Kildeer Principal's Message- March 19th


Dear Kildeer Families,

We did it! Spring break has arrived and this time always serves as a milestone in the year. This past week was full of fun with our first-ever Trivia Blast! I was thrilled with the leadership from our incredible student council as well as the participation from our families and staff. Thank you to our PTO for planning such a great community event! It was a great way to kick off this week. 

NEW *Returning to In-Person Learning Information*

We are very excited to have additional students joining us in-person after spring break. Below is some information you need to know for a successful transition from remote to in-person learning.


If your child needs to take medication at school please bring the medication to the school nurse’s office in its original container along with this Medication Authorization Form.


PRIOR to Arrival: Questions for parents to consider-

  • Have you filled out the DAILY self-certification to ensure your child is symptom-free? 
  • Does your child have their mask on?
  • Does your child have their lanyard on? (Handed out on the first day of their in-person learning, must be worn upon entry to Kildeer every day after that.) 
  • Does your child have a lunch and water bottle?
  • If you need a lunch, you MUST pre-order. Call the office with questions!
  • 1st/2nd Graders ONLY: Is it their day to drop-off a saliva sample? Last Name A-L: Tuesdays, Last Name M-Z: Thursdays *Please note this will change to Thursdays for ALL 1st and 2nd graders starting the week of April 12th


All students should wear a mask upon arrival. Morning drop-off will start at 8:10 by the doors to the small gym, instead of the front entrance. Please pull your vehicle up to a cone and let your child out along the sidewalk. Thank you for waiting patiently in the vehicle line. 

If you would like to walk your child up to the school on the first day, please park your car in the side lot and utilize the crosswalk when there are no other cars driving. Once you reach the sidewalk, your child will independently enter through the small gym doors. Thank you for maintaining 6 feet of social distancing and wearing a mask. 

For first and second graders, bus tags will be attached to their backpacks. For any students that are returning in-person for the first time, ID badges with attached lanyards will be passed out. These MUST be worn upon entry to school. The barcode will allow us to scan your child’s information and ensure the daily certification screener has been completed by the parents. 

First and second graders need to bring their saliva samples on their designated day. Please see the specific information above as a reminder.  

Adults will be placed strategically around the school to support social distancing. Once your child has been scanned and confirmed there are no symptoms, he or she should go immediately to the classroom where the teacher will be eagerly waiting! We will not be utilizing lockers to avoid hallway congestion.


Each grade at Kildeer will have a designated lunch space, taking place outside of the classroom. Disinfecting hand wipes will be readily available and all tables and seats will be disinfected according to the guidelines. Students may bring a lunch from home or preorder. 

In-Person Lunch Preordering Info
Parents of in-person learners only, please check for an email sent this afternoon, March 19, with Subject Line: Fr Sch Dist 96: Preordering In-Person Lunches.

The email includes the required student ID # and directions to create an account and preorder in-person lunches for the week following Spring Break by the deadline of 6 PM on Mar. 28. Questions? Contact the public info coordinator [email protected]

After School

Students may be picked up outside the small gym, the same location used in the morning arrival procedure. As you park by a cone, please hold up a sign with your student's full name to show the adults helping at parent pick-up.  Our staff will work collaboratively to get your children out to you! 


Bus routing information will come by email to families over spring break. Please anticipate that busses may be running late.  If you have any bus route questions, please call the office.  Our arrival and dismissal routines within the school building have been designed to maintain social distancing.  For purposes of social distancing and to maintain order on the bus, all students will be directed to sit in an assigned seat separated from peers.  Siblings may sit together.  Please prepare your child for this routine to sit where the driver or school assigns and to always stay seated in their seat.  As a reminder, complete the daily self-certification before your child gets on the bus or comes to the school by parent drop-off.  All children coming to school must wear masks on district transportation as well as in the school building. 


If you have any changes for after-school plans, please call the front office or email Mrs. Hagen, Mrs. Wright, and your child’s classroom teacher on the same email. This will ensure that someone sees this change.  If you need to communicate past 2:00 p.m., please call the office! 

General Safety Protocols

Throughout the building, hand sanitizing stations, stand spots, disinfectant wipes, 6-foot indicators, etc. are prominently displayed.  All staff will consistently work with our students and each other to ensure we are following the 3 W's with fidelity: Wear a mask, wash your hands, watch your distance!

