A Message from the Superintendent

December 20, 2022

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Dear Winnetka Families,

We are reaching out to make you aware of some activity that took place at Hubbard Woods School this morning in an effort to continue to rally our community around the importance of abiding by our safety and security procedures. Hubbard Woods hosted several Winter Sing events in the auditorium today, and prepared for the arrival of families by pre-checking as many visitors as possible through our Raptor ID system to aid a more fluid entry into the auditorium. Families who were not pre-checked had their IDs run upon arrival. A Winnetka Police Officer was also present on campus as an added precaution, given the high number of visitors in the building. This is not atypical for our schools when hosting large events. Visitors are required to go through an ID check process immediately upon entering our buildings at any time during school hours to ensure all visitors are not a safety threat to our students, staff or facility. While this can be an inconvenience, it is a preventative measure of ensuring that our buildings are as safe as possible.

At the conclusion of one of this morning’s Winter Sing performances at Hubbard Woods, parents exiting the building encountered an individual outside of the school who they did not believe was a parent. The individual expressed an interest in accessing the school. Hubbard Woods staff were immediately notified. At no time did the individual enter the school. This person will not be granted access to our schools should he return in the future.

Within a matter of minutes of this incident, all 5 Winnetka Public School buildings were notified, and administration was in further contact with the Winnetka Police. In an abundance of caution, an officer was present to support the afternoon performance at Hubbard Woods, and officers will be present at events in the other buildings during school hours for the remainder of the week. We are grateful for the quick response of our community members and police officers this morning at Hubbard Woods, and have been assured that the building is secure. We understand that instances like this can be alarming and a strong reminder of why we have protocols in place to ensure the safest environments possible. We want our schools to be welcoming places for all, but need to prioritize safety and security when we host visitors and events in our schools. Thank you for taking the time to review this information, and for your support as we enforce our safety protocol in our schools.

Most Sincerely,

Dr. Kelly Tess