North Cook ISC

March 2021 News Chat

North Cook ISC / ROE 5

LOOK to NORTH COOK for Professional Development, Networking & Informational Meetings, Principal Mentoring, Licensure, Fingerprinting and more!

A Message from Dr. Kevin Jauch

It was about one year ago that Governor Pritzker placed Illinois under a disaster declaration that shut down all but essential operations. While many of us, myself included, optimistically thought we could let this “run its course", few understood that we would still be in the throes of COVID-19 a full year later. Fortunately as the weather warms and days get longer, there is renewed optimism on the COVID front. Vaccines are coming available, community metrics are trending in the right direction, and restrictions are loosening.

But with variants in the community and until a greater percentage of citizens get vaccinated, it’s not quite time to celebrate. Like a football player with a free run to the end zone who casually drops the ball before the goal line, we can’t let up quite yet. Please continue to mask, maintain your social distance, and follow all the other mediations that we know will see us through to the end. We’re getting there! / 847.824.8300

Illinois Teacher Shortage

The annual survey just released by IARSS shows the severity of the teacher shortage across Illinois. In suburban Cook County, sixty-seven percent (67%) of school districts reported teacher shortages. The shortage of regular classroom teachers and substitute teachers has translated into cancelled classes, classes moved online, additional costs for districts to hire more teachers, and hundreds of unfulfilled or underfilled positions. Covid-19 has only exacerbated the situation, and the majority of schools expect the teacher shortage to worsen.

As a result, IARSS will examine many facets of the shortage and suggest solutions in the coming months. That could include finding new ways to educate students, removing obstacles to licensing, addressing teacher salaries, and expanding and partnering with school districts to find quality candidates. See the full IARSS report, which includes an interactive map with specific data by region.

NEW! North Cook ISC now links to job opportunities in each of its 40+ member districts on our website.

Short-Term Substitute Teacher Training

Register Now for the April 7th class.

Big picture

professional development - virtual through August 2021

Administrator Academies

See the complete list of Administrator Academies*.

* Sessions are conducted virtually via Zoom unless noted otherwise.

  • Teacher Evaluator Competency Skill Building for Pre-Qualified Teacher Evaluators (AA 1451) - March 19
  • Compassion Fatigue and Burnout: Is Your Staff At Risk? (AA 3640)
  • Manage Your Time or Time Will Manage You (AA 1444) - April 12
  • Illinois Performance Evaluation: Teacher Evaluation Training (AA 2001) - April 15 & 16
  • Principal Evaluator Competency Skill Building (AA 1865) - April 20
  • Teacher & Administrator Evaluator Training: Student Growth (AA 3000) - April 30

We can also bring an Administrator Academy to your team, virtually or in-person, depending on current Covid safety protocols. Contact Dr. April Jordan at or 847.803.5604 to schedule a session.

Virtual Educator Workshops

Informational Meetings

Camp Invention® Summer STEM Programs

March 18, 9:00-10:00 am or 3:30-4:30 pm (session repeated)

Learn more about Camp Invention® Summer STEM Programs. These are nationally recognized (Grades K-6 or 7-9) summer enrichment programs that have reached children across the country for 30+ years. Camp Invention® can be configured to meet your district's needs, i.e., virtual, in-person, one week, multiple weeks, half day, full-day, etc.

Camp Invention® is backed by independent research, inspired by lessons from world-changing inventors and designed to spark imaginations through open-ended engagement in creative problem-solving. The curriculum is aligned to the NGSS standards and state standards.

Keeping Homeless Students Engaged

North Cook schools have lost close to 22 percent of McKinney-Vento students since last year when COVID-19 began. In our last newsletter, we introduced you to Julie Kopf, our new Academic Navigator for McKinney-Vento eligible students. Julie can help you find students that did not return and keep current students who are experiencing homelessness engaged in eLearning and hybrid programs.

Julie has worked firsthand as an interim social worker with students, counselors, teachers, and administrators. She recognizes that many homeless students require structure in order to be successful. Julie looks forward to working with North Cook districts to help students and families reunite with their school and be successful!

Please join us at our next Zoom Roundtable to meet Julie along with Paula Miller, NCISC Truancy Officer, when we'll discuss strategies for student success and ways we can best help serve you and your district. Register using the link below.

March 17th, 1:00 - 3:00 pm

Keeping Our McKinney-Vento Students in School

Congratulations, Spelling Bee Winners!

Congratulations to winners of the North Cook Spelling Bee held on March 3rd at Gemini Middle School in East Maine School District 63!