Student Materials for In-Person

Your child’s homeroom teacher will communicate the expectation for which materials to bring to school. Please see this document from our specials team. 


It is still chilly!  We may go outside for short breaks so please ensure that your child has the proper outerwear. 

Children will be bringing iPads and Logitech iPad "crayons" between home and school daily.  Please develop a routine of charging both every night and putting them in their backpack each morning.  A helpful tip is to post a sign at child eye level on the door where your child will exit in the morning.  You can make a picture checklist of this and anything else to support your child to develop independence with morning routines.

MOST IMPORTANTLY: Parents must do the DAILY self-certification for their child.  Parents must submit a daily self-certification prior to their student being allowed to attend in person. Parents will need to download the TeacherEase app if they haven't already in order to access the daily self-certification form.  Please see this video for further instruction: (Dist 96: In-Person Parent Video Instruction).


We are confident that the District 96 community will rise to the occasion and partner with us to ensure the safety and success of our hybrid learning plan. Please think carefully about your commitment to our partnership before sending your child to school.  Please review our In-Person Learning Protocols

Masks for In-Person Learners

Send your student to school with a comfortable mask that complies with CDC/ISBE guidelines, ensuring that the face-covering fully covers the mouth and nose and that the covering fits snugly against the sides of the face with no gaps.

NEW *Daily Self-Certification Questions Revision*

The questions on the Daily Self-Certification will be changing slightly as of Monday, March 29th.  Please read the questions carefully when completing the self-certification after spring break.

NEW *Population Screening Schedule Change*

Grades 1-2 will have a new drop-off schedule for their population screening. Grades 3-5 will maintain their current schedule. 

Beginning April 12, the new schedule will be: 

Kildeer Grades 1-2: Thursday

NEW *Safety Drills* 

All schools are required to hold fire/evacuation, severe weather, and lockdown drills.  We recognize some content could potentially be frightening for students.  Please be assured that presentations to students are developmentally appropriate.  Teachers and support staff are attentive to students’ emotions during instruction and drills.  Specific drill dates are not shared with parents.  At school, we conduct drills at unknown times so that students and staff can respond authentically as would be needed in an actual emergency.  You can expect lockdown education to be provided to your child when we come back from break followed shortly after by a drill.  We will maintain our social distancing requirements throughout all drills.  Please let me know if you have any questions. 

NEW *Calculators During Math*

Some teachers have noticed that students are using calculators to help complete math assignments and/or assessments. Please know that there is never a time when an elementary teacher will ask the students to use a calculator in math. Elementary math provides the critical foundation for math in both middle and high school. Using a calculator, even for simple computation, potentially creates skill and knowledge gaps that can hinder mathematical progress in the future.

*NEW* Calendar Reminders

Spring Break: Students will not be in attendance from March 22nd through March 26th.  Classes will resume the week of March, 29th.

Thursday, April 1st is a half-day and students will be dismissed at 11:45.  Students will follow this schedule on 4/1/21.

Friday, April 2nd students are not in attendance.

Monday, April 5th students are not in attendance.

Tuesday, April 6th students are not in attendance.

Revised March–June 2021 Calendar

Please refer to this REVISED March–June 2021 Calendar (1-page), reflecting in-person learning schedule changes announced in Superintendent Julie Schmidt's Mar. 17 message.

NEW *Parent Input for 2021-2022 Class Placement Survey*

Creating Balanced Class Lists - Parent Input for Class Placement

Creating balanced class lists that meet the needs of all students is a tremendously difficult job that takes many hours of thoughtful dialogue between classroom teachers, administrators, and specialists. We at Kildeer School take this process very seriously. The process for class list creation is as follows:

-Teachers think about the social and academic needs of each of their current students while recording pertinent information to assist in the decision-making process.

-Grade level teachers, the principal, specials area teachers, and specialists meet together to form class lists that are balanced in terms of academic, social, and emotional needs as well as considering friendships. This is no easy task and often takes several meetings. This team of educators considers each child’s personality, academic needs, friendship patterns, etc. as they make a match for each individual child.

-This team of educators creates a draft set of class lists taking into consideration parent input.  

-Class lists are then revised in August with summer changes for students who move in or out of the district.

-Class rosters are never final until they are released to families in August.

