Pirate's Cove

News for the weeks of 2/19 - 3/1

Superintendent's Message

February 18, 2019

Dear District Families and Staff,

It is with a heavy heart that we join our community to grieve for those individuals who tragically lost their lives in Aurora on Friday. We send our thoughts and support to the first responders, the Henry Pratt employees, and their families. As a district, many students, families, and staff members in our community have been directly impacted.

We are offering support at all of our schools when we resume classes on Tuesday. Additional counselors will be available providing time, space, and resources to students and staff during this difficult time. Individual building leaders may also be reaching out to their impacted school community to offer age-appropriate resources for parents and staff.

Although we are a large district, we are a connected and compassionate community, and together we will support each other. Attached you will find a handout with suggestions to help students during tragedies of this kind. Communication is important as children process and grieve. Many initiatives are also underway to provide financial assistance for the families of the victims. A list of established fundraisers is being maintained by Beacon News.

United as a community, we will begin healing, and together we will move forward.


Dr. John W. Sparlin
Superintendent of Schools
Oswego Community Unit School District 308

Principal's Message

Pirate Parents,

On Monday, March 11, 2019 SD308 Board Member, Lauri Doyle will be at the Plank HSA meeting focused on the upcoming referendum. She will be there to share information about the referendum and answer questions.

The meeting will take place in the Plank Community Room (A103). Enter Door 3 near the Cafeteria. The meeting will begin at 6pm.

This link will give you some basic Facts About the Referendum.

Also, Plank's HSA will be inviting people running for the school board to our next meeting for a meet and greet opportunity.

Tyler Haymond

Plank Junior High School

Plank Pirate Night

Plank's next Pirate Night is scheduled for March 1st from 6-8PM. This Pirate Night is spring themed. volunteer sign up is available by following this link.

Home and school is looking for parents to plan the 8th grade bash on May 17th, from 3:30-5:30. Contact Nancy Vesta at nvesta@comcast.net.

Shoe Drive

We have over 700 pairs of shoes donated so far for our shoe drive! Thank you to families who have already joined our efforts to raise money for our Care Closet. The more pounds of shoes we collect, the more money Funds2orgs will provide us in exchange for the shoes. There are just a few weeks left to bring in donations. The last day to donate is March 15th. If there are any questions, please reach out to Christine McCree (cmccree@sd308.org) or Caitlin Gannon (cgannon@sd308.org).

Toiletry Drive

Plank Junior High will be sponsoring a toiletry drive after spring break. When traveling, if you have unused toiletry items, please bring in to donate to a good cause. We are collecting these toiletries to donate to Hesed House in Aurora. Questions? Contact our student services team in the office at 630-551-9400.

Plank Chocolate Fundraiser

Our Plank Chocolate Fundraiser raised $1,441 dollars to use towards increasing school technologies. In addition, as part of the fundraiser, Great American Opportunities issued $28,500 in college scholarships for eligible 6th, 7th, and 8th graders! Great work, Pirates!

STEAM Night at Plank

Are you interested in Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Mathematics? STEAM Night 2019 is scheduled for Wednesday, March 13, from 6 - 8 p.m. Come in and check out some great STEAM demonstrations by Plank staff! Contact our science department for more information on STEAM Night 2019.

Junior High Math Competition @ OHS

When: Thursday March 7, 2019

Where: Oswego High School

Time: 6:00 (plan to arrive at least 15 minutes early)

Who: Open to all 6th, 7th, and 8th grade students

Cost: None

Contact Pamela Campbell at pcampbell@sd308.org for more information.

Junior Achievement Volunteers

6th grade geography classes are in need of Guest Teachers for JA: Junior Achievement, the week of February 25th through March 1st. We still need volunteers for Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday to cover either a full day or and AM or PM shift.

Please contact mmoy@jachicago.org, Melody Moy if you are interested in volunteering to teach lessons on Budgeting and Finances.

NJHS St. Baldrick's Donation

Our Plank National Junior Honors Society raised $70 with our Valentine's sales for St. Baldrick's. well done, NJHS!

