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Kennedy's Spotlight News

Principal's Newsletter

  • Talk 203 1-11-17

    Posted by Brian Valek at 1/11/2017

    Kennedy families,

     

    Please be aware of these announcements for the week:

     

    Kennedy News

    Promoting Mental Health Awareness

    By Andrew O’Brien, Assistant Principal

     

    During the month of October, Kennedy Junior High recognized Mental Health Awareness Week by challenging students to fight stigma, advocate for individuals in need of support, and bring awareness to the impact that mental health conditions have on those we interact with each day. 

     

    During the months of December and January, students have observed and will continue to see helpful information posted around the building on one of the most commonly reported mental health conditions among middle school students:  Anxiety. 

     

    Although it is natural for all students to experience anxiety from time to time, NAMI estimates that approximately 8% of children and teenagers experience the negative impact of an anxiety disorder at school and home.  Such individuals often experience a variety of emotional symptoms (e.g., feelings of apprehension or dread, tense and jumpy, restlessness or irritability, anticipating the worst)and physical symptoms (e.g., pounding or racing heart, upset stomach, and sweating without activity). 

     

    If your child experiences these symptoms at school on a regular basis, please encourage your child to have a discussion with his/her counselor, the school social worker, or the school psychologist, who will provide useful tips, strategies, and support.  For more information on this condition and others, please visit the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) website at www.nami.org.   

    Home and School Announcements

    From Aarthi Ramalingam, Home and School President

     

    Kennedy Home & School is looking to fill two co-chair positions -- one for Nominations & one for By-Laws -- for the current school year 2016-17.

     

    Nominations co-chair will help fill open Committee Chair positions and open Executive Board positions for the upcoming school year 2017-18. 

     

    By-laws co-chair will work with the other co-chair to review the Kennedy Home & School bylaws and will help pass any amendments to the bylaws, if necessary. Since this is an ad hoc committee that meets bi-annually, this committee will not be formed next year. 

     

    Please contact Home & School president Aarthi Ramalingam at kennedyhands@gmail.com or at (630) 800 5997, if you are interested in volunteering for these positions or if you need more information.

     

    Also, don’t forget about our next Home and School meeting on Tuesday, January 24th, from 9:00-10:00 a.m. in the LRC.  All Kennedy parents are invited.

     

    Intramurals

    Intramural are ongoing throughout the school year.  For times and calendars for these events, please visit this link.

     

    District News

     

    Summer School

    Summer School registration will open on January 11th, 2017.  The purpose of Summer Learning is to maximize the opportunity to advance every child’s learning.  District 203 offers Summer School programs for elementary, junior high and high school students. 

     

    Programs at the Elementary and Junior High will be delivered in two- 3 week sessions.  Families have the option of signing up for one or both sessions.  A six week summer learning experience is recommended to prevent summer learning loss.   This year, the Junior High summer site has been moved to Madison. 

     

    For detailed course information, please visit the district website at http://www.naperville203.org/domain/1054.  Registration for all summer programs will take place through the Infinite Campus portal. Details on how to register was sent out via Talk203 and posted on the district summer website. 

    High School Course Registration

    Important Dates and Information for 8th Graders and their Families from High School Student Services

     

    January 10th or 11th, 2017 – High School Course Selection Worksheets will be distributed to all 8th graders.  Current teachers will have initialed recommendations for placement into high school classes.  Students will be instructed to take the worksheet home and sit with a parent or guardian to discuss courses for high school.

     

    Between January 10th and 27th, 2017 – Students must enter their course requests into the student portal of Infinite Campus.   It is likely that students or families will have questions.  We encourage you to attend the Freshman Family Orientation program to ask questions directly to high school teachers. 

     

    January 11th, 2017 – Freshman Family Orientation Program (7:00pm – NCHS Main Gym) - This program will provide families with more information on the elective options open to freshmen.  Students will also have the opportunity to learn more about NCHS Activities and Athletic Programs.    NCHS Instructional Coordinators and department representatives will be available from every academic department.  It is strongly recommended that students and parents attend this dynamic evening.  (Due to the limited parking, families are encouraged to arrive early or car pool.)