This process happens at grades 2-5. Willow Grove creates the class lists for our incoming 1st graders.  Our 5th-grade team provides data to Woodlawn related to placement decisions at the middle school level.

We strongly believe that this detailed and collaborative process creates learning environments that benefit all students. It is a delicate balancing act that takes much consideration and thought by professionals who know and care about your children. Our goal is to create balanced class lists that promote the success of each child. Please know that your child is placed in a classroom for very specific reasons. The process benefits all students.  Because of the input and thought given by teachers, specialists, parents, and the principal, we are very reluctant to make changes once this process occurs, as removing or moving one child can disrupt the balance of an entire class, impacting all students.

I welcome any insight you wish to share about your child’s strengths, needs, and learning style. I will take into consideration pertinent information received on or before FRIDAY, APRIL 30th. Please remember, while we welcome your input, specific teacher requests will not be honored.

If you'd like to share your input, please take the following survey: Kildeer Class Placement Survey for 21-22.  

Repeat *VAPL Book Talks* 

Take some time in MARCH to see some new recommendations by the Vernon Area Public Library. You won't want to miss this!

1st grade: 1st-grade favorites

2nd grade: 2nd-grade favorites

3rd grade: 3rd-grade favorites

4th and 5th grade: 4th and 5th-grade favorites

For more book talk recommendations, please visit our Book Talk Help Guide at 


Our District 96 nurses are closely following the Illinois Department of Public Health school exclusion decision tree to determine when students are eligible to return to turn school. Thank you for your patience with students who have had to isolate or quarantine due to illness, household, illness, positive COVID-19, and/or close contact status. The building nurse will request appropriate documentation for students to return to school. While you may receive this documentation outside of school hours, the nurse will contact families regarding a return date upon receipt during the next school day. 

If you would like to be in touch with one of the District 96 nurses, please note the hours that they are available. 

Country Meadows, Ivy Hall, Kildeer, Prairie, Willow Grove: 8:00-3:15 

Twin Groves, Woodlawn 7:30-2:45

Repeat *Spring Assessments*

The Illinois Assessment of Readiness (IAR) and the Illinois Science Assessment (ISA) are tentatively scheduled for later this spring. We are waiting for further guidance from the state concerning the administration of these assessments before solidifying a testing schedule.

Repeat *2021–22 Registration Emails Were Sent Thurs., Mar. 4*

Please check for registration email(s) for the 2021–22 school year, sent Thurs., Mar. 4.

Each registration email includes a link and a unique “snapcode” needed for access to register your returning student for 2021–22. EVERY student returning to District 96 for the school year ahead must be registered.

Information you provided previously will appear in your student’s online registration record. Please check that information carefully and update it if it is not accurate.

Completing and submitting online registration and making payment no later than Apr. 15, 2021, will save families $20 in registration cost per student. Fees increase after Apr. 15.

Questions? Please send email to [email protected] or call 847.459.4260, ext. 8022.

Repeat *Obtaining Free Meals*

Preorder free meals for in-person students by 6 PM on Thursday for the week ahead. Order at only for your student's in-person days.

Pick up meal supplies for 5 days for remote students on Wednesdays from 11 AM– 2 PM at Twin Groves or Woodlawn. No preordering needed.

Please direct questions to the public info coordinator [email protected]

*Tech Hub*

KCSD96 Family Technology Hub! The District 96 Family Technology Hub is designed to guide families through technology tools related to Enhanced Remote Learning. On this site, you can find links to the recordings and the corresponding Slides decks for the parent/family informational sessions from last week. You can also find tutorials on how to use  ZOOM, Schoology, Seesaw, Clever, Notability, and other iPad essential tools for student learning. Additionally, there is a link to email the technology support desk. Please save or bookmark this site. It will be updated with tools, resources, and tutorials through remote learning to better support your family.

Please email [email protected] with any tech-related support needed.

***  PTO News ***

Check out the blog! CLICK HERE!

  • TRIVIA BLAST-Thanks to all that attended and helped to make it a success! 

As we head into spring break, we look forward to the spring season of new beginnings, which officially starts on March 20th.  We will be hearing more birds singing as beautiful flowers come into bloom.  Spring will also bring a new beginning for students who plan to return to in-person learning after spring break.  We are very excited to welcome these additional students back to school. There are great things on the horizon!

I wish you a relaxing and joyful spring break ahead!


Mrs. Vail Kieser