WJHS Highlights


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A Message from the Administrative Team

Hi WJHS Families,

As we do regularly, we revisited our dress code in September, surveying staff, families and students. While many families were okay with the dress code as-is, the top three requests we received were:

  • removal of the "distraction" language
  • hats and hoods should be allowed
  • midriff should not be considered a private part

After conversations with staff and students, our finalized dress code can be found at this link. You will notice at the bottom it reads, "Teachers set expectations for their classroom. For example, if a teacher is unable to identify whether or not a student is fully engaged in the classroom because a hat is covering the student’s face, teachers may ask students to remove their hats during class.".

I use this example because this was one of my classroom expectations when I was an eighth grade English teacher. In order for me to know that my students were engaged in instruction, listening to me and their peers, and participating in class, when students entered my room they hung their hat on a hook. Please know that, just as students are expected to dress in appropriate clothing and shoes to participate in physical education, teachers may ask students to dress for full engagement in the classroom.

Please don't hesitate to reach out if you have any questions. We hope you enjoy this very fall-like weekend!


Kate, Jeff and Eric


We hosted a successful Ribbon Cutting ceremony on Monday, 10/18 with local officials, the PTO Exec Board and members of the press. Click here for a link to an article about the event in The Record. See below for more photos and an article from Wilmette Life. Your support of the PTO made this possible! THANK YOU!

Parent/Teacher Conferences

We are excited to host Virtual Parent Teacher Conferences again this year! Despite that virtual conferences were created due to COVID restrictions, we received a lot of positive feedback about the efficiency they provided last year. We hope they continue to run smoothly and provide an opportunity for you to meet your child's teachers!

  • The online sign-up system is scheduled to go "live" on Monday, October 25th and stay open through 11:59pm on Monday, November 8th. An email will be sent to parents on Friday, October 22nd with specific sign up information.

  • Conferences cannot be scheduled outside of the designated days.

  • Each conference will be 5 minutes in length

Conferences will be held:

November 10:

5:00 - 8:30 PM

November 11:

9:00 AM - 12:00 PM

1:00 - 3:00 PM

5:00 - 8:30 PM

November 12:

8:30 AM - 12:30 PM

Winter Sports are Coming!

Winter athletics registration for girls and boys Basketball, Dance and Wrestling will open on Monday, October 18th. Please visit the athletics website for the link to registration and the forms needed for participation.

  • 7th and 8th grade basketball tryouts will be Monday October 25th - Wed. Oct. 27th.
  • Dance clinics/tryouts will be held October 25-29th.
  • Wrestling registration will also open at that time. Wrestling is also hosting open mat wrestling sessions at Highcrest every Tuesday and Thursday until the season starts on November 29th.
  • Dance Tryouts will be in the cafeteria after school today.
  • 7th and 8th grade basketball tryouts will be today October 25th - Wed. Oct. 27th.
  • Girls Basketball tryouts will be at WJHS from 3:20 - 4:45
  • Boys Basketball Tryouts will be at HMS from 3:45 - 5:30
  • Wrestling registration is also open. Open mats are Tuesday and Thursdays.

LAB 39 is Coming Back! Parent Volunteers Needed!

LAB 39 After-School STEM Enrichment will return after Thanksgiving for 5th-8th grade science-lovers in D39! All classes are taught by dedicated parent and community volunteers. No prior teaching experience is necessary; just bring your love for science! If you are interested in leading a class, please complete the survey through the link below to indicate which courses might be of interest to you, and what days/times you are available. https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/XYJQJ3Q

Parent Education Events

In case you missed the parent education event, Learning About The Responsive Classroom Model and Tips to Take Home, the presentation recording can be found here.

Our next parent education event is Wednesday, November 17th at 11am. It is titled Supporting Friendship Development and Connection. Please Register Here.

Tech Tidbit

Technology is useful and can make our lives easier. It can also help keep your pet safe and make it easier to communicate with your pets. Just like activity trackers people have to keep track of their wellness, pet ‘wearables’ are becoming more popular. Whistle or Fitbark can help track the health of your pet to be aware of possible illnesses. They also have a built-in GPS tracker that can help if your pet gets out. Bluetooth trackers, like Tile and Apple Airtag, can be hooked to your pet’s collar to keep track of them. Programmable bells, like the Mighty Paw Smart Bell, can help your pet indicate to go outside or even to notify you when they want to come back inside. It can be installed indoors or out with wireless transmitters that allow it to be heard anywhere in your house. A more advanced way to communicate with your pet is to use recordable buttons, like Fluent Pet, where your pet can press buttons, such as treat, potty, play and walk, that you recorded to communicate with you. Setting up cameras in your home to check on your dog while you are away can help keep your pet safe but also happy. Cameras, like Furbo, allows for you to see what your pet is up to but also gives you the ability to interact with your pet while you are away. You are able to communicate with your pet and dispense treats to it. These are just a few of the modern technologies that can help your pet.

8th Grade Graduation

8th grade graduation will be Wednesday, June 8. Please save the date! More details to follow in the coming months ahead.

