Cardinal Corner

September 1-15, 2020

Important Dates

Sept. 1: First Day of School

Sept. 10: 6th, 7th and 8th Virtual Curriculum Night, 6:30-8pm

  • This event will be for all 6th, 7th, & 8th parents. More details to come!

Principal's Column

Dear South Parents and Guardians:

We hope your family is enjoying these last few days of summer vacation. At South, we have devoted a great deal of time preparing instruction and collaborating with our colleagues to plan for our educational journey.

We recognize this year is unique and that our remote learning setting is not what anyone wished for. You have our promise that we will try our best each and every day to engage your children in learning. Please understand that students will not be lectured every minute of each period. Teachers are directed to teach as they would normally, providing time for individual and group work. You may find your child reading or working from a book during regular school hours. The most important part is that students begin and end each period in their Zoom classroom.

For the first two weeks, teachers will be building routines, practices, and classroom structures. They will be providing instruction and activities on social-emotional learning to build a safe and effective classroom. Once these are built, teachers can focus on academic instruction.

We were very excited to meet many of our students and families during the recent materials pickup and are ready to get this school year started. If you were unable to participate in the school-wide materials pickup, please contact us at (847) 398-4250.

We anticipate there will be some bumps and hiccups along the way, but we will all work through these, all the while learning and growing together. We ask for respect and kindness towards each other in our South community as we embrace this journey.

As always, if you need assistance or guidance, feel free to contact us.


Dr. Jim Morrison, Principal

South Middle School

First Day of School - Tuesday, September 1, 2020

Below is a link to an important document. This document contains the Zoom link that your child needs to attend their Hombase class on September 1st:

Schoology Zoom Links for 9/1/2020 Homebase

Your child has already received this document in their district Gmail account.

On Tues., Aug. 18, 2020, you should have received an email that indicated your child's team and Homebase. Using this information along with the Schoology Zoom links document, you will find the link for your child's first class on September 1st at 7:50am.

During Homebase, your child will receive his/her full schedule, along with instructions on how to use Schoology to locate the Zoom links for the rest of their classes. Here is a link to the first-day class schedule.

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Remote Learning

Here are some middle school highlights:

  • CLASSES: All classes will mirror the typical 10-period SMS school day and will align with the AHSD25 curriculum, using a balance of online textbooks and digital instruction.
  • ATTENDANCE: Attendance will be taken each period. Click here for details on reporting absences.
  • MAKING CONNECTIONS: During the first two weeks of school, staff will focus on creating relationships and connections with their students. Staff will build an online classroom community, empowering successful online learners, and identifying and supporting student gaps and learning needs. Social-emotional learning lessons will be embedded in the curriculum to support the unique needs of middle school students.
  • ACCOUNTABILITY/GRADING: Teachers will share regular feedback, scores, grades, etc., related to student work with students and parents. PowerSchool and Schoology portals are open for you to view. We will continue with our grading system and report cards as if we were in-person.
  • STUDENT EXPECTATIONS: Students are expected to attend their classes every day via Zoom, with the Zoom cameras turned on and are to be fully engaged. If your student is unable to participate in class on any given day, it is important that you report absences.
  • SPECIAL EDUCATION: Any special education service that is listed on the IEP will be provided via synchronous activities or asynchronous activities. Students with IEPs including resource services will follow their class remotely. Students with IEPs receiving instructional program support will or have been contacted, regarding a combination of in-person and remote learning. Please contact your child's case manager if you have any questions.
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Tips for Student Success During Remote Learning

It is very important to develop routines for your child(ren) to prepare them for the start of the school year. Please ensure they understand that there will be higher expectations for this year's remote learning. Expectations that were not nearly as demanding as in the past. We are approaching this school year with the same rigorous curriculum expectations as a typical in-person school year. Please view the handy information graphic below which provides helpful tips.
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Important Documents

Last Friday during materials pickup you should find the following printed documents in your child's box:

  1. Student email account and password (on the AHSD25 Student Technology Checkout Form)
  2. AHSD25 Student Technology Checkout Form. This does not need to be signed via paper and pencil. The document below has a Google Form to sign it electronically. This is for consent to use district technology devices and resources.
  3. Information about optional insurance for your child's Chromebook.
  4. Student directions on how to log into the Chromebook, Powerschool, and Schoology.
  5. Zoom is now a part of Schoology for classes. Student's will learn how to get to their other courses during Homebase on the first day (Sept. 1st).
  6. Parent Schoology & PowerSchool account setup.

If you still have questions or issues about your child's Chromebook after your child receives their materials box, please email for further support.

Chromebooks Usage Form - MUST BE COMPLETED!

PARENT ACTION ITEM: Each student will need to have this AHSD25 Student Technology Checkout Form 2020-21 completed by 9/1/20.

This is a form that parents and students should complete together.

School Supply Lists

Here is a link to the 2020-2021 School Supply List. One advantage of the remote learning structure is that not all of the school supply items on these lists are things that are necessary to have by the first day of school. While you are welcome to purchase all of these items by September 1st, during the first week of school the teachers will communicate with the students regarding materials needed for remote learning.

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MAP Testing

Students will take the Mathematics and Reading MAP tests during the testing window of Mon., Sept. 14 – Wed. Oct. 7, 2020. More information will be provided soon.

National School Lunch Program

Wed., Sept. 2, 2020, will be the first day for food distribution of the National School Lunch Program. Meals will be available for pick up on Wednesdays between 4:30-6:30pm at Thomas Middle School. Breakfast and lunch will be provided for each day of the week that the student will be in attendance. Please note that meals are not provided for holidays, SIP days, Institute days, etc.

All students enrolled in District 25 are able to participate in the meal program. There is a cost for the paying students. A 5-day bag will cost $24.25 and if a family orders that bag, the cost will be deducted from their students lunch account. Meals will be applied to the MealTime system daily. Free and Reduced students will receive the bag at no cost.

Student Handbook/South Procedures and "In's and Out's"

When registering, you were introduced to the Arlington Heights School District 25 Handbook. Here is a link to our South Procedures and “In’s and Out’s”. Please review with your child(ren) to begin the new school year.

Physical and Dental Forms

Physical/Dental forms are due for all 6th-grade students for the start of the school year, even though we are beginning with remote learning. Please submit properly completed paperwork to the office as soon as possible.

Physicals are due for all grade level students who participate in any and all sports!

PTA Information

PTA Website

Here is a link to South's PTA Website.

PTA Membership

Join South PTA today to support the programs we sponsor for our students and staff. If you didn't join when registering your student, click here:

Not sure if you joined? Email our membership chair, Catherine Olson, at

South Middle School Spiritwear

Get Your South Middle School Spiritwear!: Order online for home delivery.


It is important that our parent community stays informed, especially as conditions surrounding the coronavirus pandemic continues to change. Information about COVID-19 and how it impacts District 25’s school plans for 2020-2021 is fluid and will be continually evaluated and updated in accordance with local, state, and federal guidelines. In order to ensure that our parent community is as informed as possible, we put together the following guide on how you can best stay up-to-date as the 2020-2021 school year gets underway.

Website: visit for all information that pertains to District 25 and COVID-19.

District 25 Calendar

Office Information

The SMS Office is open Monday - Friday 7am - 3pm.

Address: 400 South Highland Avenue, Arlington Heights, IL 60005

Twitter: @AHSD25South

Main Line: (847) 398-4250

Absence Line: (847) 506-6999 x7300