Viking Newsletter

Jim Calabrese, Superintendent, Taft SD 90

November 20, 2022


This week’s student of the week is a kindergarten student, congratulations to Luna Jadron! Luna is a wonderful student who is always ready to learn. Mrs. Troha nominated her, and I couldn’t be happier for her! Here is what Mrs. Troha had to say!


Luna is a wonderful student in my PM kindergarten class. She is always respectful and kind to her classmates. Luna is an excellent student and a great reader. She is friendly to everyone and always has a smile on her face. I am so proud of you, Luna! When Luna is not playing at school with her friends, she likes to play Roblox and Minecraft.


We are so proud of you, Luna!

Subject Level Focus

This week our class highlight is our 4th grade class brought to you by Ms. Kramer! This group is working hard, and Ms. Kramer was nice enough to share with me what they have been up to this week.


This week in 4th grade math we started Chapter 5. Chapter 5 talks about factors, multiples, and number patterns. Students were able to find factor pairs for numbers as well as identify common factors between 2 and/or 3 numbers. In ELA we focused on text structure and different elements of a drama. We read our story for the week and picked apart the text in order to determine how it was structured, which helped us better understand the story. We learned how to identify different parts of a play and how we can use these to better comprehend the story. In social studies, we started learning about the Southern states and their capitals. By the end of next week, students will be able to identify where each Southern state is and what its capital is. I love being able to watch these 4th graders grow and learn throughout the year. They are a fantastic group of students and I cannot wait to see what more they accomplish as the year progresses!


Great work 4th grade, and thanks so much for all you do Ms. Kramer!

Message from Mr. Davini

Just a reminder that our students do not have school this week. Tomorrow is Parent/Teacher Conferences. K-4th grade teachers should have made arrangements to meet with all of their parents while our 5-8th grade conferences are open. Please stop by and see your son or daughter's teachers to hear how they are progressing this year.
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BETA Club Food Drive

BETA Club would love to thank the entire Taft Community for providing so much food for our Thanksgiving Food Drive. Our community provided enough food to create at least 10 complete meals, which will go to other Taft families who may need extra assistance over the holiday season. It is so nice when we can all combine our efforts to try and provide a little help to help other community members. When each of us does a little it certainly adds up to a lot!

Sports Update

The Lady Vikings' Basketball teams played 2 games this week. 7th grade beat Richland and Laraway. 8th grade lost to Richland and beat Laraway. The 7th grade had their first regional game Saturday and won by a score of 28 to 6. They play in the regional championship now Monday at 4:30 at Taft. Come out and support the girls.


The Boys' Basketball teams played 3 tough games this week. 7th grade won 1 out of the 3 beating Elwood. 8th came up short this week. Keep working hard boys.

Health Reminders

Every fall when the weather changes there are some normal sicknesses that seem to spring up that we want to send some reminders home about. As we begin to enter the winter months we always see an increase in flu symptoms, sore throats, lice, pink eye, and other highly contagious sicknesses that we want to help our students avoid. Please remind your kids to wash their hands often, dress appropriately for the weather, avoid sharing food and drinks, and always get a good night's sleep. All of these things are easy to do and can help kids stay healthy and in school during the winter months. Please check out the communicable disease guide from the Will County Health Department below for more information.

Election Information

We have received some questions about the upcoming election for our Board of Education. Please check out the button below for some information from the Illinois Association of School Boards.
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Snack Guidelines from Nurse McGraw

Each family should have received this letter regarding snacks in the classroom. We need to work together as a team to make sure all our students are safe! There is no obligation for any family to bring in treats or snacks for birthdays or holidays; bringing in any kind of snack is strictly on a volunteer basis.


Food allergies are common today for many school-aged children in the United States. With this in mind, we want to ensure a safe and healthy environment in our classrooms for all of our students. The following are basic guidelines that must be followed when sending edible food items to the school for distribution to the classroom. Be aware that there are multiple allergies in our school other than nut allergies that could impact your snack choice. It would be best if you called the school prior to bringing in any snacks and reviewing with the school nurse so we can work as a team to ensure the class will be safe with the snack you choose.


