DISTRICT 64 UPDATES ON CORONAVIRUS

As we all continue to take necessary precautions to stay healthy during the COVID-19 outbreak, District 64 will continue to honor its mission to inspire every child to discover, learn, achieve, and care.

The worldwide pandemic has forced us to change how we run the school district, but not our goals. Although schools are closed for now and events have been canceled, we remain committed to the students throughout our District 64 community. The first part of that commitment is to assure their health, safety and welfare.

We are following guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) and the Cook County Health Department (CCHD). We urge you to do the same, and contact your doctor if you have the identified symptoms.

For complete information on the recent changes in District 64, along with health guidelines and family resources, please read the following:

School closures: On Tuesday, March 31, Governor Pritzker extended his “Stay at Home” order for Illinois through Thursday, April 30, which means schools will also remain closed for on-site learning through April 30 as well.

What if school is canceled for the rest of the year?  We will adapt to whatever comes our way. District 64 will continue to make decisions that we believe are best for our students, teachers, and our community.

School playgrounds: Both the Mayor’s office and the Park Ridge Police Department report that they are expending resources to stop groups of adults and kids playing in parks. Please help stop group activities in our parks. Be aware of where your children are going if they leave your house, and help spread the word that social distancing is a proven method for reducing the spread of COVID-19. We need everyone working together in the best interests of the health of our community. When we do come back to school, our custodians will properly clean all the equipment before we open again.

Remote Learning (formerly E-Learning):  During this extended school closing we will continue with Remote Learning. The State has also provided each district with five Remote Planning Days to be built into the remaining school calendar. These are days where Remote Learning would not take place, and they would be used as staff development days for teachers to plan ahead, create lessons, and learn new tools. These days are reflected in the outline of dates below. Remote Learning is continuing to evolve, as we have more time to plan and adjust to this new form of teaching.

The schedule for April is included below:

  • April 1 - 3:            Remote Learning Days 
  • April 6 - 9:            Remote Learning Days
  • April 10:                School Holiday (No School)
  • April 13:                Remote Planning Day (No Remote Learning)
  • April 14 - 17:         Remote Learning Days
  • April 20 - 24:         Remote Learning Days
  • April 27:                Remote Planning Day (No Remote Learning)
  • April 28 - April 30: Remote Learning Days

New Learning Opportunities: During this extended school closure, District 64 will continue to provide learning opportunities and support for our students. One of our goals is for students to make personal connections with peers and teachers through various activities, which may include pre-recorded video or video conferencing using remote meeting platforms such as Zoom or Google Hangout Meets.

With any electronic platform, the use of a remote meeting platform creates potential privacy risks. Please note a prominent feature of remote meeting platforms is that participation may result in other individuals (e.g., parents, siblings) viewing students on these platforms. For this reason, we ask that parents limit their own and their family’s access to these platforms while a student is using the tool as much as possible. Further, the remote meeting platform may maintain, utilize or disclose student information for its own purposes in line with its terms of service, including product development or marketing purposes.

If you have any concerns regarding your child’s participation in remote meeting platforms or do not want your child to participate in this virtual resource, please contact your child’s principal.

Find free or temporarily free learning resources for teachers and parents to support student learning while Illinois’ schools are closed (from the Illinois State Board of Education). Information on finding low-cost internet connectivity for those who qualify is listed at the bottom of this page.

Student Grades: In alignment with ISBE’s recommendations, all assignments, assessments, and activities collected during Remote Learning Days will be graded using “Pass” or “Incomplete.”  Students will also receive a report card at the end of the school year with grades of “Pass” or “Incomplete.”   

Differentiation: It’s a hot word in education, and it basically means changing the curriculum, lesson, or activity for an individual or group of students in order for them to have a greater chance of learning or excelling at a topic. Differentiation takes on many forms, and is a key tool of the 21st century teacher.   

In the classroom, teachers are able to frequently assess students and modify activities for students in “real-time.” This is something that’s very difficult for a teacher to utilize during Remote Learning Days and even harder for a parent to manage at home. If your child is frustrated or needs a break, please adjust the scope of the assignment or shorten the amount of time your child engages in the activity. If you are unsure about what to prioritize, please reach out to your child’s teacher for guidance. Our teachers can also point you to resources for extending your child’s learning. 

Student Absences: Please continue to sign-in on your school’s attendance form each day that your child participates in e-learning. You do not need to notify the school if your child is unable to participate due to illness or other reason. 