PTO Highlights

Help Stock the Shelves - NEXT WEEK - WJHS Staff Lounge

Thanks to all who have signed up so far! The PTO Staff Appreciation Committee has organized a Stock the Shelves event this month. Now that school is in full swing, let’s fill the staff lounge with treats & refreshments during the week of 25-29 October by using the SignUp Genius link: https://m.signupgenius.com/#!/showSignUp/10c0f49a5ab2aa6fcc43-wjhs SignUp for item(s) and then fulfill your SignUp by either:

(1) dropping off at WJHS front door vestibule anytime during the week 10/25-10/29 OR

(2) order via Amazon and ship (anytime in October) to: Wilmette Junior High School, Attn: Staff Lounge, 620 Locust Rd., Wilmette, IL 60091.

Questions? Contact Julie Farina staffappreciation@wjhspto.com

Donate to Highcrest’s Make A Difference Day

The D39 community is partnering with the Volunteer Center of the North Shore for National Make a Difference Day on 10/23/21. Many items will be collected: clothes, jackets, books, toys, sporting equipment. See flyer below.

Attention 7th Grade Parents!

Register now through November 15th, 2021 to receive a $100 early bird discount for next year’s DC Trip. For more information and registration: https://worldstrides.com/custom/wilmette-jr-hs-dc-wb-199281/

(note: the DC trip is not sponsored by D39, WJHS or the PTO, for more information email Paul Harper at harperp@wilmette39.org)

WJHS & New Trier Spiritwear!

Choose your item, customize and ship or pick up your finished spiritwear locally!

For WJHS go here

For New Trier go here

(great gifts for the 8th graders who will attend New Trier!)


If you are interested in helping at WJHS during the 2021-2022 school year, please sign up here! At this time, the PTO is working on determining where and when parents can help, and we will reach out to you as opportunities arise. Thank you for your interest in volunteering at WJHS!


Immediate directory access here

✅ Contribute to the Teacher/Staff gift and iGNITE funds here

✅ Purchase a yearbook here

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New Trier High School Level Placement Test

New Trier High School will be administering a placement test for WJHS 8th grade students on Saturday, November 13. Further details regarding the test will be mailed out by New Trier in early October.

District Update

Board of Education Meeting on Monday

The D39 Board of Education will hold its regular monthly meeting next Monday, Oct. 25 at 7 pm. Click here for access to the complete meeting agenda and materials. As you know, we have been working hard on next steps to help us with implementation of our strategic plan and during this meeting, the Board will hear a presentation on our action steps for the 2021-22 school year. We are excited to share this information with the Board and get to work on putting our plan into action. Please click here for more information on our District 39 Strategic Plan: Engage, Empower, Inspire.

IAR Score Reports

District 39 has received Illinois Assessment of Readiness (IAR) results for individual students who completed the assessment last school year - Spring 2021. These results reflect English Language Arts and Mathematics achievement for the 2020-21 school year. During the week of October 25, students’ paper score reports will be sent home to families. The IAR Spring 2021 Score Interpretation Guide provides helpful information on how to understand the reports. Additionally, Pearson has created a Parent Portal that allows families to access their child’s IAR test results digitally. Directions on how to set up your digital parent portal account are included with the paper report, along with the code needed to establish your account. The information in the portal is the same as the reports being sent home. Please look for your child’s paper score report next week. Please note, Pearson’s platform only produced a score report for families whose children completed all aspects of the IAR assessment in spring.

Parent-Teacher Conferences

Our teachers are excited to host parent-teacher conferences in November. Please review the information regarding registration that was provided to families via email today. Registration for conferences will open on Monday morning at 9:00 am.

Response to Illness Booklet Update

This week, the Illinois Department of Public Health made a couple of adjustments to its COVID-19 Interim Exclusion Guidance for Schools Decision Tree. Click here to see the updated decision tree and click here for our updated D39 Response to Illness Booklet.

Ribbon Cutting for Wilmette Junior High Courtyards

This week, we celebrated the renovated and reimagined courtyards at WJHS with a ribbon-cutting ceremony. A special thank you to the WJHS PTO for their hard work on this project and to all of our community members who played a role in transforming those spaces into a great resource for our students! Click here and here (Tribune subscription required) to read more about the event.

Community News

LINK: http://www.wilmette39.org/news/community_events

PEDAL POWER is collecting gently used bicycles to award Chicago Public School Honor Roll students. Please donate used bicycles on November 13th, 9:00 a.m. - 12:00 noon. Drop off locations are listed on the flyer posted on the website.

PICKLES EMPOWER is hosting fall sessions/activities from October 18 - November 19 for 1st - 12th graders with a parent/guardian being treated for cancer or requiring close monitoring for disease progression. Information and links are posted on the Community News site.

The Volunteer Center is offering many volunteer service opportunities. Make a Difference Day, October 23rd, donate gently used and new goods to benefit over a dozen community nonprofits.

Wilmette Food Pantry is open every Tuesday 10:00-11:00 am at Trinity United Methodist Church.

"Best Step Tutoring” offers free online tutoring for PreK-12 grades.

For 5th - 8th grade Girls:

Regina Dominican Panthers Basketball Coaching Staff is hosting FUNdamentals Clinic November 7th, 14th and 21st. 5th-6th grades: 9:00-10:00 am and 7th-8th grades: 10:00 - 11:00 am. ($25 fee)