Cowlishaw News


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It was a great week of learning at Cowlishaw this week! As the weather changes, please remember to send your children to school in layers. The fall is filled with cool mornings and warm afternoons. We are very close to filling up our thumbs up award bucked and a Big Event will be coming soon!

Safety Drills

Thank you for choosing Cowlishaw Elementary School to provide educational services to your child. We are proud to be able to serve you and your children and we will continually strive to provide a safe and positive learning environment for them as we prepare them to be lifelong learners.

The safety of your child and all children in our schools as well as the safety of the school staff and support personnel is very important to us. In order to maintain a safe environment for our children to study and learn, it is necessary that we practice our emergency and crisis response plans by having drills designed to exercise our procedures.

We will be conducting various emergency procedure drills over the next few months. This letter is to help you understand the importance of this as well as to understand each type of drill.

The students and staff at Cowlishaw will be practicing 4 primary emergency drills each year. They are “LAW ENFORCEMENT DRILLS”, “SHELTER-IN-PLACE”, “FIRE DRILLS”, and “BUS EVACUATION DRILLS.” Tentative dates and a summary of each drill is listed below.

LAW ENFORCEMENT DRILL: (Lockdown) Thursday, November 11, 2021 at 2:00pm

The school will conduct one “Lockdown Drill” periodically throughout each school year in conjunction with the Naperville city police department. This type of drill will secure the school building and safely shelter all students, staff and visitors inside the building. The purpose of this drill is to keep the students safe from any danger outside or inside the building. During a “lockdown drill” all of the perimeter doors to the school building will be locked and will remain locked until the danger or issue outside or inside the building is removed. To enable everyone to remain safe, no one will be allowed to enter the building or leave the building until the drill is completed.

SHELTER-IN-PLACE DRILL: Tuesday October 19, 2021 (various times)

The “Shelter-in-Place” drill will be conducted each school year. The purpose of this drill is to be prepared to move to a safe location within the building in case of severe weather or tornados.

FIRE DRILL: Wednesday September 29, 2021 (various times)

The school will conduct a fire drill three times per year. The first drill will be on September 29, 2021. This is an instructional to inform the student of what they need to do when the fire alarm goes off and what exit to evacuate. The second drill TBD is a walk through and the third drill TBD is an actual drill with the participation of the Naperville city fire department. This is a Fire code requirement as well as a requirement for all Illinois public schools. We want each student to understand and be aware of the importance of this drill and not be afraid when the fire alarm is sounded. By practicing they will know what to do and how to do it.

BUS EVACUATION DRILL: Monday October 4, 2021 at 9:30am

During a Bus Evacuation Drill, students will be safely escorted along a designated evacuation route to one of our predetermined evacuation sites. At the conclusion of the drill, all students will be escorted back to the school.

For the safety of everyone involved and to maintain order, we respectfully ask that you would abide by the following during these drills:

• Do not come to the school campus

• Do not call the school offices (as they will be busy with the drill or actual emergency)

• Do not contact students or staff members via cell phone or social media (as they will be busy with the drill or actual emergency)

• In the event of an actual emergency, avoid social media posts. Correct information will be disseminated through our automated system as soon as possible.

• Please make sure that your contact information is current at all times so that you can be reached without delay in the event of an emergency. You will receive notification where to pick up your child as soon as practicable.

Please remember that these safety practice drills are done to help maintain our schools as a safe place to learn and work.

If you have any questions regarding safety concerns, or do not want your child to participate in any of these drills please contact the Title 1 School Wide Facilitator, Cole Jordan at (630) 428- 6160.

Hispanic Heritage Month

This month (September 15th - October 15th) we celebrate National Hispanic Heritage Month.

To celebrate this month, teachers will incorporate stories of Hispanic American excellence in their classrooms. To learn more about National Hispanic Heritage month, below are several websites for you and your family to check out. #HispanicHeritageMonth - español - English

Literacy Assessment

Our goal at Cowlishaw Elementary is to help ALL children grow as readers. To track students’ progress and guide our teaching, we will be using Scholastic’s Next Step Guided Reading Assessment.

The first three parts of the assessment take a short amount of class time to complete and they provide helpful information to guide our teaching. Students take a Reading Interest Survey, a Developmental Word Knowledge Inventory, and a Comprehension Assessment. The information we collect from these whole-class assessments will help us understand children’s reading interests and preferences, their ability to apply letter/sound knowledge to spell words, and their ability to listen to (grades K-2) or read (grades 3-6) and understand a story or informational text.

