Cardinal Corner

August 16 - September 1 2019-2020

Important Dates

Aug 19-21- Cross Country Summer Practice, 3:30-4:30pm

Aug 22 - First Day of School, 7:45am-2:45pm

Aug 22-23 - Cross Country Summer Practice, 2:45-4:15pm

Aug 27 - Cross Country vs Sandburg @ SMS, 3-6pm

Aug 27 - 6th Grade Curriculum Night

Aug 29 - Cross Country @ Plum Grove, 3-6pm

Aug 30 - Picture Day

Aug 30 - Cross Country @ Prospect Invite at PHS

Sept 2 - Labor Day, No School

Principal Column

Dear South School Families,

The 2019-20 school year is approaching quickly and SMS administration and staff are very excited about the coming school year. Please remember, the first day of school for students is Thurs., Aug. 22, 2019. Students are required to attend the entire day. We will be running a modified schedule on the first day, so students and staff can get organized in their Homebase class.

Please be mindful that many parents drive their child to school on the first day, which increases traffic and slows down normal student drop off. Do not double park or stay idle by the side of the street. Once your child has exited your car, please immediately and safely, drive away. Be aware that students may try to move between cars. Parent cooperation is imperative for the proper safety of all students. The area directly in front of the building is designated as a fire lane. Therefore, there should be no unattended vehicles parked in that area. Visitor parking is provided in the small lot in front of the building and in the big lot to the north of the building. Please do not drop off or pick up your child(ren) in the North Staff Parking Lot or the bus lane. Also, according to Public Act 96-0131 it is illegal to use cellphones in school zones. We greatly appreciate your cooperation in providing a safe environment for all our students.

From the front of the building, eighth grade students will enter through the center doorway, #2. Seventh grade students will enter through the main entrance doorway, #1. Sixth grade students will enter the south-east doorway, #3. There will be several staff and administrators outside to help guide students. Students line up at the door and enter the school 7:45am. Students need to be in Homebase by 7:50am.

Please make sure your child is prepared for Picture Day, Fri., Aug. 30, 2019. This picture will be used for your child's yearbook picture.

We will be performing our emergency crisis drills during the first few weeks of school. You will be informed of the dates in the near future.

The beginning of the school year is aways exciting. Please start having your child go to sleep at normal school day hours so he/she can get accustomed to waking at school hours.

We look forward to seeing our 2019-2020 South Cardinals!

Dr. Jim Morrison, Principal

South Middle School

Recent Staff Changes

There have been recent changes in South staff since Homebase letters were mailed.

Due to personal reasons, Ms. Vanessa Fischer and Ms. Jenn Field have resigned their positions as language arts teacher on the eighth grade West Team and math teacher for the sixth grade West Team.

We are fortunate to welcome Mrs. Liz Colicchia into the role of language arts teacher on the eighth grade West Team. Mrs. Colicchia comes to South with a wide range of teaching experience at the middle school level. For the past two year she has served as a Social Studies, Language Arts/Advanced Language Arts teacher at Thomas Middle School. Throughout her teaching career she has also served as Differentiation Specialist Coach and an RtI teacher at the middle school level.

We are confident in Mrs. Colicchia’s experience as well as her expertise, and know she will be a great asset to our 8th grade students. We look forward to having Mrs. Colicchia as a member of the eighth grade West Team.

In regards to Homebase placements, all teams and room numbers assignments will remain the same. But, the teacher assignments will be adjusted. Mrs. Colicchia will be responsible for Homebase 8W-5, room 346. Mrs. Demeter will manage 6E-8 in room 131.

We are in the process of hiring for the sixth grade math position. We are fortunate enough to have Mrs. Kay Zimmanck, retired South math teacher, substituting for South until this position will be filled.

I will keep you posted on our progress in hiring a math teacher.


Thurs., Aug. 22, 2019, will be the First Day of School! Plan for your child to be at the bus stop on time or at school by 7:30am.

Our doors will open at 7:40am!

HOMEBASE/Advisory Overview

Homebase/Advisory at South Middle School is an important component of our overall school program. Students will meet in their Homebase classes on the first day of school for an extended period of time, and it will always be their first period of the school day.

“In’s and Out’s” of South

Here is a link to some “In’s and Out’s” and procedures of South Middle School. It is a reference for South Middle School families. We reinforce and detail key information in our Arlington Heights School District 25 Student/Parent Handbook along with information and procedures specific to South Middle School. Families need to review both the District Handbook and this document to begin each new school year.

District 25 Student/Parent Handbook

Here is a link to D25's 2019-2020 Parent Handbook Please take the time to review the handbook with your child prior to the first day of school, Thur., August 22, 2019.

Bus Transportation

Closer to the students’ first day of school, the District 25 Business/Transportation Office will send a separate mailing home to families who registered online for transportation confirming bus assignments, routes, procedures, etc. You can find information for the Business/Transportation Department on the District 25 website.

Student Schedules

Student Schedules: A complete 10-period daily schedule will be provided to your child during homebase on the first day of school, Thurs. Aug. 22, 2019.

South Daily Bell Schedule

We have included our daily bell schedule. Morning drop-off and supervision begins at 7:30am. Student dismissal is at 2:45pm. While our school day start and end times will always remain the same, we will follow a revised first day bell/period schedule to allow students and teachers more time together.

Big picture


Through the online registration process, we should have your most up-to-date contact information, including email address, etc. We do many communications through our School Messenger system, occasionally automated phone messages/text messages, however we will primarily use email to contact you. It is important to keep the school office regularly updated with your preferred contact information at

Additionally, we will continue to update our main South web page featuring: Announcements, electronic flyers/forms, staff contact information, calendar events, videos, etc. Families can also follow us at Twitter @AHSD25South and Facebook. We are always looking for additional ways to enhance home/school communication. These are some of the most immediate ways for families to be connected to South Middle School to start the year.

