August 13, 2020
Dear Parents of Channahon 7th & 8th Grade Students,
After a busy summer of planning for the arrival of our students, I am excited to officially begin the 2020-2021 school year. I am eager to welcome our students both in person and online to this uncommon year, knowing they will bring the necessary energy and flexibility to succeed like only junior high students can! I have attached some back-to-school information you might find helpful. I look forward to seeing everyone very soon!
As mentioned in an earlier letter, limiting student movement and contact with others is one of the Illinois/District 17 safety priorities this year. For this reason, students will be assigned to a homeroom for their daily classes. With limited exceptions (P.E., lunch, and possibly an isolated class or two), this will be their classroom for the school day. There are six home rooms in each grade level. I understand that this will be disappointing to many of our students who enjoy the movement between classes and seeing other friends. It is one of the things that makes secondary school special. If and when Illinois lifts restrictions on movement we intend to go back to a traditional junior high structure where students move to their classes.
How to Access Student Schedules
There are a lot of factors that go into creating schedules for our students. These multiple considerations mean that schedules will not be changed. Schedules can only be viewed electronically from home through our student management software (PowerSchool) beginning at 11:00 a.m. tomorrow (Friday, August 14th). Some families may have a Powerschool account (especially those who have had older children go through our district) and some may not. The steps to access your Powerschool account, or set up a brand new one, are as follows:
Daily Bell Schedule & Lunch
The teachers will explain this daily bell schedule to our students on the first day of school. I share it in case you are helping your child figure out their routine at home. We will have 20-minute lunch periods (same amount of eating time as in the past), six rotations of lunch, socially distanced in the cafeteria. The students will be told which home room they are in on the first day of school. We will still serve hot lunch, or students may still bring a cold lunch to school.
7th Grade Bell Schedule
2:05 Dismissal Schedule
8th Grade Bell Schedule
2:05 Dismissal Schedule
5th + FLEX
5th + LUNCH
6th + LUNCH
FLEX + 6th
7th Grade Lunch Rotations:
8th Grade Lunch Rotations:
7 4 & 5
8 2 & 5
7 1 & 3
8 1 & 4
7 2 & 6
8 3 & 6
For our students who chose e-learning, please know that it will be very different from what you experienced in the spring. It will be a full day, and start earlier than last spring. E-learning students will start school at the exact same time as the in-person students (7:55 a.m you will need to be in your 1st hour virtual class for announcements and attendance). A normal school day will end at 2:05 p.m. for all students. E-learning students will follow your schedule virtually using Google Meet links that your teachers will send to you daily. Many of your classes, if not all, will be required to be viewed live, from the beginning of the class period to the end. Just like in-person students, e-learning students will be required to do any end-of-day homework. It is going to be the same academically rigorous Channahon Junior High School day. Note: E-learner homerooms and schedules are subject to change should the school eventually 1) go back to 100% in-person instruction or 2) go to 100% e-learning. This would need to be done to balance out the sections.
E-Learner Supply Pick-up (only applies to e-learners)
All school-provided supplies needed to start the school year will be available for e-learner pick-up on Tuesday, August 18th from 3:00 p.m. until 5:00 p.m. in the main junior high foyer. This will include needed supplies such as textbooks/workbooks and chromebooks (chromebooks would be for new e-learning students who just moved to our district since returning students should still have their chromebook). In-person learners will receive their supplies on the first day of school.
E-Learner Daily Structure & Supports
One thing we learned from e-learning last spring is that it is vital for each e-learning student to have a learning space in the house set up for daily school success. This space should be conducive to learning with good lighting, upright seating, a desk (or table) and a room location free from distractions. Just like in-person school, full daily attendance is required. Please contact the school should you need any help in designing your e-learning space and setting up the daily learning expectations.
E-learning vs. In-person Deadline has Passed
We have been able to confirm from all parents their intention for whether their child would e-learn or be in-person for first trimester 2020. Thank you for your prompt responses during a time that I’m certain was very busy for you too. The families I heard from were very pleased that our district offered both options. Please be advised that our District 17 deadline has passed to make any changes with the learning delivery method. My understanding is that if a parent wishes to not send their child in-person from this point forward they would be required to homeschool for first trimester. This is because of the planning that goes into providing staffing for both delivery methods. Thank you for understanding.