Then, during a Reading Assessment Conference, we will listen to each child read a text and notice the following:

· Whether the student is reading fluently with appropriate expression.

· What strategies the reader uses when he or she encounters an unknown word.

· How the reader is able to retell the story or recount the information he or she reads independently, via targeted comprehension questions.

The information gathered during the reading assessment conference will help us find appropriate texts to use for reading instruction. We look forward to partnering with you to support your child’s reading development. If you have any questions regarding this assessment, please contact Danielle Culberson

Nuestro objetivo en la escuela Cowlishaw es ayudar a TODOS los niños a desarrollase como lectores. Para monitorizar el progreso de los estudiantes y guiar la instrucción, utilizaremos la guía de Scholastic, El próximo paso: evaluación guiada de la lectura (Next Step Guided Reading Assessment).

Los primeros tres pasos de esta evaluación requieren un tiempo corto de clase y proporcionan información útil para la instrucción. Los estudiantes toman tres tests: Encuesta sobre el interés por la lectura, Test sobre el conocimiento de palabras y Evaluación de la comprensión. La información que arrojan estas evaluaciones de toda la clase, nos ayudarán a conocer los intereses y preferencias de lectura de los niños, su habilidad para aplicar el conocimiento de las letras y sus sonidos para deletrear palabras, y su habilidad para escuchar (en los grados K a 2) o para leer (en los grados 3 a 6) y comprehender una historia o un texto informativo.

Luego, durante la Evaluación de la lectura, escucharemos leer a cada niño independientemente y observaremos lo siguiente:

· Si el estudiante lee de manera fluída y con la expresión adecuada.

· Qué estrategias utiliza cuando se encuentra con una palabra desconocida.

· La capacidad de volver a narrar la historia o hacer un recuento de lo leído independientemente al contestar preguntas específicas de comprensión.

La información recopilada durante esta evaluación, nos ayudará a seleccionar los textos apropiados para la instrucción de la lectura. Esperamos trabajar en conjunto con usted para apoyar el desarrollo de su hijo como lector. Si tiene alguna pregunta sobre estas evaluaciones, por favor póngase en contacto con nosotros en Danielle Culberson

Danielle Culberson

Intervention Teacher

Cowlishaw Elementary


GEG Film Festival

We are excited to announce that the GEG Film Festival is returning of the 2021 – 2022 school year. In the past, we had some AWESOME participation and success from 204 students. We are excited that we can bring the film festival back this year and see what your students are able to create!

The theme for this year's festival is "IMAGINE...".

We have created a 204 ONLY Flipgrid for students to share ideas around the theme IMAGINE. Some examples of prompts include “Imagine a World Without, Imagine a World With… Reimagine a Story or Product and MORE…”. The purpose is to use this as a brainstorming opportunity before students create their videos. All are welcome! – Students and Teachers can share even if they are not participating in the film festival.

Important Dates and Information:

  • September 15th - Launch of Film Festival

  • December 10th - Due Date for All Films

  • Early January - Announcement of Winners

  • Film Festival - IDEAcon Conference in February (date TBD) at Renaissance Convention Center in Schaumburg

Updated Film Fest Website - Find Guidelines, Directions and All Information

Looking Ahead

10/11/2021-No School-Indigenous Peoples Day/Columbus Day

10/22/2021-End of Quarter 1

11/18 &11/22 -Parent Teacher Conferences

CogAT Census Testing for 2nd and 5th Grade Students

On September 29th, 30th and October 1st, second and fifth grade students will complete the Cognitive Abilities Test (CogAT). The CogAT appraises the cognitive development of students by measuring students’ learned reasoning abilities. Although grounded in biological processes, these abilities are developed through in-school and out-of-school experiences. The questions on the CogAT require students to demonstrate their reasoning abilities in each of three symbol systems most closely related to success in school: verbal reasoning, quantitative reasoning and nonverbal reasoning. The Verbal Battery assesses students’ abilities to use search, retrieval and comparison processes that are essential for verbal reasoning; the Quantitative Battery assesses students’ abilities to reason about patterns and relations using concepts that are essential in quantitative thinking; the Nonverbal Battery assesses students’ abilities to reason with novel questions that use spatial and figural content.

