News

January 25, 2021

Greetings Margaret Mead Community,

Last week was filled with a lot of positive energy as we continue to show progress in this most unusual school year!  On Tuesday, we welcomed our students enrolled in “hybrid in-person learning” to Mead—seeing them learn again in our classrooms felt right again and lifted our spirits.  Also on Tuesday, District 54 announced that we are making plans to increase the number of in-person instructional days at Mead up to five days.  Our work to increase in-person learning for our Mustangs is a critical step to ensure we stay true to our values of Fostering Academic Achievement and Creating a Positive Culture.  Please read below for more information about these goals. 

Fostering Academic Achievement

Increase in In-Person Learning:  On Tuesday, January 19, District 54 communicated that we are examining revisions to our hybrid model, offering up to five full days of on-campus instruction for students.  We say “up to five days” because we cannot finalize our plans until we confirm how many students will attend in person.  Reminder that families wishing to change the enrollment for their children should have already contacted me by this past Thursday.  We will not be accepting changes in enrollment selection for the remainder of this school year.  A start date for additional days of attendance will be communicated once we confirm the number of students attending in person.  We do not anticipate any changes to the current remote learning instructional day. We will continue to offer full remote instruction as an option for students throughout the pandemic.  We will continue to enforce numerous mitigation measures to keep our students and staff safe while they are at school.  Everyone will be required to complete the D54 Screener and temperature check each day before entering a school or boarding a bus; to wear masks and social distance at school; and to stay home when they are ill or need to quarantine. We will continue to follow social distancing guidelines with desks 6 feet apart in our classrooms.  More information, including a list of frequently asked questions, can be found on our website at sd54.org/reopeningD54

Wednesday, January 27:  Reminder that this Wednesday is a student non-attendance day.  Our Mustangs have the option to participate in the Great D54 Paper Airplane Challenge.  Mead will have a Padlet where students can share a picture, post or video of their work from the day. The interactive link for activities will be sent by your child’s teachers on the morning of Wednesday, January 27.

Winter In-Person MAP Assessment:  Thank you for partnering with us as we prepare for our upcoming Winter In-Person MAP Assessment.  On Friday, I emailed your student’s specific MAP information including your student’s testing day, testing location, and testing proctor.  You will also receive a letter in the mail with the same information.  Please read below for important information about our Winter In-Person MAP testing days:

  • Because we will be testing on both February 4 and 5, there will be NO live instruction on these two days.  Instead, teachers will be posting assignments in their Google Classrooms for the students to complete independently on the day that they are not testing at Mead. 
  • Students will test with their Advocacy teachers in their Advocacy locations at Mead.  To limit student movement, your student will be staying in their Advocacy location for the entire day including lunch.  Students will be able to use the restroom when needed; the restroom will be supervised by a Mead staff member who will limit the number of students using the restroom to ensure social distancing. 
  • Students will be required to wear masks and maintain six feet of social distance at all times during their testing day. 
  • On testing day, students should bring their Chromebook, charger, lunch, and a book to read.
  • Students enrolled in virtual ONLY will need to be dropped off at Mead by 7:30 am and picked up from 2:00-2:15 pm on the day of their test.  Virtual ONLY Parents/guardians are responsible for transporting students to and from school on their testing day/time because there will be no District 54 transportation provided on these days for virtual ONLY students.  The following are procedures which have been established to ensure student safety during drop off and pick up:
    • For safety reasons when busses are present, you will not be allowed to enter the Mead parking lot to drop off or pick up your student on these days. 
    • Students being transported by car must be dropped off and picked up either along Gibson or Biesterfield.  Please be careful where you park.  Parking too close to a crosswalk can restrict pedestrian visibility and result in a ticket.  All students should exit and enter cars from the passenger side of the car only.  All students should cross the street only at the crosswalk.
  • Please see below for the schedule for February 4 and 5:
    • Before 7:30 am:
      • Hybrid In-Person learning students who take the bus will be dropped off at Mead and enter through doors 5 or 18.
      • Hybrid In-Person learning students who do not take the bus will be dropped off at Mead and enter through door 2.
      • Virtual learning students will be dropped off at Mead and can enter through doors 2 (east side of the building), 5 (north side of the building), or 18 (south side of the building). 
    • 7:30-7:40 am:
      • Once students enter Mead at doors 2, 5, or 18, they will wait in line to get their temperatures taken by a Mead staff member. 
      • Behind the temperature checkers at each entrance, staff members will be available to point the students to their Advocacy locations.
    • 7:40-8:00 am:
      • Advocacy teachers will take attendance.
      • Virtual ONLY students will be mailed a paper copy of the District 54 Health Screener that they need to complete and bring with them to give to their Advocacy teachers when they arrive.  Please note that if a student answers “yes” to any of the screener questions, then they must stay home and call Mead to inform the office.  The paper copy of the screener will be including in a mailing this week to all families indicating testing day, testing location, and testing proctor.
    • 8:00-10:30 am:  Students will take the MAP ELA test from 8:00 to 10:30 am
    • 10:30-11:30 am:  During lunch, students will stay in their Advocacy locations to eat.  Students will be allowed to take their masks off to eat but must wear them when not eating.  Six feet of social distance will be required.  Proper cleaning protocols will be followed after eating including cleaning eating area.   
    • 11:30 am – 2:00 pm:  Students will take the MAP Mathematics test from 11:30 am to 2:00 pm
    • 2:00-2:15 pm:  Students will be dismissed from Advocacy locations in a “staggered” fashion to limit the number of students who are passing in the halls and exiting the buildings.
    • After 2:00 pm:
      • Students who are being picked up by their parent/guardian will proceed directly to their car. 
      • Students who are walking home will proceed home.
      • Students who take the bus will proceed directly to their bus. 

