Dear District 96 Community:
In this pandemic year, it’s all too easy to focus on all that we cannot do and what we have lost. Weeks and months of 2020 have passed in a blur of skipped traditions and canceled plans.
Maybe it’s the Thanksgiving holiday ahead that has reminded me of something I very much appreciate now–weeknight family dinners with my freshman daughter. They are a rare luxury in schedule-packed pre pandemic times, but now they are possible and are times I treasure.
Even as parents and their children yearn for a return to a safe and wide-open “normal,” we’ll miss these opportunities for conversations, board games, jigsaw puzzles, art projects, meals cooked together, and phone calls to catch up with friends and family. These won’t happen as readily when our world returns to its previous pace.
We demonstrate resilience and are our best selves when we help our children find strength they didn’t realize they have and appreciation for what they do have.
I’ve been made aware that our food pantry operated by the Exceptional Learners Collaborative (ELC) is again appealing to the community to help replenish supplies of canned goods (chicken, tuna, pasta sauce/pasta, soup, fruit, veggies); cereals and oatmeal; and dried beans, rice, and pasta. If your circumstances allow it and you choose to donate a little or a lot, please bring items on days school is in session to the ELC, 990 Corporate Woods Pkwy, Vernon Hills, from 8 AM–3 PM. Please socially distance when delivering donations and ring the doorbell to deliver perishable foods and/or gift cards.
I wish your students and your family safe and happy holidays November 25–27.
--Julie Schmidt, District 96 Superintendent of Schools