The results of this assessment are used to identify individual learning strengths and weaknesses and determine student program placement. This assessment will be conducted in the regular classroom setting. At the second grade level, testing will take approximately forty-five minutes during three days. At the fifth grade level, testing will take approximately thirty minutes during three days. We anticipate receiving the results of this assessment by January 2022.

Listen and Learn

Superintendent Dr. Adrian Talley will hold three Listen & Learn sessions with the community starting Monday, October 4 at Fischer Middle School from 7 – 9 pm. In the sessions, Dr. Talley will share information about the district as well as his goals. Community members will have an opportunity to share their feedback on what works in the district, what is not working, and what specific suggestions they have for what is not working. Information gathered during these sessions will help the superintendent in planning for the future and may be used as part of the strategic planning process that will start later in the school year. RSVP here for the October 4 Listen & Learn Session.

Additional Listen & Learn sessions will be held on Thursday, November 4 at Granger Middle School and Tuesday, December 14 at Crone Middle School.

Cowlishaw Birthday Book Club Is Back!!!


Cowlishaw’s LMC has the answer! Donating a book to Cowlishaw’s LMC helps to build our library collection and make your child feel special at the same time.

At some time during the month of your child’s birthday, we will invite your child to come down to the LMC and choose a book from the birthday cart. If your child’s birthday is in June, July or August, we will invite him or her to come down to the LMC during the month of his or her half birthday. There will be a flat $10.00 price for each book.

When your child chooses a book, we take his/her picture to put in the front of the book with a bookplate commemorating the donation. Your child’s name will go up on the Birthday Book Club bulletin board in the LMC, and your child will be the first to check out the book he/she chose! What an opportunity!

The registration for Cowlishaw’s Birthday Book club can be found in the PushCoin Webstore.

Please see the document below if you need help with accessing the Webstore:

How to access the IPSD Webstore

Thank you for considering this program!

It’s a great way for your child to feel special and to support the Cowlishaw LMC at the same time.

Boundary Committee

The community is invited to observe all boundary committee meetings. There will also be an opportunity for community members to view concepts and provide feedback before the final proposals are created and presented to the board of education. The community’s feedback will be incorporated into the final proposals that will be presented to the board of education for approval.

Community forums will be held at our three high schools on the following dates.

Monday, November 8 at 7 pm - Waubonsie Valley High School
Tuesday, November 9 at 7 pm - Neuqua Valley High School
Wednesday, November 10 at 7 pm - Metea Valley High School

For more information on the boundary process, to view meeting materials, or watch meeting videos, visit 2021 Boundary Committee.

IPSD 204 District COVID Dashboard

Positive cases of COVID-19 each school in Indian Prairie 204 can be found on the District's COVID Dashboard. The dashboard includes all positive cases of COVID-19 reported to District 204 for individuals who were on campus. The information is updated each Monday by 4 pm. If your child is in close contact with someone who tested positive, a member of the COVID-19 Response Team will notify you directly regarding the need to quarantine as a precaution. Additional information found on this page includes the current transmission level and a link to the corresponding mitigation strategies.

PTA Updates

PTA Updates Happy Friday Koala Families, We would like to thank the Koala Families for participating in Donuts for Dads. We had such a great turn out and a special thanks to our volunteers who made this event possible. Save the date for our upcoming events: ● Winter Coat & Boot Drive until Friday, October 1st. ● Movie Night: Friday October 1st. Look for a flyer in backpack mail next week for more details! ● PTA’s General Zoom meeting on Wednesday, October 20th at 6:30 pm. ● Halloween Party on Friday, October 29th, Time TBA. Volunteers Needed! Have a nice weekend and thanks again for your ongoing support! STAY CONNECTED Find us on Facebook! Follow us on Twitter! @cowlishawkoalas Email us at:

Lunch and Breakfast Service

This year, we will continue to provide a grab and go style lunch at no charge to all Cowlishaw students. Please visit the IPSD website for more information on the free meal program and for menu options.

Health and Safety Measures

Please use the link below to view the Covid Mitigation strategies and quarantine guidance per district guidelines.

Elementary School Hours

Regular Hours:

Arrival: Doors open at 8:50. Bell rings at 9:05. Students should be in class and ready to learn at 9:05.

Dismissal: 3:35 Every Day


Arrival on Wednesdays ONLY-Doors open at 9:00 and bell rings at 9:15.

Dismissal: 3:35