Winter Student Goal-Setting Conferences on February 11 and 12:  We look forward to connecting with you at our upcoming winter conferences on Thursday, February 11 and Friday, February 12.  Similar to the Fall, you will have the opportunity to sign up online for ten-minute individual conferences with your child’s teachers over Zoom.  Because space is limited, we ask that you only schedule conferences with teachers whom you have questions/concerns about your child’s classroom performance.  For our eighth grade families, please contact your student’s high school if you have questions about high school class placement—our teachers will not have information at conferences to answer questions regarding class placement for next school year.  The times of the conferences will be on Thursday, February 11 from 12:00-4:30 pm and 5:15-7:45 pm and on Friday, February 12 from 7:30-9:30 am.  We will be sending out the link to sign-up for conferences on Friday, February 5.

Student Attendance:  All students are expected to be present for learning daily.  Please read below for student attendance reminders: 

  • Attendance will be taken daily, periods one through nine.
  • If your child is unable to participate in learning either virtually or in-person, please call the Mead attendance line at 847-357-6002.  Please ensure you call even if your child is missing only part of the day (for example, to attend a doctor’s appointment).   
  • If your child is expected to be at Mead for in-person instruction and they will need to attend virtually instead, please call the attendance line to inform us. 
  • Reminder that parents/guardians began receiving an automated email when their child has been marked absent from a class.  The purpose of this communication is to provide daily, real time information to parents regarding their child’s attendance to each class period.  In the event you have contacted our front office to inform us that your child will not be attending school for the day, then you will not receive the automated email.
  • We encourage parents to check the Infinite Campus Parent Portal on a daily basis to see a more detailed breakdown of their child’s attendance and academic progress.  

High School Information for Class of 2025:  For information on your student’s high school transition, please visit the D211 Incoming Freshman Information.  The Student Services Directors at all 211 high schools can also assist you with any questions that you may have.  

Technology Tips:

  • D54 Virtual Learning Website and Technology Support:  Please visit our Virtual Learning Website to find helpful resources you and your student can use to help troubleshoot any technology problems you are experiencing.  For more immediate concerns, please email [email protected] so that we can troubleshoot the problem via phone or email. If the problem cannot be resolved, we have a technology drop-off program. To schedule an appointment to drop off a broken Chromebook, you must first email [email protected].  Please do not stop by without an appointment. By making an appointment, we can abide by the rules of social distancing and ensure we have a replacement device ready for you when you arrive.
  • Troubleshooting if you are having Chromebook issues:  Please remind your student to completely power down their Chromebook and charge it each night.  By completely powering down the Chromebook each night, when your student turns it back on in the morning, the Chromebook will search for updates, and automatically download them.  Closing the screen each night only puts the Chromebook in a low power sleep mode.  If your student only does this, then it may cause the Chromebook to not function properly, not connect to Zoom, etc.  To properly power down the Chromebook, your student should follow the steps listed below:
    • Click on the time in the lower right corner
    • Click on the shutdown button
    • Whenever possible, plug your Chromebook into an outlet when in use.

