Weekly Communique

December 4, 2020

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Thought from Dr. Pacatte

D56 Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Committee


At the start of the new calendar year (January) our school district will begin to formalize the work surrounding Diversity, Equity and Inclusion. A focus on this area began three years ago and it is now time to create opportunities to dig deeper into specific components of our work in these areas. A Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) Committee is being developed to support this work by identifying needs, goals and opportunities for growth and development.


An overview of the proposed DEI Committeeā€™s work is found below.


Tier I: Identify needs, goals, and opportunities for growth and development

Education & Research

Assessing Current Climate and Culture of the District


Tier 2: Develop sub-committees to narrow the focus of committed participants

Community, Students, and Staff

Curriculum & Instruction

Policy Guidance and Operations


Tier 3: Create timelines and action plans for this work


Tier 4: Review, Report, and Respond


The DEI committee and sub-committees will be made up of staff, parents, administration, and students. If this is something that you feel passionate about and are interested in participating, please send an email to Mrs. Lori Rupsch, the Administrative Assistant to the Superintendent, at lrupsch@d56.org re: DEI Committee. You will be sent a link to an application to complete. It is important that the members of the committee are interested in all aspects of the work, available for the meetings of both the full committee and any sub-committee, and fulfill a need for complete representation of our entire school community.


What does this mean? Our committee members should represent our four schools, district demographics, and provide a variety of voices with different perspectives. At this time, this is not a committee for a singular area of concern, though as the work moves forward there may be a place for that. This is for people passionate about our whole district, all of our students, and the myriad of challenges that exist related to diversity, equity, and inclusion.

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Tweet of the Week

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#d56achieves

Virtual Disney Field Trip

Last month, Mrs. Park's classroom took their first virtual trip to Disney World. They rode the plane, took a stroll around Magic Kingdom, rode a roller coaster, watched some shows, and ended their trip with some fabulous fireworks. They still experienced the magic of Disney right from the comfort of their homes.

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e-Learning at Gurnee School District 56

E-Learning is working in District 56 because of the team approach used to assist students. Students, parents, and teachers (including classroom teachers, special education teachers, and aides) are working together to make it happen. Teachers share their expertise regarding the best curriculum and strategies for each student. The student pictured to the right (Noah S.) is one who has not missed a day of school, is always engaged in his work, and always brings his "A-game!" His parents work with teachers to make sure work gets completed. The learning is continuous and reinforced by both teachers and parents.

Spaulding School Turkey Trot

Just before the Thanksgiving holiday, Spaulding School students and families enjoyed participating in the first-ever Virtual Turkey Trot. Under normal circumstances, students and families would get together on the Spaulding field and walk and run laps for points. The class that completes the most laps wins the Turkey Trot Trophy. This year, the event was held virtually, but classes still gathered together at regular physical education class times to participate. The event featured 30 seconds of running followed by 30 seconds of rest (and, in some classes, fun bantering!). Students and families each received one tally mark for every 30 seconds of running. The participation rate was wonderful. At the end of the day, Spaulding School totaled 13,778 tallies, which is the equivalent of 6,879 minutes of running! Pictured below are a few families who had several members of their families participate: The Rosas family had two children, two parents, and a grandparent participate; the Kroll family also had three generations of runners participate, as well as all of the farmhands on the Kroll family farm and in-home daycare, whose students participated in the Virtual Turkey Trot also.

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Warren-Newport Public Library

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Warren-Newport Public Library

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Adler Center December News

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Lake County Health Department

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The Catholic Charities

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Illinois Department of Public Health