Pirate's Cove

Weekly Newsletter - May 5-14

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Asian Pacific American Heritage Month - May

May is Asian/Pacific American Heritage Month is a celebration of Asians and Pacific Islanders in the United States. Asian/Pacific encompasses all of the Asian continent and the Pacific islands of Melanesia (New Guinea, New Caledonia, Vanuatu, Fiji and the Solomon Islands), Micronesia (Marianas, Guam, Wake Island, Palau, Marshall Islands, Kiribati, Nauru and the Federated States of Micronesia) and Polynesia (New Zealand, Hawaiian Islands, Rotuma, Midway Islands, Samoa, American Samoa, Tonga, Tuvalu, Cook Islands, French Polynesia and Easter Island).

Asian/Pacific American Heritage Month originated with Congress. This resolution proposed that the President should “proclaim a week, which is to include the seventh and tenth of the month, during the first ten days in May of 1979 as ‘Asian/Pacific American Heritage Week.’” During the next decade, presidents passed annual proclamations for Asian/Pacific American Heritage Week until 1990 when Congress expanded the observance to a month for 1990. Then in 1992, Congress designated May as Asian/Pacific American Heritage Month.

The month of May was chosen to commemorate the immigration of the first Japanese to the United States on May 7, 1843, and to mark the anniversary of the completion of the transcontinental railroad on May 10, 1869. The majority of the workers who laid the tracks were Chinese immigrants.

Principal's Message

Pirate parents and students,

In this newsletter, you will find information about our 8th grade awards and recognition ceremony, as well as a sign up for time slots for the event through Jot form. We are also working on our Video presentation for our 6th grade Step Up. Information for both can be found further in the newsletter.

We are nearing the end of the second semester and the school year. Grades are being updated regularly from teachers, and communication is going out to all families of students who are struggling academically. I highly encourage families to use time from 1:05 to 2:15 to review Tyler SIS with your child when they are home. If grades are not where they should be, find missing work in Google Classroom and/or reach out to the classroom teacher.

Maintaining work and having accurately reflected grades will ensure that students are placed in the appropriate classes next year. If your child has failing or near failing grades, students are expected to attend the students support times from 2:15 - 3:00. This is a time that is available for all students to ask questions, get help, or check in with teachers. I encourage all families to treat this time like it is a class.

The staff at Plank Junior High is committed to serving the students and parents of the surrounding community. If you have questions, please do not hesitate to contact me, and we can work together to find solutions. I can be reached at 630-551-9400 and thaymond@sd308.org. We look forward to partnering with you and your child throughout the year.

Pirates Persevere!

Always in partnership,

Tyler Haymond


Plank Junior High School

Important upcoming dates

5/14/2021 - Deadline for Returning Student Registration extended

5/25/2021 - 8th Grade Awards and Recognition Night and video share

5/26/2021 - Last Day of School

Pirates in the News!

On Thursday, April 22nd, District 308 held its annual Junior High District Math Competition. After a strenuous 20 question test, the results were tallied.

Taking First Place honors in 6th grade individual competition was Clay Amegashie-Caref. Felix Pilny took 2nd Place for 7th grade and Jenna Bouley took 3rd Place for 8th grade.

And the winning school overall was...... PLANK JUNIOR HIGH!

Great Job Pirates !!!!

2021-2022 School Year Registration is OPEN

Registration for the 2021-2022 school year is open in Tyler for returning students. Some components of the registration process are not functional on a mobile device at this time. Registration need to be completed using a computer. Returning registration is open in Tyler through May 14, 2021.

Once the registration process closes in Tyler, re-registering a student can no longer be done by the parent and the school will need to process the request. It is critical for schools to work hard to ensure as many parents/guardians as possible complete the process prior to the closure of the window.

Return to school in August will resume full-time, five days per week. Students who qualify for an exemption from in-person attendance based upon a medical need of the student or a housemate will require a medical provider to complete an exemption request form and return it to the district.

8th Grade Awards & Recognition

8th Grade Students and Families,

Plank will be presenting the 8th Grade Awards and Recognition night event virtually again this year. While we are disappointed that we cannot offer an opportunity for us to celebrate as a whole community, we will expand on what we did last year to include an in-person aspect to the event. For our in-person portion of the event, families can come to Plank where students will receive their recognition and award certificates and have the opportunity to take pictures to remember the year. This event will take place on Tuesday, May 25 from 4:00 - 7:00 pm. Our hope is for families to view the virtual portion of the event at the suggested time of 7:30 PM so we can view it as a community. However, since we all have unique circumstances, you are welcome to view the event at a time that works for your family. We will push out the 8th Grade Promotion Night video digitally through Blackboard via a link on Tuesday, May 25.