Creating a Positive Culture

 

PTA:  Please register as an official Mead PTA member by clicking the link here: Member Hub.  Please visit the Mead PTA Facebook page for more information about our fantastic parent organization!  Please read below for important information from our Mead PTA:

  • January’s Dine to Donate will be Wednesday January 27 at Riccardo’s 1170 S Roselle Rd in Schaumburg from 4:00-8:00 pm.  Please share this with friends and family who are in the area as a percentage of proceeds goes directly to the PTA.  
  • Please join the PTA and Mead Junior High for Family Trivia Night on Wednesday, Feb 10 at 7:00 pm.  Kick off the long weekend with Mead fun facts and a great time for all!  Mr. Ross and Mrs. Carey will host the event.  Fantastic prizes will be awarded to the top three teams.  Details on how to sign up for this event will be coming soon!  Feel free to invite friends and family to have a fun night for all!
  • Amazon Smile: Amazon has a program that donates 0.5% of all your purchases to a charity of your choice – at NO COST to you.  All you have to do is to (1) use https://smile.amazon.com or change your Amazon app setting to use Amazon Smile and (2) Select “Margaret Mead Jr High School PTA” as the charity.  Please see the attached document HERE for specific instructions on this setup.
  • Thank you to those of you who purchased a Mead Tie-Dye T-Shirt to benefit the Mead PTA.  The shirts are now available for pickup at Mead!  Please stop by the school and come to our main entrance (door 1) anytime between 7:00 am and 3:30 pm to pick up your shirt.  Anyone who is still interested in purchasing a Mead Tie-Dye T-Shirt, the PTA is happy to announce that they will be including the t-shirt in their upcoming Mead Spirit Wear Sales in the spring.  Please look for more information coming soon about our Mead PTA Spirit Wear sale!   

School District 54 Food Pantry at Mead:  The D54 Food Pantry at Mead is ready to serve our District 54 families.  Although you will not be able to come into the pantry due to COVID restrictions, you will be able to place an order online and pick up at the pantry site.  Please click on this link to place your order online.  If you have any questions, please call (847) 357-6000.  Our D54 Food Pantry Supervisors at Mead are Sherry Scheel and Beth Knief.  You can also access other community food distribution centers available for our Mead families:

  • Willow Creek Mobile Food Truck:
    • Muir Elementary School 1973 Kensington Ln, Hoffman Estates, IL 60169 from 4:00-5:00 pm every Tuesday
    • Keller Jr. High School 820 Bode Rd, Hoffman Estates, IL 60169 from 4:00-5:00 pm every Friday
  • For our families of students who qualify for Free & Reduced Lunch, please visit the following locations open every Thursday from 4:00-5:00 pm:
    • Palatine HS:  1111 N. Rohlwing Road Palatine, Il 60074
    • Fremd HS: 1000 S. Quentin Road Palatine, IL 60067
    • Conant HS: 700 E. Cougar Trail Hoffman Estates, IL 60169
    • Schaumburg HS: 1100 W. Schaumburg Road Schaumburg, IL 60194
    • Hoffman HS: 1100 W. Higgins Road Hoffman Estates, IL 60169

District 54 has set up a District 54 Food Pantry Donation page for families to donate money through the Infinite Campus Portal.  To make a monetary donation, please log in to the Infinite Campus Portal HERE

Yearbook:  Order forms are available online on our Mead website or on the Jostens site (jostensyearbooks.com).  The cost of the yearbook this year is $20.  Because of our unique school year, we will need your help to fill the book!  Jostens offers a program called ReplayIt.  This program will allow you to upload photos of your student—we will accept posed photos of students participating in virtual learning or any of the wonderful after school clubs and sports that Mead has to offer.  Pictures should only include your Mead student in them (social distancing guidelines should be followed with all pictures).  Once you have collected some pictures of your student, please see the attached FLYER for how to upload them to the ReplayIt site via Jostens.  If you have any questions at all, please contact Julie Morrison ([email protected]) or Amelia Reimel ([email protected]). 

Virtual Sports and Clubs:  If you would like your student to participate in our upcoming virtual sport offerings of girls volleyball and wrestling, then please complete our online permission slip here: Girls Volleyball and Wrestling.  Please note that a current physical is NOT required to participate.  If your student is interested in participating in any of our virtual clubs, please have them visit our “After-School Clubs” Google Classroom and then click on the link of the club during the day and time it is being hosted.  No permission slips are required.  Our virtual club offerings this school year include Drama Club, Games Club, and Yearbook.   

Important upcoming dates:

  • January 27:  No school
  • February 4-5:  Winter In-Person MAP (please note: there is no live instruction on these days)
  • February 11:  Half-day of student attendance (students dismissed at 10:40 am)
  • February 11-12:  Winter Student Goal-Setting Conferences
  • February 15:  No school
  • March 2:  End of second trimester

Please visit our Mead website for the building calendar.  Don’t forget to “Like” us on Facebook, follow us on Twitter, and watch our Mead YouTube Channel to stay updated with the latest news and information about the great things happening at Mead.  As always, if you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact me.  Thank you for your continued support and commitment to ensuring your student’s educational success.

Scott