Woodlawn Principal's Blog 10-22-21

We are in the back half of October and we are rolling along here at Woodlawn.  Thank you parents for all of your support to this point in the school year.  Although we have our moments of difficulty, the students are getting into a groove and behavior seems to be on the upswing.  The most challenging part of the school year is from November to February, so feel free to shoot an inspirational email to a teacher or staff member.  I will have the staff do the same thing for parents so that positive energy starts to flow in and out of the school.  

This Tuesday, October the 26th is an Early Release Day.  Classes will be dismissed at 1:30p.m.

Cross Country - State 

This past Saturday Woodlawn's own, Kyler Chou, participated in the 2021 IESA 3A State Cross Country meet. Kyler finished 113th (12:16.2 for the 2 mile course) out of 234 of the State's top runners. Woodlawn, Coach Frishman and Coach Berry are so proud of you! Congratulations on a fantastic season, Kyler. 

New *Attendance at School*

Attendance is one of the most powerful predictors of academic achievement and having your student in their seat, ready to learn for the entire school day will benefit them, their classmates, and our whole school community. Let’s work together to make sure your child has great attendance and can get the most out of their learning opportunities this school year.


We know that there are a wide variety of reasons that students are absent from school, from health concerns to transportation challenges. There are many people in our building prepared to help you if you or your student face challenges in getting to school regularly or on time. We promise to track attendance daily, to notice when your student is missing from class, communicate with you to understand why they were absent, and to identify barriers and supports available to overcome challenges you may face in helping your student attend school. Our parent handbook reflects legislative updates from the state and is ready for you to review.


We miss your student when they are not at school as we value their contributions to our school community. If your student is going to be absent, please contact the school in advance. If an absence was unplanned, please contact the school please contact the school office as soon as possible.


  • Send your child to school unless they are truly sick, such as fever, vomiting, diarrhea, contagious rash or showing any other COVID like symptoms.
  • Avoid appointments and travel when school is in session.
  • Keep track of your child’s attendance.
  • Set a regular bedtime and morning routine (including limiting how late your child may use any electronic devices) and finish homework and pack backpacks the night before.
  • Have a back-up plan for getting to school in case something comes up (this could be alternative bus routes, roads, or a plan with family members, neighbors, or other parents).
  • Communicate with the school about how we can work together to support your child’s attendance.


  • If your child has five unexcused absences we will reach out via phone and follow up with an email.
  • If your child has seven unexcused absences we will schedule a conference with you and your child to create a student success plan and help continued supports.
  • After 10 days of unexcused absences, and our supports and interventions haven’t helped get your student to school consistently, we are required to file a petition and you will be notified by formal letter that the case will be forwarded to the truancy department and the Lake County ROE, alleging a violation of RCW 28A.225.010, Illinois mandatory attendance law.


Excused: Medical appointment, illness, quarantine, death in the family, mental health day, religious holiday

Unexcused: Most other reasons for absence including vacation, sporting event, missing the bus, sleeping in, special occassions

Spooky Spirit Week & Red Ribbon Week  organized by Woodlawn’s Student Council 

Parents, encourage your student to join in the festivities!  

Monday 10/25 - Wear RED for Red Ribbon Day 

Tuesday 10/26 - Tie Dye Day

Wednesday 10/27 - Grade Dress Up  AND  Hat/Hoodie Day

  • 6th grade - Superhero or Villains 
  • 7th grade - Scary Movies
  • 8th grade - Dress from the Past

Thursday 10/28 - Pajama Day 

Friday 10/29 - Halloween Costumes (OR wear orange, black, purple)

Woodlawn Fall Party

Fall Party’s next week Wednesday, October 27th 6-8pm.  Have you purchased your $10 wristband? Come join the “CARNEVIL” to experience the haunted house, outdoor fire juggling magician, virtual reality, DJ, raffle baskets and so much more!  Online sales happening now thru Friday, lunch time sales will be next week Monday-Wednesday.


  • WE NEED PARENT VOLUNTEERS FOR SET UP AND NIGHT OF THE PARTY SUPERVISION.  IF YOU CAN HELP OUT AT ANY POINT, CONTACT YVONNE WENDLAND AT     [email protected] <----------What could be more fun than hanging with 300 middle schoolers dressed up for Halloween?  Expand your comfort zone.  

Visit the PTO Monthly Blog

Coffee Chat is back again this month!

Please join our D96 Student Resource Officer Michael Essig and School Counselor Jacqui Jessogne for a cup of coffee and conversation on Wednesday, October 27th from 8:30AM - 9:15AM. The presentation will focus on Middle School Students and Alcohol and Drugs.

Red Ribbon Week will also be a highlighted topic of conversation. However we will have plenty of time for questions on the topics discussed and anything else you would like to talk about!

We invite you to join us in person at Woodlawn or via zoom @ 


Meeting ID: 826 1008 1564

Passcode: 175291

Any questions please feel free to reach out to Jacqui Jessogne @ [email protected] We look forward to enjoying a cup of coffee with you!