For us to do this in a safe and organized manner, we are reserving 22 spots every 15 minutes. Families are welcome to coordinate with each other so students have the opportunity to celebrate with friends during that 15 minutes as well as off site if desired. Please use this form to select the time frame that works best for you. Please note that the time slots are on a first come, first served basis, limited to 22 students, with no exceptions. Once we have all families scheduled, a confirmation notice will be shared through email.

Families will enter the Churchill Parking Lot on Secretariat and can drop students off at the Plank Main Entrance, Door 1. Students will get out of vehicles and form a line where they will be congratulated by Plank staff and receive their certificate(s). After your child exits the car to get in line, families will pull their cars up to a designated area between Plank and Churchill and have the opportunity to get out and take pictures. We will have signage to direct you where to go. Once the 15 minute time slot is up, we ask that families return to their vehicles so that the next group can get their photo opportunity. Please note that we need to be cognizant of our time frames to ensure we are able to offer the same time for all 8th grade students to come through during their assigned time.

We look forward to seeing you!

Mr. Haymond


Plank Junior High School

*NOTE: In the event of inclement weather, we will move inside. Students will enter Door 2 to receive certificates, and make their way to to the Gymnasium for pictures. Students will exit through Door 27 during the 15 minute time slot.

Virtual 6th Grade Step-Up

Our 6th grade team and our counselors are putting together a virtual step up presentation for our incoming 6th grade families and students. Follow this link to our Counselor's webpage, which has a wealth of information for incoming Pirates. Our purpose is to get our incoming Pirates excited for the transition into Plank, as well as have an opportunity to familiarize themselves with some of the faces and voices that they will see when they arrive in the Fall.

LRC Book Check out returns

Pirates, LRC items are due to the LRC on May 11th. The last check out is May 7th. Remote students can return items to the box labeled LRC in the foyer in front of the school. Thanks Pirates!

Returning School Materials

There are a number of textbooks and novels that have been provided to students to accommodate our at-home instruction. As we come to the end of the school year, we have a book and novel return station set up so that families are able to return these materials prior to the end of the school year. This is set up in the Plank Foyer, so parents and students can drop those materials off at their leisure.

Please put your child's name on a sticky note when returning materials on the inside cover of the textbook or novel.

Junior High Summer School Information

Information for Junior High Summer School went live on the district website this week.

SD308 Direct Page for Summer School

Direct Link to Registration

ABC's of Plank Spirit

Starting Wednesday, Plank teachers and students are invited to participate in the ABC's of Plank Spirit, continuing through the end of the school year. That's right! There are 26 school days left until the end of the year. Show your Pirate Pride, and share your pictures of your Pirate Pride for the yearbook!
Big picture

Oswego East Athletics Orientation Presentation

Follow this link to view the orientation presentation for Oswego East Athletics for the 2021-2022 school year.

Suicide Prevention Awareness

We want to raise awareness of the fact that suicides start to spike in the spring (April and May) and we want to keep our students healthy and safe. The pandemic has negatively impacted virtually ALL teens’ mental health--particularly teens who were already struggling with mental health issues and/or experienced additional stressors related to COVID-19. Please help us by increasing your vigilance at this time of year!

Here are some examples of youth that may be at a heightened risk for suicide:

  • A teen with a personal or family history of suicide or mental illness, especially during periods of stressful life events or the recurrence of a mental or substance use disorder
  • A teen who is especially isolated (e.g., students not able to return to in-person learning due to personal/family illness)
  • A teen who is using alcohol and/or drugs, particularly if in isolation and/or as a means of coping with difficult life events
  • A teen who is struggling in school (e.g., lack of interest or motivation; dramatic drop in grades; interpersonal difficulties)
  • A recent divorce, job loss or other family stressors
  • Intolerable loss of face or status (e.g., cyberbullying/bullying)
  • Identifying as LGBTQ+, particularly if not accepted by family and/or peers

Here are some recommendations on how to talk to your child:

  • Listen, listen, listen. Allow your child to vent about their frustrations, fears, and worries. Maintain good eye contact and convey you are genuinely interested in what they have to say. Give them the opportunity to “get it all out.”
  • Ask them to expand on their feelings.
  • Work with your child to brainstorm solutions.
  • Reframe what they are saying. Summarize and repeat back to them what you heard. For example, if your child is talking about having issues with friends, you can say, “You’ve been getting into quite a number of arguments with them over the past few weeks. It sounds like you’re feeling lonely and frustrated."
If you are ever concerned that someone is in immediate danger of harming themselves, call 911 immediately!! Another good resource is the Suicide Prevention Lifeline available 24/7 at 1-800-273-8255. You can also refer to Elyssa’s Mission’s website at www.elyssasmission.org for additional information on what to do and where to get help (Under Suicide Prevention: For Parents).

