Important Aqsa School Updates

Shelter in place, School Survey, Spring Break & E-learning

Contents of this week's Special Newsletter

This newsletter is FULL of important information. Please read it in its entirety.

Here is a listing of every section:

  1. E-Learning and Shelter in home procedures as they relate to learning
  2. SPRING BREAK info
  3. Duaa for Safety and Protection
  4. Isra and Miraj
  5. SURVEYS- please complete
  6. Google Suite
  7. Quarter 3 grades/Report cards/Parent Teacher Conferences
  8. Social Emotional Needs/Social worker contact
  9. Staying Healthy and IDPH guidelines/ Proper Hand washing Techniques
  10. Resources for Online learning
  11. Photo Gallery of Aqsa School halls and walls
  12. Places offering free food
  13. Contact us

E-Learning and other changes during shelter-in-home times

Assalamu Alaikum,

Inshallah, this newsletter reaches you while you are in the best of health and highest iman.

SubhanAllah, we are facing unprecedented times as we work to curb the spread of the COVID-19 virus. We made the decision to move to E-learning , or remote electronic learning, on Friday March 13th, and soon thereafter, an order from the governor followed asking for at home learning until the 31st of March. Students were sent home on Friday, March 13th, with all necessary school materials and in grades 3-12, a school issued chrome book.

On Monday, March 16th, our staff engaged in a full day professional learning workshop, in order to learn how to best serve our students with E-Learning. Official E-learning began on Tuesday, March 17th.

PHENOMENAL EFFORT: Alhamdullah, our first week of E-learning was largely a success! We thank all of our students and parents, this was a team effort and your cooperation and support are so very appreciated. A very special and well-deserved thank you to our teachers for their hard work, commitment and dedication to the continuity of learning of our students.

SHELTER-IN-HOME: Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker issued a stay-at-home order taking effect 5 p.m., Saturday, March 21, through April 7 for all of Illinois. He said schools are to remain closed until April 7 as well. During this time students at Aqsa School will continue to engage in E-learning. Inshallah, by April 7th, we will evaluate the situation and make a determination as to when we will return to school, Inshallah.

RELIANCE ON ALLAH IN THIS DIFFICULT TIME: As a reminder, we should have Hope in Allah (SWT). It is He who is in control of our affairs. With His Mercy we will persevere through this trying time. We must remind ourselves to ask Him for protection from everything.

Any moment you get, keep your tongue wet with the remembrance of Allah. Please keep these two tips at a top priority: saying Istighfar and the Salawat on our Beloved Prophet (peace and blessings on him.) There are many Salawat to choose from and you don't have to choose a very long one. One you may already know is the Salat Al-Ibrahimi which we recite in prayer. "Allahum sali ala Mohammad wa ala aali Mohammad kama salayta ala Ibrahim...." Outside of prayer, it can be shortened to "Allahuma Sali ala Sayidna Mohammad wa ala alihi wa sahbihi wa salim".

May Allah protect us all from disease and illness and help those who are suffering from any health issues. May we gather again at the school and enjoy our peers, friends and teachers. May we all gain knowledge through our new norm of e-learning. Let's be patient with each other and grateful for our many many blessings. Ameen.

With great love and appreciation for everyone's wonderful efforts,

Ms. Tammie Ismail


Aqsa School

SPRING BREAK March 23-27th - NO E-Learning

We will observe our Spring Break next week March 23rd to the 27th. During this time NO E-learning will take place. We realize that students will not be able to leave their homes due to the Shelter-in-Place order currently in place in Illinois. To address this, we have included some engaging activities in the AT HOME RESOURCES section at the end of this newsletter.
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Isra and Miraj

Yesterday was the 27th day of the seventh month of the Islamic calendar, the month of Rajab. It was the night of The ISRA and MIRAJ. This miraculous event took place over 1441 years ago, when the blessed Prophet Muhammad, traveled from Makkah to Jerusalem and then ascended to the heavens, all within a portion of the night. This miraculous journey holds so many gems of wisdom and spiritual upliftment. Take time to discuss the details of Isra and Miraj as as a family.

But the piece of wisdom I would like to relate to, is that of relief after hardship. We know that the Isra and Miraj was a gift given the Prophet Muhammad after a time of great trial and difficulty. This beautiful miracle came after the Yam Al Houzen, or Year of Sadness. During that year the Prophet Muhammad ( Peace Be Upon Him) suffered through a boycott, the death of his loving wife and companion Khadijah, the death of his steadfast protector and uncle Abu Talib and the rejection of the town of Taif. It was a long and hard time. But the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) never lost hope in Allah's Plan or Mercy.