1st Place: Elaine Xu - Highcrest Middle School, Wilmette District 39

2nd Place (tie): Isaac Margolis - Wood Oaks Jr High, Northbrook District 27; Caitlyn Kim - St. Andrews Lutheran School, Park Ridge

These three students will advance to the Regional Spelling Bee at McClure Jr. High in Western Springs, IL on March 16th. The National Spelling Bee will be held July 8th in Orlando, FL.

Thank you to ComEd, who is a generous sponsor of the suburban Cook County and Regional Spelling Bee.

Big picture
Pictured L to R: Dr. Kevin Jauch, North Cook ISC Regional Superintendent - Judge; Spelling Bee winners; Dr. Robert Sloan, UIC Department Chair & Professor - Pronouncer; Margot Fennelly, Spelling Bee Grant Coordinator & North Cook ISC Consultant

Licensure Lingo

Licensure renewal for all licenses due in 2021 will begin April 1st. This includes the Professional Educator License (PEL), various Career and Technical Educator (CTE) licenses, the Substitute (SUB) license, and the Paraprofessional (PARA) license. It is recommended that every licensed individual verify through their ELIS account if they hold a license that is only registered until June 30, 2021.

  • The Expires date in the ELIS account will display an individual’s year of renewal.
  • Individuals should also check their Expires vs. Registered Through Date in ELIS – these years need to match. If the Expiration Date is after the Registered Through Date, additional registration fees are required to prevent the license from lapsing.
  • If the Registered Through Date is blank, then registration fees have never been paid and are required to prevent the license from lapsing.

Educators with a PEL and/or CTE license that expires July 1, 2021 will have until August 31, 2021 to complete any Professional Development (PD) required for renewal and pay all registration fees.

If not renewed by September 1, 2021, the license will lapse and the individual will no longer be eligible to work in an Illinois public school until the license is reinstated. To reinstate the license, the individual must complete 9 semester hours of coursework in the appropriate content area(s) OR pay a $500 penalty fee, in addition to submitting any required PD prior to reinstating and paying registration fees.

More information can be found on the Licensure page of our website.

Contact Shirley Bloom, Director of Certification/Licensure, at or Izabela Kuczek, Licensure Specialist, at for assistance.

Teacher of the Year / Those Who Excel Awards

Nominations for Teacher of the Year must be received by April 23rd and completed applications must be received by May 21st for:

  • Outstanding Teachers, all levels & subject areas with 5+ years of experience
  • Bilingual Teacher of the Year
  • Early Childhood Teacher of the Year
  • Special Education Teacher of the Year
  • and a separate category for Outstanding Early Career Educator with 1-4 years experience

Applications for Those Who Excel awards must be received by May 21st in these categories:

  • Administrator
  • Team
  • Community Volunteer
  • Student Support Personnel
  • Educational Service Personnel

Celebrating Black History Month

In honor of Black History Month, the North Cook Young Adult Academy staff reserved time each week to educate students on the remarkable contributions African Americans have made to our country and how these individuals positively impact us today.

Students engaged in meaningful discussions that included:

  • Berry Gordy’s impact on the music industry

  • James Baldwin’s narrative voice in conveying racism

  • Nina Turner’s utilization of oratory skills to speak about controversial topics

  • Jackie Robinson’s ongoing influence in Major League Baseball

  • Rapper KRS-One’s articulation of racial issues using a unique style of hip-hop

  • 11 Famous African American mathematicians (Benjamin Banneker, Fern Hunt, Mark Dean, Lonnie Johnson, Annie Easley, Elbert Frank Cox, Carol Mae Jemison, Valerie Thomas, Katherine Johnson, Euphemia Lofton Haynes, and John Urschel)

In addition, science teacher Catherine Finn presented an insightful lesson on skin color. Ms. Finn taught students how human skin color is an evolutionary adaptation to the varying intensity of ultraviolet radiation in different parts of the world. She emphasized skin color is strictly an evolutionary adaptation and that people should never be judged based on their skin color. Students and staff were provided a picture of themselves with their skin color removed, and then chose from a variety of Crayola crayons to re-color their photo. Some of the pictures are now displayed in the NCYAA hallway.

“I look to a day when people will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character.” Martin Luther King, Jr.

April 6 - Student Services

April 9 - Curriculum & Instruction

April 23 - Instructional Technology Coaches

April 27 - Technology Directors

April 29 - Buildings & Grounds

We are Open to Serve You

Our Des Plaines office is open to serve you; however, appointments must be made in advance to meet with our staff. For the health and safety of everyone, walk-ins are not permitted until further notice. Please call 847-824-8300 before coming to our office.

You can always reach us by voicemail or email. For information pertaining to specific departments at North Cook, please see our Contact Info for details.

North Cook Intermediate Service Center

Hours: Monday - Friday 8:00 AM - 4:00 PM

Special Holiday Hours:

CLOSED April 2 - Spring Break