St. Baldricks Event - Make Cancer Walk the Plank

As part of our SIP day on March 8th, we will be holding a St. Baldrick's event from 10:30 - 11:30. We are accepting donations for the event to support local childhood cancer charities. We have already raised over $1,000 in donations! Thank you for all who have participated in donations and to those courageous shavees who will "Brave the Shave." Follow the link below for more information and a link to donate. Contact Josh Edwards at jedwards01@sd308.org for more information on our St. Baldrick's event!


Junior High District Poetry Contest

Do you have a student who is interested in Poetry? Help them celebrate National Poetry Month by entering the Junior High District Poetry Contest. All open Category Submissions are due April 5th to ELA Teachers. Final Awards Announced End of April.

Upcoming Plank HSA Spirit Night Fundraisers

Culver's Spirit Day Fundraiser

Monday, Feb. 18th, 11am-10pm

2781 U.S. 34

Oswego, IL

Please support the Plank Fundraiser at Culver's on Monday 2/18. 10% of all Plank orders will be donated back to Plank Home and School.

Bring a copy of this flyer, a picture of it on your phone or simply mention you are there for Plank!

Click here for the Flyer

Giordano's Spirit Day Fundraiser

Thursday, Feb. 28th, 9am-11pm

2870 W U.S. 34

Oswego, IL

Please support the Plank Fundraiser at Giordano's on Monday 2/18. 15% of all Plank orders will be donated back to Plank Home and School. Also, Plank customers will receive $5 off of a $25 purchase with the flyer as well!

Bring a copy of this flyer, a picture of it on your phone or simply mention you are there for Plank!

Click here for the Flyer

Illinois 5 Essentials Survey - Extended to March 15


Parents, students, and teachers across Illinois are being asked to participate in the seventh annual 5Essentials Survey. The survey will take about 40 minutes to complete. It will help create a detailed picture of our school and gathers data on the following five indicators of our success or opportunities for improvement:

  • Effective Leaders

  • Collaborative Teachers

  • Involved Families

  • Supportive Environments

  • Ambitious Instruction

IMPORTANT: If our school has a teacher/student response rate of at least 50 percent, we will receive our 5Essentials Report in April. If our parent response rate is at least 20 percent, these results will also be included!

Currently, Plank has a 23% parent response rate. Your feedback is important and is used to make adjustments to our school functioning. Please take a few moments to complete the survey.

Please know, your identity and survey responses will be kept completely confidential. Also, families with siblings in other buildings, the 5Essentials Survey would need to be taken for both respective buildings. For example, if you have a Plank student and a Long Beach younger sibling, the 5Essential surveys to complete would be for both Plank and Long Beach.

To help us make our school better, please visit https://survey.5-essentials.org/Illinois/ to complete the survey.

Thanks for your help and Go Pirates!

Student Reminders and Parent Notifications: Cell phone usage and bringing in outside food to share

Cell Phones

We want to encourage students to maintain a strong focus on learning, as well as use their cell phones responsibly at the appropriate times. Please read the guidelines for cell phones below and join us in continually reminding our students why we have these guidelines. These guidelines are also found on page 17 in your child's planner.

  • During the school day, cell phones are to remain off and put away.
  • Cell phones may be used in the cafeteria during lunch times.
  • Cell phones may be allowed for instruction when directed by staff members only.

In the event students don’t follow the expectations, the following interventions will take place:

  • Staff will ask student to put the phone away.
  • Staff will ask to take the phone, and turn into the office.
  • IF students don’t comply a conduct referral will be written.
  • Administration will address the behavior, parents will be contacted to retrieve the phone.

Outside Vendor Food and "Table Parties"

Is not allowed to be brought in for students during lunch periods. Please do not drop off food for special student occasions or personal lunches. Students will be required to eat in the main office.

“Table parties” are also not allowed, where food items or drinks are brought and shared. Please understand this is a safety concern for students in the lunchroom.