     

    AFTER ENTERING COURSES INTO INFINITE CAMPUS - Students should print a copy of their course requests and turn in the copy to Mrs. Smith, 8th grade counselor, as proof of completing this activity.

     

    High School Counselors will return to Kennedy on February 3rd to meet individually with each 8th grader to review and finalize course selections. 

     

    Once the High School Counselor verifies and “finalizes” the courses, students will no longer be able to change what is in the Portal.  

     

    Community News

    Student Writing Contest from Barnes and Noble

    The My Favorite Teacher program provides middle and high school students with the opportunity to tell their communities how much they appreciate their teachers by writing essays, poems or thank you letters that share how their teacher has influenced their life and why they appreciate and admire their teacher. 

     

    Participating schools collect the essays and submit them to the Naperville Barnes & Noble store for consideration.  Entries will be judged on the compelling nature of the teacher’s qualities, the sincerity of the student’s appreciation and the quality of expression and writing. 

     

    The local winning teacher will be recognized at an event at the Naperville Barnes & Noble where they will receive a special award acknowledging their achievement and additional recognition and praise from their community. The student who wrote the winning essays or poems will receive a certificate of recognition and will be honored at the Naperville store during a ceremony for the winning teacher. 

     

    The winning teacher from Naperville will be entered into the regional contest.  The overall regional winner named Barnes & Noble National Teacher of the Year will receive $5,000 and be recognized at a special event at a Barnes & Noble store. The winning teacher’s school will receive $5,000 as well.

     

    Only middle and high school students and active teachers employed in elementary, middle or high schools in the United States are eligible to win.  For more information please visit www.bn.com/myfavoriteteacher .  The deadline is March 1st, 2017.

     

    Repeated News

    5 Essentials Survey

    The 5 Essentials Survey measures how well our schools are organized for improvement. This state-wide survey provides detailed feedback to our schools and the results are published on the State Report Card for each school. This survey will be given to the staff at each school, to the students in grades 6-12, and will be available until January 30th, 2017, for parents to participate.

     

    To take the survey, go to https://survey.5-essentials.org/Illinois/ and find Kennedy. The survey should take about 10 minutes and is provided in both English and Spanish.

     

    If you have not done so, please take this opportunity to provide feedback on this survey.  I hope to hear from as many families as possible.  Thank you.

     

     

    Brian Valek

    Principal

    Kennedy Junior High School

    bvalek@naperville203.org

     

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Strategic Blueprint

  • District 203’s FOCUS 2020 Strategic Blueprint

    Posted by Superintendent Dan Bridges at 6/27/2014
    FOCUS 2020 is the strategic plan for comprehensive improvement between 2014 and 2020, designed in response to community feedback, best practice, and a vision for the future. Ultimately, this blueprint will advance the fulfillment of the district’s mission.
     
    FOCUS 2020’s foundation is the Future Focus Community Engagement process that occurred over the course of a year where hundreds of members from across the community provided feedback to the district leadership regarding areas such as facilities, finances, measuring student success, and programs of study. Learn more about Future Focus by clicking on the specific “Quick Link” to the left of this text.
     
    The Blueprint includes four “Strategic Focus” areas, namely to:
    1. Design and implement effective practices that promote learning experiences for all.
    2. Foster a high-performance culture focused on student learning.
    3. Steward resources effectively to promote student learning.
    4. Effective communication and community relations.
    Each Strategic Focus then establishes “Commitments.” These commitments are what the district leadership pledges to accomplish within a distinct timeframe. Each commitment then includes a detailed “Action Plan” which will be accessible by the public upon final draft.
     
    District administrators provided an update on Blueprint Commitments to the Board of Education at the July 27, 2015 meeting.  To watch that presentation, please click here
     
    Click here for a summary version of the 4 areas of focus of the Strategic Blueprint.
    Click here for a Spanish summary version of the 4 areas of focus of the Strategic Blueprint.
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