We find ourselves in a time of great uncertainty and difficulty. As the world works to contain the Corona Virus, we should learn from the lesson of the Isra and Miraj. The lesson that Allah will never abandon His servants and believers. That He is always there for us and that we can call upon Him for protection and Mercy. And finally to remember that "Verily with every hardship comes ease".

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SURVEYS-E-Learning: Please share your feedback

Your input helps us determine how best to move forward with our E-Learning program. Please everyone take a few minutes to complete the surveys sent out. The links are available below.

Grades prek -2nd ( parents please complete)

Grades 3-5 ( parents please complete)

Grades 6-12 ( students please complete)

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Aqsa School emails and chromebooks all Chrome and Google Suite Based

As we delve into E- Learning it is important that everyone is aware of the online Software as a Service (SaaS) product that Aqsa School is contracted with, which is Google Suite, or G-Suite for short. G-Suite groups all the cloud-based productivity and collaboration tools developed by Google for businesses, institutes, and nonprofits. Included with our subscription students get access to custom Gmail addresses with the domain name, Docs, Sheets, Slides, Calendar, Drive, Sites, and so much more.

  • GOOGLE CLASSROOM: Throughout the E-Learning experience, Aqsa students will be utilizing Google Classroom as the "homeroom" which they will go to daily to see assignments, teacher comments and directions.
  • GOOGLE MEET: They will also go onto Google Meet, to video live with their teacher and class for live instruction daily.
  • GOOGLE CHAT: Will be used for office hours meetings
  • GOOGLE DOCS: Will be used to type and share documents with teachers.
  • GOOGLE SLIDES: For creating presentation slides
  • GOOGLE DRIVE: To save their work in electronic folders

For more information for parents, please click on the presentation below

Parents’ guide to Google Classroom

Quarter 3, Report Cards and Parent Teacher Conferences

We will be moving forward with grades for 3rd quarter. However, given the Stay- in -Shelter proclamation, we will not be able to hold in-person Parent Teacher Conferences , nor distribute physical copies of report cards at that time. Please read the guidelines below for more information about accessing grades.
  • The quarter grades and marking period are on schedule.
  • No grades will be negatively impacted by our school closings.
  • Final grades for third quarter will be available on 4/3/20 through Plus Portals/Rediker for grades 3-12.
  • Elementary Report cards for grades Prek to 2nd grade will be mailed.
  • If there is a need for a conference, you will be notified and a virtual meeting will be set up.

Any further questions, please email

Social Emotional Needs - Social Worker, Dr. Layla Khayr, is available to meet

These are difficult and uncertain times. This can instill fear and anxiety in us all. This can be particularly pronounced in children. If you would like your child to speak with our social worker, Ms. Layla Khayr, she is willing to arrange phone and virtual sessions for students or parents. Simply email Ms. Khayr at to set up a meeting.

Proper Hand Washing is Crucial to Keeping Us Healthy

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Staying Healthy During this Pandemic

As cases are reported throughout the country, it’s important to follow the advice being shared by the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH). IDPH has a list of Frequently Asked Questions on COVID-19:

For the complete list visit

Q: How can I help protect myself?

A: Follow these tips to help prevent COVID-19:

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after blowing your nose, coughing or sneezing; going to the bathroom; and before eating or preparing food. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick with respiratory symptoms.
  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.
  • If you have not already done so, discuss influenza vaccination with your health care provider to help protect you against seasonal influenza.

Q: Should I clean “high touch” surfaces?

A: Yes. Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces, such as tables, doorknobs, light switches, countertops, handles, desks, phones, keyboards, toilets, faucets and sinks. If surfaces are dirty, clean them using detergent or soap and water prior to disinfection. To disinfect, most common EPA-registered household disinfectants will work

Additionally, the IDPH recommends that individuals who are experiencing symptoms call their medical providers to report their illness prior to seeking care at a clinic, physician’s office, or hospital.

Don't Miss Any spots when Hand Washing

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Aqsa School's website

Information for Aqsa School can be found here.


HOW TO TALK TO YOUR CHILDREN about Shelter-in-Place and the CoronaVirus

PBS offers tips and resources to talk to younger children about this very unprecedented reality in an age appropriate way.

South Cook Intermediate Service Center School Closure Resources for Families and AT HOME LEARNING RESOURCES

Wonderful resources for all ages in all subjects: math, science, reading, art, health and fitness. Please explore these links, they are so beneficial and fun! Enjoy fun learning over Spring Break and beyond!

AQSA SCHOOL COMES TO YOU! Scenes from our halls and walls

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IN NEED OF FOOD? Those helping during this time

The public school districts are distributing free breakfasts and lunches to anyone in need.
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Communication is Key

Please feel free to reach out with any questions at anytime.

If you have any ideas or suggestions to submit for the newsletter shoot an email to We'd love to hear your feedback.