Middle School Updates

Shepard Middle School

A New Season...

Happy Fall Spartan Families!!!

The cool morning air has ushered in a new energy around Shepard. It's hard to believe we are only 27 school days into our year, as our 6th, 7th and 8th graders have settled in comfortably with their new classrooms and teachers. The best part about being a school administrator is getting to visit our classrooms to watch learning in action. As we make our way around the building, we are constantly amazed by the creativity, depth of knowledge and perseverance of our students and teachers. Often times, I find myself blown away by the academic challenges our students are tackling, and I walk away thinking....Wow! That was tough. :)

That brings me to a brand new fall challenge I am issuing to our Spartan Family Community...

Are You Smarter Than Your Middle Schooler?

This week we kick things off with a 7th Grade Math Question. Check it out below, click on the question to submit your answer and get a chance to win your first Pumpkin Spice Latte on us.

*1 Rule: You may not ask your middle schooler or the internet for help*

Have a wonderful and relaxing weekend!

Chris Cybulski, Principal

Marie Zlotnikov, Associate Principal

Ginger Logemann, Coordinator for Student Services

Click Here to Check Out Our Extracurricular Calendar


Building students’ social-emotional learning (SEL) skills is important at Shepard. As a part of the learning process, we will be asking our students to reflect on their own SEL mindsets via an online survey. The survey will be administered on Wednesday, October 6 and should take no more than 20 minutes to complete. It asks students to self-reflect on their own grit, growth mindset, self-efficacy, self-management, social awareness, and emotional regulation.

Individual student responses can provide the school and family with insight into what skills the child self-identifies as strengths and others they would like to develop. The overall data helps us (the educators) identify priorities and provide targeted learning opportunities to address the SEL needs in our classrooms.

Per policy, if you would like your child to opt out of taking the survey, please call us at 847-948-0620 no later than Monday, October 4.



  • 6th and 7th graders will receive their locks in class
  • 8th graders should use their locks from 6th grade. If a new lock is needed, they will be available for purchase in the office ($7)


  • Students will be introduced to our locker protocols, the location of their locker and will have time to get situated during Homeroom


  • All students have been assigned a locker (students have seen their locker numbers in Skyward)
  • Locker use will be optional and students may continue to carry their backpacks if they choose to do so

Student Health Requirements 21-22

We recognize and are mindful of the fact that many families may have had difficulty getting children in for physical, dental, and eye exams as the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has presented many challenges to routine medical care; however, at this time, all child-health related requirements for school attendance, remain in effect for children in public, private, or parochial schools, as per 105 ILCS 5/27-8.1.

Health-related examinations and immunization requirements are due no later than October 15. Please click here to be directed to our website for detailed information regarding specific requirements by grade level.

You will soon be receiving communication from our building nurse if your child is missing any of the required documentation. Students not in compliance with the health examination and immunization requirements will be excluded from school beginning Friday, October 15, 2021. Please reach out with any questions regarding these requirements as we want to partner with you to ensure compliance with these requirements. Thank you.

SHIELD Testing (Weekly Opt Out Form)

Our SHIELD Testing will take place on Tuesday, September 28.
  • If your student has consent to test, we will assume they will come down during their scheduled time (a reminder announcement will be made for each time slot.
  • SHIELD Testing remains optional. If for any reason you do not want your child to submit a test sample on Tuesday, September 28, please click here.

If you have questions, please call our office at 847-948-0620

Upcoming Dates

October 6 - Panorama Survey for Students

October 11 - No School

October 19 - Picture Re-Take Day

October 25 - Quarter 2 begins

October 29 - Halloween Costumes (optional)

Big picture


The daily health certifications, bus route info, schedules, and more helpful info can be found on the new Shepard Middle School Website. Make sure to give it a look!

Daily Certification Process

We are asking all families to submit the certification form by 7:15am each morning.

District Resources

Big picture


Last night, the DPS 109 Board of Education held their September meeting. You can read the brief recap of the meeting here, which includes a link to the full recording of the meeting. We are sending this as part of the principal's newsletter to cut down on the number of emails you receive!


We have new information posted about our COVID case notification process, testing opportunities for symptomatic students, and a guide on what to do if your child wakes up sick in the morning (and what it may mean for other children in your home). Visit www.dps109.org/Fall2021 for the latest.


This year, fewer students are needing to be quarantined if they are a close contact to a COVID-19 case, thanks to the Lake County Health Department's "Test To Stay" protocol. Click here to read more from the district about it.


DPS 109 will be offering testing for symptomatic students Monday through Friday afternoons during the school year. The BinaxNOW test will be administered outside of the District Office in the beige testing building (please look for sign on door). Testing is free of charge to families. Click here to read more about testing.


It’s always a tough situation when this happens in the morning! Be sure to read this section in our COVID information hub, especially if you have multiple children enrolled in DPS 109. Our school exclusion guidance comes from the Illinois Department of Public Health.