Beyond the Bell: The Beyond the Bell (BTB) program will be closed until schools are open to classes. Due to the current COVID-19 situation, the Park Ridge Park District is postponing Beyond the Bell Before and After School registration for the 2020/2021 school year. The Park District will continue to monitor developing information, and remains hopeful that online registration for current enrolled families will begin on May 1st and families new to BTB on May 15th. Thank you for your patience as everyone navigates this rapidly evolving situation. Please visit the Park District website for District-wide updates.

Free lunch service: Also note that we have made arrangements for meal distribution during this time through a partnership with Maine Township High School District 207. Meals will be distributed between 9 a.m. and 11 a.m. on Tuesdays and Thursdays at Maine South High School, 1111 S. Dee Road, Park Ridge.

There is NO sign up form to participate. Any student or family in need of meals can arrive at Maine South High School and they will be provided with meals. Please go to door 3 located in the front circle driveway.

District 207 is also using Maine East, and Maine West high schools as distribution points for neighboring elementary school communities. 

Meals will be distributed in a “drive-through” and “walk-through” fashion. We ask that you stay in your car and the meals will be brought to your car. Please do not get out of your car. If you walk to school, please form a line outside and practice social distancing by keeping at least six feet between the others in line. The meals will be brought to you in your car or in the walker line.

Our Quest workers will be working at the D207 high school kitchens to help prepare meals for our families.  If you are unable to pick up your meals at one of the high school locations, please email or call Lindsey Borchers our onsite Food Service Director, lborchers@d64.org, 847-962-9957.

Closings/Cancellations:  All out-of-school activities involving students and parents have been canceled until further notice. This means field trips, sporting events, concerts, musicals, plays, clubs, PTO/PTA meetings and parent-teacher conferences are all cancelled.

Keeping kids healthy when school is closed: The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) offers tips on protecting children from getting sick.

COVID-19 GUIDELINES: We are also providing you with recommended guidelines to prevent the spread of the virus.

Traveling outside the country:  A few days ago, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) announced that students, family members or staff returning from mainland China and/or students, family members or staff who have travelled to or had stopovers in countries that are considered Level 3 or higher by the CDC should self-quarantine for 14 days. If you are in this situation, please contact the Cook County Department of Public Health (708) 633-4000 or 1-800-889-3931 to work through the details of self-quarantine and contact your child’s school health office to report the self-quarantine.

You may have also seen the President’s address regarding the restriction of flights from certain countries. This information is rapidly changing, so we encourage families to carefully consider their upcoming travel plans.

District 64 is asking all parents to share with the school district if you or your student has recently traveled out of the country or plans to travel out of the country prior to the end of the school year. Please click here to self report. This is being done out of an abundance of caution. However, in the event someone connected to the schools has a confirmed case of Coronavirus, it will be important to have this information on-hand to share with health officials.

Communications: This web page, dedicated to the Coronavirus, is found via a banner towards the top of the D64 home page. We also plan to continue to communicate to you regularly as long as the spread of the virus continues. Two things you can do to help:

  1. Please contact the school office if your contact information has changed recently so we know the best way to reach you.
  2. Please inform us if a student or family member is known to have been exposed to someone who has a confirmed case.

Should the situation here change, we will work directly with Cook County Department of Public Health (CCPDH), Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) and the Centers for Diseases Prevention (CDC) to take necessary steps to safeguard our schools.

In the meantime, we’re providing you with additional information about influenza, Coronavirus and how to prevent the spread of illness within the school setting on the Health and Safety Tips page of our website. Other important links are listed here:

Park Ridge Library: Does someone in your family need a library card? You can get free access to ebooks, audiobooks, digital magazines and newspapers from around the world, online databases on everything from cooking and crafting to live tutoring help with your card! Apply for a library card online. One of our team members will email you your library card number and pin so you can access online resources and your account right away. Remember to pickup your card and show proof of residency when the library reopens. For questions regarding your account including card expiration, resetting your pin on your account, renewals or overdue materials please email our Patron Services team at patronservices@prpl.org

FAMILY RESOURCES: Listed below are some resources for families to assist with food, clothing and other emergency needs. If any student or family member requires emergency mental health support, please dial 911.

Maine Township Food Pantry

Maine Stay Youth and Family Services

North/Northwest Suburbs Resource Directory

Entry Point

Chicago Community COVID-19 Response Fund

CEDA

Illinois Housing Authority

Free Internet: Families who qualify for low cost internet may apply for Internet Essentials from Comcast or Access from AT&T. Comcast is now providing two months of free service to new qualifying customers, as well as opening up the Xfinity WiFi service to the public. To connect to Xfinity WiFi look for the “xfinitywifi” network name when searching for a WiFi network on your device. Open a browser to finish making the connection.