Thank you for your role in keeping our children safe and preventing suicides.

Helpful Online Safety Information for Parents

Technology has changed the way we live, work, play, learn, and interact. It is hard to keep up with all the new apps, online trends, etc. our students and children are using. Below are helpful resources for parents to learn helpful tips about online safety, how to talk to your children about online safety, and information on current apps our students and children are using.

Online Safety Information for Parents:

Stay Safe Online - National Cyber Security Alliance

Guide to Potentially Dangerous Apps for Kids

Social Media Red Flags Parents Should Know About

What Parents Should Know About Social Media and Anxiety

Social Media Guide - Cyber Security and Infrastructure Security Agency

Weekly Online Safety Spotlight - What Parents Need to Know About TikTok

See the infographic below about Tik-Tok.

Yearbook Pictures can still be submitted!

New this year! Plank's yearbook can upload photos directly from a cell phone!


❖ Anyone can download the free Balfour ImageShare app by going to the App Store and typing in ‘Balfour ImageShare’ app. You will just set it up with your name and password.
● Search for Balfour Image Share in your app marketplace
● Download the app
● Enter our project number 119194 and a create your own password.
(OPTION: point your web browser to images.balfour.com to upload photos from your computer)
Image Reminders:
● The yearbook staff will review all photos & determine final yearbook content.
● We cannot guarantee that all submissions can be used in the book.
● Images should be in JPEG or PNG format, RGB - maximum file size is 20MB per

Plank Home and School Member Search

Would you like to get involved with the Home and School? We have 2 open positions for the upcoming 2021-2022 school year. We have one meeting on the Second Tuesday of the month from 6-7. Please reach out to Jacquie Bucher, kplankhsa@gmail.com if you would like to learn more. Our current known openings are treasurer and recording secretary.

Plank Spiritwear

Pirate Families,

Now is the time to show off your Plank Pride for next year! We have your new grade level spirit wear available and ready to order. Please click here or see the flyer and order yours today. Parents, you have a great opportunity to show your Pirate Pride, too! The access code is plank21vq.

When you order please put the student's current grade level and lunch hour. If you have any questions please email Sean Daleiden - sdaleiden@sd308.org


Follow this link for the most updated information on Hybrid Learning at Plank!

Phase III Information

Phase III for Plank Junior High Begins April 7 and continues through the end of the school year

Hybrid In-person & Remote by Choice
(Video) (Slides)
(Phase 3 Summary Handout)

Parent Message for Phase 3: 3.4.21

Plank Junior High


  • Groups A and B will combine and attend on Mon/Tue/Thu/Fri (4 days per week)
  • Self Contained Special Education students in ISP and LSP programs will be in person all 5 days
  • Arrival and Dismissal times will not change
  • First Hour starts at 8:05 AM
  • Student dismissal is 1:05 PM
  • Wednesday will remain remote learning day for all other students (Go Live! Sessions)
  • Student Support Time will still occur on Mon/Tue/Thu/Fri from 2:15 to 3:00

Distancing at Plank

  • Current classrooms at Plank can hold 15 students and a teacher with 6 foot distancing
  • Class sizes in Phase III may exceed 15-20 students in many classes
  • PLEASE NOTE: Six foot social distancing will not always be possible because of the combination of student cohort groups
  • Lunch will remain a lunch study hall
  • In order to adhere to group size recommendations, students may have their lunch locations change at the start of Phase III

Remote by Choice: There will be no changes from the current schedule

5 things for a successful end to the school year

Here are some things to be best prepared to end the school year.

1. Students need to log into Tyler SIS Portal to review grades and missing assignments regularly. Part of self-management is checking TylerSIS for grades and missing assignments. This may be new for some students, but it is a good habit to form now to prepare for the future.

2. Set alarms to help maintain prompt attendance to remote classes. If you have Amazon or Google Devices (Echo, Alexa, or Google devices can have verbal prompts to set alarms at certain times.)

3. Students need to utilize the provided support time with teachers. If they are having trouble with work, not understanding, or falling behind, Student Support Time is available with ALL teachers from 2:15 to 3:00 during Hybrid Phase III.

4. Students need to check email regularly. Email is the way teachers can reach out to students and notify about missing assignments or share information about classes. Students who are regularly checking their emails will have the most up-to-date information from their classes so that they don't fall behind.

5. Contact teachers if there are questions about grades. Teachers have been making contacts home through phone calls and emails about grades. If you have specific questions about your child's grades, the teacher is the person who can answer that question. Email teachers your questions, or call their extensions listed on the school webpage.