Students will have a daily P.E. class (mandated by the state of Illinois). We will be attempting more outdoor P.E. than in a typical school year. One benefit of this is that masks can be removed if a class is doing a socially-distanced outdoor activity. We are not dressing in PE uniforms at the start of the year. Students should wear clothes to school that can also be worn outside for P.E. class. They should also have socks and shoes each day for P.E. class.
First Day of School
The first day of school for students will be Wednesday, August 19th. The doors open at 7:45 a.m. Students should go straight to their first hour classroom each day (we will let them go to their locker later in the morning). The school day will begin at 7:55 a.m. and dismissal will be at 10:55 a.m.
Entering School Each Day
Doors open at 7:45 a.m. each day of school, and class begins at 7:55 a.m. Car riders are to be dropped off at the southeast door (pull up all the way to the very back of the lot, closest to the southeast door), which is available from 7:45-8:00 a.m. each morning. Car riders who arrive after 8:00 a.m., should be dropped off at the main entrance. Bike riders and bus riders will enter the main door each morning. Students who walk to school each day may enter whichever door is most convenient (southeast or main entrance). Students should walk straight to their classroom. We will let each homeroom know when their staggered locker times will be each morning.
Virtual Meet the Teachers Night
Meet the Teachers Night for all 7th & 8th grade parents will be virtual this year (pre-recorded messages). This will be emailed on Wednesday, August 19th. We will send you links to each teacher’s welcome. Your child should know all of their teacher names, or you can access Powerschool to view your child’s schedule (instructions above to access Powerschool).
Sports/Activities Schedules & Directions
Latest Sports Information from Mr. Homerding:
Directions to other schools:
The supply list link can be found below this message (please disregard the part about buying PE uniforms). For those that ordered school supplies from the Channahon PTO and did not pick them up yet, they are available at the office. We keep our school supply list streamlined, updated and only ask for needed materials.
Extra-Curricular Activities for 2020
There are many extra-curricular activities for students to be involved in during Junior High School. We will update you on these activities as the year progresses. Those activities are listed below:
Choir & Band Informational Letter From Mr. Becker & Mr. Del Rosario
Dear CSD17 Band/Choir Parents & Students,
We hope this letter finds you well as you enjoy the rest of your summer. This letter provides information as to how, at this point, we foresee the Band and Choir practices functioning as we start the 2020-2021 school year. Due to the Covid-19 guidelines no regular full rehearsals will be allowed, only small group practices will meet. Discussed below are the safety guidelines, meeting schedule, and focus of instruction.
Safety Guidelines: We will adhere with the ISBE recommendations regarding safety protocols for all band and choir activities. A complete explanation can be found at the above link but the main items are:
Meeting Schedule: The plan for Choir small groups is to meet after school on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday from 2:10-3:15. A weekly alternating schedule will be utilized between the Jr. High and Three Rivers, meaning that Mr. Del Rosario will meet with CJHS students on the above three days at the Jr. High one week, then the next week on the above three days with the TRS students at Three Rivers. During the “off” week that a building does not meet, Mr. Del Rosario may assign work in Google Classroom.
The plan for Band small groups will be to utilize sectionals out of PE for both the Jr. High and Three Rivers as in the past and also use the Flex period at the Jr. High. If needed, the band will also use the after school schedule described above. If this is the case, Mr. Becker and Mr. Del Rosario will use a flip flopped schedule so as not to be in the same building for the after school practices.
Focus of Instruction: A high-quality experience of music education is very important, and will be the focus as we plan for this school year. The development of musicianship and technique for each individual student through playing/singing in small groups will be the focus. A mix of both in-person and E-Learning will be provided when appropriate. Students who choose to participate entirely through E-Learning will be provided activities in Google Classroom.
Mr. Becker & Mr. Del Rosario
Choir Website for 2020
Mr. Del Rosario has put together an informational Choir Webpage (see link below). On the website there is information for students wishing to audition for the Fall Musical.
Thank you for your patience this summer in receiving information about school. It was our hope to keep you updated and informed without being overwhelming as our plans unfolded. I look forward to the start of school, and to seeing our students, whether in-person or remotely, on August 19th. Should you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org or (815) 521-3074.
Dr. Chad Uphoff