for hosting a parent-teacher-student volleyball game! Our parents dominated both the teacher and student games - great work!

  • 1st grade students presented a fundraising plan to the Local School Council - the plan includes the 1st grade students collecting money school-wide to go to the world wildlife fund. This action came out of their work in their IB Unit - Sharing the Planet.

  • A huge thank you to Nora Hughes for spearheading a safety plan and working with the Alderman’s Office which brought in new signage at Gregory and Glenwood indicating that this is a school zone. We hope that this helps with families crossing the street. Nora and a group of parents will continue to monitor that area and if needed will request for additional support (ex: stop sign).

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Assistant Principal Position

Mr. Nanavati’s last day at Peirce was on February 28th, his leadership and service to the Peirce community will definitely be missed. The hiring process for a new assistant principal is currently underway and the Peirce community will be informed of the new candidate as soon as one has been selected. In the meantime, Ms. Zaimi and Ms. Choe will lead the work of Restorative Approaches to Discipline - if you have student concerns, the first place to start is with the teacher and if needed bring to the attention of Ms. Zaimi or Ms. Choe.


PARCC Testing

Students in 3rd-8th grade will be taking the PARCC state assessment which measures progress on the Common Core Standards from March 14th-17th. An official letter from CPS will be coming home within the next week. Reach out to Ms. Lebovitz (3rd-5th) and Dr. Riemer (6th-8th) with any questions. End of the year MAP testing will take place towards the end of May/Beginning of June and is administered to students in 2nd-8th grades. MAP testing is used to determine student promotion in 3rd,6th and 8th grades.

PI Day

March 14th is the annual celebration of the math term PI! PI is a number which compares the circumference of a circle to its diameter, is irrational and decimal places have no end. Celebrate this cool math fact by researching PI with your family and maybe even enjoy a piece of pie after dinner!

Peirce T-Shirts for Sale

Peirce T-Shirts are for sale for $10 and available in all sizes - the new design has our Peirce Panther on the front and the IB Learner Profile on the back in English and Spanish. T-Shirts can be purchased from the main office.


Attendance Update

Even with unusually warm weather, our attendance took a huge dip during the month of February, we are way under our attendance of last year. Please continue to send students to school on-time and every day. We ended January at 96.05% and are currently at 95.81% at the end of February - this is the lowest that the school has been in many many years. Remember that student attendance is important to maintain a consistent program in school and attendance also weighs in at 20% of our overall school report card - we are currently a level 1+. In order for us to receive full points on the school rating in the attendance category we need to be above 96% attendance.


Below indicates attendance YTD by grade level:


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Babes with Blades - March 11th

Last call for tickets before needing to be released to the public! Make sure to join Ms. Zaimi at Babes with Blades to support our 7th & 8th grade trip to Washington DC!


Enjoy an evening of political intrigue presented by Babes with Blades Theatre Company and help defray some of the costs of the D.C. field trip to Washington, D.C.


Please join your fellow Peirce Panthers for an evening of political intrigue presented by Babes with Blades Theatre Company’s production of Henry V. The all-female cast paints the world as Henry V ascends the throne after the assassination of his father. The best part? Your ticket purchase will directly benefit Peirce students!


Click here to purchase tickets

Friends of Peirce Fundraising Opportunities

Friends of Peirce has a few events coming up to support Peirce School Programs such as arts integration, sports and afterschool programs.


  • Be sure to visit Hopleaf (5148 N Clark) and purchase a drink from the Kegs for Kids menu - 100% of the cost of each drink goes to support Peirce School.


  • Save the Date - April 30th will be our Peirce Hopleaf Day, 100% of all sales will go to Peirce! Last year over $30,000 was raised in one day!

Parent IB Behind the Scenes Tours & Program of Inquiry

Our next round of IB Behind the Scenes tours for PK-5th grade will begin in March, sessions will either focus on Inquiry or Restorative Approaches to Discipline. Please save the following dates:


PK Morning Session - March 15th from 8:00 - 9:30am

PK Afternoon Session - March 15th from 12:30 - 2:00pm

Kindergarten - March 7th from 8:00 - 9:30am

1st Grade - March 20th from 8:00 - 9:30am

2nd Grade - March 13th from 8:15 - 9:45am

3rd Grade - March 22nd from 1:30 - 3:00pm

4th Grade - March 9th from 8:00 - 9:30am

5th Grade - March 22nd from 1:30 - 3:00pm


Be on the lookout for more information.



The Program of Inquiry for our PYP IB program can be found on the Peirce website by visiting here and clicking on the POI document at the bottom of the page. The POI gives a big picture overview of the content studied at each grade level.


You can also find more information on our IB program - both PYP and MYP by visiting here.

ST Math

All students in Kindergarten-8th grade will begin work with a new online math program - ST Math. Over the next month your children will come home talking about Ji Ji the penguin and will want to access the program at home. Once students have been assigned their login information, they can access the online site here, also found on the homepage of the Peirce website. Teachers will share parent-resource information as well once the program is up and running. If you have any questions about the program you can talk with your child’s classroom teacher or Ms. Zaimi.

Box Tops

Box tops are collected on a regular basis and bring in additional dollars to the school - please save box tops throughout the year and turn in during the box tops collection time periods.


Join us on Social Media!

Be sure to “like” us on Facebook - Helen C Peirce School of International Studies is Peirce’s official Facebook Site. In addition, the “Peirce School PSO” has a site along with a closed group “Parents of Peirce” there is a lot of information shared on all 3 sites and are great opportunities to share and receive information along with networking with other parents.


Follow us on Instagram at peircecps.


March 2017 Calendar

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April 2017 Calendar

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