Student Support Time

During our Hybrid Schedule, Student Support Time will be from 2:15 to 3:00 every Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday. Please encourage your child(ren) to reach out to staff and request help if/when needed.

Plank Staff Shout Out

We want to recognize and celebrate the work our staff is doing during the Pandemic. Please consider completing this form to let a staff member know what they are doing that is helping you or your child and that you appreciate their hard work and efforts!

Staff Shout Out Form

Students and families can complete this form.

Parent Resources

Follow the links to access the parent resources that we have available.

Kendall County Community Food Pantry

Greetings SD 308 Families,

The Oswego Location of the Kendall County Community Food Pantry is the first Friday of every month from 6 - 7:30 pm at East View Academy, 4175 Route 71, Oswego. Bring your ID with your address. Please come out to receive a variety of food items, including fresh produce, bread, meat, boxed and canned goods. Food will be delivered directly to your car. We look forward to seeing you!

For more information please call 630.636.3667 or click HERE.

Supporting Students and Families

The Student Services team at Plank has compiled a list of valuable resources for families to use. These resources are available to all of our families. There are two forms that can be completed to provide assistance if needed during the summer. We miss you, Pirates!.

This form is a short survey for families. Fill out the family form here.

To visit our Student Services resources Page, please click here.

Set up a time to meet with the Plank Counselors!

Our Plank counseling team is using a new scheduling tool this year. It allows students and parents to directly book a meeting with us. Follow the links below to access the editable schedule to meet with one of our counselors. They also created and released the Counselors Corner Newsletter. If you have questions, reach out to our counseling team below!

Mrs. Gannon (students with last names A-L) cgannon-sd308.youcanbook.me/

Mrs. Hlavacs (students with last names M-Z) khlavacs-sd308.youcanbook.me/

Mrs. Modaff (students with last names M-Z) jmodaff-sd308.youcanbook.me/


Attendance Guidelines

Plank Attendance Guidelines


During Remote Learning, students must be called into the Attendance Line if they are not participating for all or part of the Remote Learning school day (Monday-Friday).

Please leave a message on the Attendance Line noting the reason for the absence. Include all symptoms or the reason for the absence if it is not illness related. Students need to be called in if they will miss a partial day. Please note the class/classes that will be missed in addition to the reason for the absences.

Teachers are keeping attendance through their hangout meet times, as well as their Wednesday attendance forms. If you have questions, please reach out to the individual teachers about these procedures. If your child was experiencing technical issues with devices, please reach out to the main office to talk with our attendance secretary.

Study Hall and Study Dynamics are classes that do not meet, and there is no need for attendance to be taken. If students have questions during this time, they can reach out to that Study Hall teacher to have questions answered through email.

There is the 2:15 to 3:00 Student Support time at the end of the day. Teachers may be reaching out to students and families to encourage additional support as we get into the school year. This is a time when students will be able to access their classroom teachers for help.

Important People to Know



Tyler Haymond 630-551-9410 thaymond@sd308.org

Assistant Principal

Dr. Marcus Lewis 630-551-9411 mlewis@sd308.org

Assistant Principal

Bailey Campbell 630-551-9412 bcampbell@sd308.org

Student Support Lead Teachers

Lead Special Education Teacher

Carrie Quinn 630-551-9497 cquinn@sd308.org

EL Coordinator

Guadalupe Gallardo Escobedo 630-551-9466 ggallardoescobedo@sd308.org


Principal Secretary

Laurie Williams 630-551-9409 lwilliams@sd308.org

Registrar/Discipline Secretary

Camille Simmons 630-551-9418 csimmons@sd308.org

Attendance Secretary

Asusana (Susie) Montes-Mijarez 630-551-9408 amontesmijarez@sd308.org

Student Services:


Caitlin Gannon 630-551-9414 cgannon@sd308.org

Students with last names A-L

Kelly Hlavacs and Jen Modaff 630-551-9415 khlavacs@sd308.org, jmodaff@sd308.org

Students with last names L-Z

Dr. Tawanda Kitchen 630-551-9483 tkitchen@sd308.org

Restorative Practice Counselor

Social Workers:

Regena Alonzo 630-551-9405 ralonzo@sd308.org

Marguerite Slinger 630-551-9416 mslinger@sd308.org

Building Nurse:

Kristin Jenkins 630-551-9402 kjenkins@sd308.org

Important Resources

Transportation: 630-636-2999

Tyler Parent Portal login/access questions: tylerhelp@sd308.org

Waiver of Fee questions: Kaitlyn Dolenak 630-636-3662

Free/Reduced Lunch Application Status: Paola Lares Luna: 630-636-3663