Check out the Woodlawn Daily Announcements


Woodlawn Red Ribbon Week 2021

October 25th-October 29th, 2021

Red Ribbon Week is a national education week designed to teach our youth skills necessary to protect themselves from the dangers of alcohol and other drugs. Research shows that children are less likely to use alcohol and other drugs when parents and other role models are clear and consistent in their opposition to substance use and abuse. Woodlawn Red Ribbon Campaign promotes family, individual, and school responsibility for living healthy, drug-free lifestyles. We want to help our students feel empowered and in control of their own choices in order to create healthy lifestyles for themselves.

A child’s best asset is him/herself. Please join our Catalyst Club in demonstrating the importance of building the strengths, resiliencies, and values necessary to make healthy informed choices and positive decisions now and throughout their lives.  The Catalyst Club, created in conjunction with the Stand Strong Coalition, is a leadership group dedicated to supporting and encouraging a drug and alcohol-free lifestyle.

This year’s annual message/theme, supported by the Catalyst Club, is “What’s Your Why?” In addition to the education and programming our club will offer throughout the year, we encourage you to have regular and open conversations with your children about why you want them to remain substance free, why YOU live a healthy lifestyle,  and to help them think about why they will personally choose to remain substance free. Make sure to check out the calendar of events below and encourage your children to get involved! 

***A contest will be held between Aptakisic, Twin Groves, Woodlawn, Daniel Wright, and West Oak! Each day, we will have a spirit day theme and we are aiming for the highest percentage of participation across all five days, so please help your kids plan out how they are going to get into the spirit!   In the end, one school will be the winner and when we win, every student will receive a coupon for ice cream at Culver’s! This is a team effort, so please talk to your children and encourage participation in our spirit and educational events during Red Ribbon Week. 

Please contact me at [email protected] with any questions. 



Monday, October 25, 2021

  • REaDy for Red Ribbon Week—Wear RED!

Classroom Door Decorating Contest! 

Red Ribbon Week Kahoot! Students will participate independently. All entries due by November 1st!

  • Tuesday, October 26, 2021 

Color Your World Drug Free—Wear tie dye!

Classroom Door Decorating Contest! 

Culver’s Red Ribbon Week Coloring Sheet Contest begins! 

  • Wednesday, October 27, 2021

Put a Cap on Drugs—Hat/hoodie day!

What’s Your Why? Interactive display in all lunch periods

Classroom Door Decorating Contest! 

Culver’s Red Ribbon Week Coloring Sheet Contest: due by the end of the day on 11/1 to room 705!

  • Thursday, October 28, 2021

Dream of a Drug Free Life—Pajama Day!!!

Bumper magnet giveaway during lunch periods

Classroom Door Decorating Contest! 

Culver’s Red Ribbon Week Coloring Sheet Contest: due by the end of the day on 11/1 to room 705!

  • Friday, October 29, 2021

Say Boo to Drugs—Wear Halloween costumes!

Classroom Door Decorating Contest! 

Culver’s Red Ribbon Week Coloring Sheet Contest: due by the end of the day on 11/1  to room 705!

Red Ribbon Week Escape Room during all Flex classes

In the week following Red Ribbon Week

Contest winner announced for the consortium-wide Spirit Days contest!

Lake County STEM for Girls


NEW *Covid Metrics*

To stay up-to-date this school year on local metrics, please visit the COVID DASHBOARD for District 96. Our priority remains to keep our students safe and follow guidance from the CDC. If your student is identified as a "close contact", you will be notified individually through the contact tracing process. 

Finally, reality is a slap in the face at times.  I have a couple of stories that actually happened here this week.  The first story was relayed to me by Mrs. Zbylut, our 6th grade Language Arts teacher.  Mrs. Zbylut was using partnering cards that she had created very early in her career.  These cards allow students to find a partner and work together.  When a student asked her how long she had been teaching, she replied, “Nineteen….” 

The students couldn’t believe it!  “Wait, you were teaching way back in the nineteens?  Wow!”  Mrs. Zbylut took their disbelief in stride and acknowledged that she has been teaching for a while.  It made me realize that the kids look at some of us as fossils.  In my case, they may be correct.  

My second story came at a district level meeting.  During training for our coaches, we were asked to give our history in the district and share what we appreciate the most about working in D96.  After speaking with everyone, one of the teachers stood up and said, “This is my first year as a coach and I have been carrying this around, waiting for the right moment.”  This teacher proceeded to pull out a yearbook and share with the group that I was one of her teachers back in 1998.  It was a sweet thing for her to do and she shared a really nice picture of me.  The entire group had a good laugh and I was amazed at what time and the principalship has done to that young guy!  No matter what, I wouldn’t change a thing.  I love this school, the students, staff, community,   and what we have become.  

Have a good weekend.