  • All food must be made and /or manufactured in the United States or Canada.

  • All food must be peanut nut/tree nut free and manufactured on a dedicated peanut/tree nut-free line.

  • Homemade food items are NOT allowed.

  • No treat bags unless you choose to fill bags with NON-FOOD items.

  • You may refer to the website https://snacksafely.com/guide/peanut-treenut-free/ to find appropriate snacks that may be acceptable for your child’s classroom.

  • All food /snacks and treats going to the classroom for any celebration ( i.e. birthdays and holidays) must be checked by the School Nurse before going to the classroom AND be individually wrapped AND in their original packaging.

For class parties, food items must be brought in at least 24 hours in advance to ensure adequate time to check all items before going to the classroom.

Physical and Immunization Information

The State of Illinois requires that all students MUST have an Illinois physical exam with up-to-date immunizations on file. Please see below and work with the office to complete these requirements as soon as possible.

Kindergarten:

  • Physical exam on an Illinois form within one year prior to the first day of school with updated immunizations. Must be turned in by October 15, 2022, to avoid EXCLUSION from school.

  • Vision Exam by an Eye Dr. on an Illinois Eye exam form completed and turned in by October 15, 2022.

  • Dental Exam on an Illinois Dental Exam form turned in by May 15, 2023.

2nd Grade:

  • Dental Exam on an Illinois Dental Exam form turned in by May 15, 2023.

6th Grade:

  • Physical Exam (Sports Physical form not acceptable) must be on the State of Illinois Certificate of Child Health Exam form and done within one year prior to the first day of school with up-to-date immunizations.

  • Must be turned in by October 15, 2022, to avoid EXCLUSION from school.

  • Dental exam on an Illinois Dental Exam Form Must be turned in by May 15, 2023.


New students enrolling in an Illinois School for the first time-Required regardless of grade level:

  • Physical Exam with up-to-date immunizations on an Illinois form (due within 30 days of enrollment to district).

  • Vision Exam by an Eye Dr. on an Illinois Eye exam form (due within 30 days of enrollment to district).

e-Learning Plan

We are in the process of completing all of the requirements to have an e-Learning Plan for the 2022-2023 school year. An e-Learning Plan can only be used for emergency days which are typically weather-related. Based on the school code they cannot be used for any emergency shuts downs due to COVID or other related emergencies.


Attached you will see our proposed e-Learning Plan that has been sent to the Regional Office of Education for their approval. We will be sending out more information within the next month or so to ensure we are prepared if an emergency day is needed. Over the past few years, we have decided to cancel school when necessary as early as possible to make sure everyone is as prepared as possible. We plan to continue this practice moving forward.

StopIT

Taft is proud to have the “Stop It” program up and running for the 2021-2022 school year. Stop it is an online program that students can use to report bullying or any unsafe behavior while remaining anonymous. These reports come through to the Superintendent, Principal, and Social Worker via text so we can address the situation right away. This provides the student with an opportunity to share their concerns if they feel they cannot speak immediately to an adult.


We continue to teach our students to advocate for themselves in situations where they feel they can speak to a situation on their own. The students are reminded there are different approaches to stop bullying or unsafe situations outside of reporting things anonymously. Students are encouraged to share concerns with friends, staff, and family to learn to advocate for themselves. However, we understand that there are some situations where students may feel safer reporting discreetly.


If you have any questions regarding the Stop It program, please contact Mr. Davini or Mr. Calabrese.


STOPit Student Launch Video

School Calendar

11/21/22 - Girls Basketball Regionals 4:30 PM

11/21/22 - Parent/Teacher Conference - No School for Students - TBD

11/22/22 - 11/25/22 - Thanksgiving Break

11/28/22 - School Resumes