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Reported by jennifer_fellers@ipsd.org on 1/8/22

Welcome Back

We are very excited to begin the 2022 school year! School will be in session beginning January 10 at 8:00am. Please be sure to charge chromebooks and organize your materials for school. As we enter into these winter months with unpredictable weather, please consider arriving to school a little earlier as we all know the car line can be extremely long. Also, as we return, please help us in reminding our students to wear their masks all the time— keep social distance in the classroom, hallways, and lunchroom— and wash their hands frequently. If your student is exhibiting any Covid19 symptoms, please keep him/her home for the day. Students have the opportunity to find all of their assignments in their google classroom. Please continue reading for additional reminders and we look forward to seeing your children and kicking off 2022.

Self-Certification Reminder
January 10

Monday, January 10, is a required self-certification day. Parents need to use ParentVUE to self-certify that students coming on campus are free of COVID-like symptoms. When you log in to ParentVUE, you will see a screen asking you to self-certify that your child is symptom free. If this step is not completed and your child is at school, a health services staff member will call you to discuss your child's health status.

The current transmission level is HIGH which requires monthly self-certification. Self-certification will only show up in ParentVUE on a school day. Please self-certify your child on January 10, 2022.

Please note, if you are using the ParentVUE app to self-certify, you need to make sure you are using the most updated version and are logged in. If you have any difficulties with the app, please use the desktop version to complete self-certification.

Self-certification does not mean you are saying your child is symptom free for an entire month, but rather that you will monitor your child’s health closely every day and keep them home when they are not feeling well. You can report your child's absence using ParentVUE after completing the self-certification process.

5Essentials Survey
January 11, 2022

Students in grades fourth through twelve across Illinois have the opportunity to participate beginning January 11, 2022 in the Illinois 5Essentials Survey implemented by the Illinois State Board of Education. This statewide survey is based on 20 years of research at the University of Chicago. It asks students about their experiences in school, giving school leaders critical student input to help develop school improvement plans.

Student participants will be required to log-in using their student ID and birth date in order to complete the survey. Students’ identities will be completely confidential. Teachers or administrators will never see individual responses to survey questions and will only receive aggregated information, such as the total percentage of students who agree homework assignments help them learn course material.

Please be aware that under the Protection of Pupil Rights Act. 20 U.S.C. Section 1232(c) (1) (A), you have the right to review a copy of the questions asked of your child. While the link to this year’s survey questions has not yet been made available, the questions are the same as last year and can be found on the Illinois 5Essentials website.

If you do not want your son or daughter to participate, please contact your child’s school by January 11, 2022.

Mental Health Days
January, 2022

Starting in January 2022, the State of Illinois will recognize “Mental Health Days” as an excused absence. A mental health day can be taken if a student experiences concerns such as anxiety, depression, somatic symptoms (headache, throwing up). Mental Health Days are not to be taken due to stress because of lack of work completion or test/presentation preparation, overscheduling of extracurricular or job hours. If your student is experiencing feelings of stress related to these items, please see your school counselor. Finally, Mental Health Days should not be used as an extension of a holiday break or vacation plans made by the family.

Students will be allowed up to five “Mental Health Days” a year. After the second “Mental Health Day,” is taken, students will be required to have a consultation with a school mental health provider. Students may also be referred to mental health resources.

If a student's concerns warrant parent notification, a phone call or email would be made directly to that parent.

Emergency Closing Information (From district 204 website 12/07/2021 https://www.ipsd.org/news.aspx?id=112368)

In light of emergency situations that have caused several local school districts to close for a day, we wanted to communicate with our families the procedures we will use if we were to close for a day due to unforeseen circumstances. Some of the reasons for the closures that have occurred in neighboring districts so far have been related to unsafe water, bus driver shortages, and credible threats. Some situations qualify as an e-learning day. When this is the case, the last day of school remains the same. If we are not able to designate it as an e-learning day, one of our emergency days at the end of the year would be added which would make the last day of school later.

If a situation occurs that requires Indian Prairie School District 204 to cancel in-person learning for a day, we will enact our e-Learning procedures. These procedures were put in place prior to the COVID-19 pandemic when we were trying to prepare for e-learning on severe weather days. Since these procedures were created in 2019, there have been many changes in our ability to provide learning opportunities remotely. The main changes have been the consistent use of Google classroom and technology availability for our youngest learners.

Whenever possible, notification regarding e-Learning Days will occur in the evening prior to the emergency day. Here is an FAQ regarding this type of day. Teachers will have the assigned work posted by the start of the school day for their given levels. For students who do not take their Chromebooks home each night (typically early childhood, kindergarten and first grade) teachers will have sent home a paper copy of a work packet for the students to complete. Teachers will be available to answer questions by email. If the emergency day is expected to be for one day only, the expectation will be for students to complete the work assigned independently. If, for some reason, the emergency situation is expected to be continued for an extended length of time, we will communicate additional plans to provide live instruction opportunities.

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