Food Service

Students have the option of bringing their lunches from home or ordering through our District 25 Food Service. Students have an assigned number to identify with their lunch accounts. That number follows them school year to school year. We will review these numbers with sixth graders and new students to begin the school year and show how to navigate the food service line, use the keypad, etc. Parents can use an online payment system or send payment with their students to drop off in the main office. More information can be found at the above link.

6th Grade Summer Orientation and Chill Out

We had impressive attendance for the Sixth Grade Summer Orientation and Chill Out on Friday. I want to thank the South staff and the eighth grade students who organized and guided the sixth graders throughout the building and helping them learn how to open their lockers.

Also, a big thank you to South's PTA president, Catherine Olson, and volunteers: Cristina Small, Tracy Kruger, Lilianne Corwin, and Lauren Rogers for a wonderful Chill Out event. Students were treated to Frozen Ice and raffle prizes.

Hopefully, the sixth grader's visit will reduce the nerves and anxiety of starting the school year for our our young students.

Bedtime Stories Auditions

ATTENTION CARDINALS! Auditions for our fall play, Bedtime Stories (As told by our dad) (Who messed them up), will take place Aug. 27, 28, and 29, 2019, after school in room 232. Please see the information below to sign-up and prepare for an audition! Please see Mrs. Lange in room 232 with questions.

Please review and complete ALL steps before auditioning!

1. Choose and sign-up for an audition slot using the sign-up genius- you only need to sign up ONCE! Please use your D25 email address.

2. Complete the required contact form by clicking this link, or visiting the link on the SMS website.

3. Print and complete the audition permission slip - hard copies will also be available outside room 232 in the days leading up to the audition. You will turn this slip in when you audition.

4. PRINT and choose ONE audition monologue. You may also prepare a monologue of your own if you don't want to use one that is provided. Hard copies will also be available outside room 232 in the days leading up to auditions. Memorization is encouraged but not required.


Aug. 27, 2019 - 6th Grade Parent Curriculum Night @ 6:30-8:30pm.

Sept. 12, 2019 - 7th & 8th Grade Parent Curriculum Night @ 6:30-8:30pm.


Physical Forms Required for ALL 6th Graders: All sixth grade students need a physical form completed by Tues., Oct. 15, 2019. During this time of year the doctor’s offices can get overwhelmed with physical appointments, so please plan ahead!

2019 South Middle School Golf

From Mr. O'Grady:

South state qualifying competition is open to both boys and girls who will be in grades 6th-8th during the 2019-20 school year. Students are invited to try-out for the opportunity to represent South Middle School at the IESA State Golf Tournament at Kellogg Golf Course in Peoria on Saturday, September 14, 2019. This competition is geared toward student athletes that are experienced golfers and have a firm understanding of golf rules and etiquette. This opportunity is not for the beginner or inexperienced golfer. Tryout will consist of 9 holes of golf at Arlington Lakes on Monday, August 12, @ 11:30. In order to have the chance to golf at the state meet, players must finish in the top 4 at our qualifying round, then make the cut at sectional competition. Students will be responsible for the green fees of $10 associated with try-outs. Checks can be made out to AHSD25 and dropped off at SMS c/o Phil O’Grady by Friday, August 10. Any questions contact Coach O’Grady at


1) Tryouts will be held Monday, August 12 from 11:30am – 2:30pm @ Arlington Lakes Golf Club. Top 4 male and top 4 female scores/players from this event will represent SMS at sectionals on Wednesday, Sept 4.

2) Top 4 boys & top 4 girls will compete in sectional competition on Wednesday, September 4th. Golf sites for sectionals TBD.

3) Boys and girls IESA State Golf Tournament will be at Kellogg Golf Course on Saturday, September 14.

** Students must have a current physical on file with our school nurse

______ Yes, I will be attending the tryout and agree with the requirements listed above.

_________________________________ Student Name

__________________________________Parent Signature

__________________________________Email Address


From: Ms. Vassos and Mr. Frintner

Welcome to the 2019 Cross Country season!!! Here is some information as we begin our season:

PHYSICALS: you need to have a current physical (within the past 13 months) on file in the nurse’s office before you can join us for practice. If you are unsure about your status, contact the school office, and someone will be able to help you.

SUMMER PRACTICES: If you are available, we would love for you to join us for practices before the official beginning of the school year.

Practices are as follows:

7th and 8th graders:

Monday, August 12: 8–9:15am

Tuesday, August 13: 8–9:15am

Wednesday, August 14: 3:30–4:30pm (coaches have tech academy)

Thursday, August 15: 8–9:15am

Incoming Sixth grade students:

Since we haven’t had the opportunity to meet you yet, we need you to bring a copy of your most current physical to us on the first day that you attend. You are more than welcome to join us starting this week:

Monday, August 19: 3:30–4:30pm (coaches have school)

Tuesday, August 20: 3:30–4:30pm (coaches have school)

Wednesday, August 21: 3:30–4:30pm (coaches have school)

Thursday, August 22 (First day of school)

Practice: 2:45-4:15pm

Friday, August 23: 2:45- 4pm

If you haven’t been that physically active, you will be in a much better position at the beginning of our season if you start now! We recommend that you run 30-40 minutes at least 4 times a week (at a relaxed pace) starting now.

Contact Mr. Frintner at or Ms. Vassos with any questions.

We are looking forward to seeing all of you really soon!!!