Dear Parents and Community Members:
I hope this message finds you and your families safe and well.
Earlier today, Illinois Governor J. B. Pritzker announced that remote learning in Illinois will be extended through the end of the 2019-20 school year.
Although in-person learning in our school buildings has been suspended for the remainder of this school year, in District 96 I assure you our entire staff remains committed to learning and engaging with our students through remote learning–as well as continuing with our food distribution program.
Like you, we are saddened by the reality that our school buildings and your classrooms will not reopen this school year, due to this public health crisis. So many of you have worked so hard to learn and grow in both the classroom and in your extracurricular activities that hearing today’s announcement may feel like a step back.
You were looking forward to events that have had to be canceled. At my house, my 8th-grade daughter is disappointed that she will not be playing a final soccer season for her middle school or participating in an in-person 8th-grade graduation ceremony next month.
Remember, though, the final chapter of this school year hasn’t been written yet. These past few weeks have proven our District 96 community is more resilient, more capable, and more compassionate than maybe what we previously realized. I’m confident our collective strength will shine through during the remainder of the school year and we will emerge even stronger. I know that you will continue to connect with your teachers and your classmates through the month of May.
Given the governor’s announcement today, we will finalize our remote learning plans through the end of May and identify upcoming remote learning teacher planning days. When confirmed, I will share these updates with you in the coming days, as well as the official last day of learning.
This is not the school year that any of us imagined, but I want to thank you for your patience and understanding as we work our way through this unprecedented situation together. This period of Remote Learning offers us new ways to learn and grow and emerge from this pandemic with enhanced capabilities and understanding. Plans will be underway soon for the return to in-person learning next school year.
It’s important we continue to work collaboratively and support our students. I can't thank you enough for your partnership in meeting this challenge together.
Julie Schmidt, District 96 Superintendent of Schools