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March 20 COVID-19 Update to D219 Families 3.20.20 11:30a.m.

March 23 to 27 Is Spring Break
D219 will observe our scheduled Spring Break from Monday, March 23 through Friday, March 27. These days are non-attendance days in our regular school calendar, and e-Learning will NOT take place during this week. E-Learning will resume on Monday, March 30. 

School closure likely to continue
Currently, the plan is to reopen schools on Tuesday, March 31. However, we know there is a likely chance that this closure will be extended by the state and Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE), or by local decision. D219 is in ongoing communication with the Skokie Health Department, the Illinois Department of Public Health, ISBE and the other area superintendents. ISBE has given a strong indication that the state closure will extend beyond March 31 and has asked districts to be prepared to implement e-Learning.  We will keep you posted and share information about any closure extension as soon as we know. 

D219, Quest makes lunch available for students during Spring Break
Although D219 does not usually offer any food service during Spring Break, in recognition of challenges our families are facing with the spread of coronavirus, D219 and Quest Food Management Services, our onsite food service provider, will be offering free lunches to students. We will provide two distributions: 

Monday, March 23, 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.
– Niles North Pickup at Door 12 (Athletics entrance)
– Niles West Pickup at Door 13 (South Lobby)

Wednesday, March 25, 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. 
– Niles North Pickup at Door 12 (Athletics entrance)
– Niles West Pickup at Door 13 (South Lobby)

At each distribution, D219 and Quest will provide two or three days’ worth of meals including: cold entrees (such as sandwiches and wraps), cold sides (such as pasta salad, cole slaw, bagged chips), fruit and beverages. 

Distribution will take place outside the school building (reference the door number above) to ensure the safety and sanitation of the building during this shutdown. Students or their families may simply approach or drive up to the distribution point, and quickly pick up the meals. 

Niles Township Food Pantry offers food for eligible families 
The Niles Township Food Pantry will be making boxes of food available for families who live in the township and who have children who qualify for free or reduced-price lunches. Eligible families can pick up a box during one of the following times:

Wednesday, March 25, 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.
at the pantry’s Pop-Up Location, 8300 Lehigh Avenue in Morton Grove

Wednesday, March 25, 5:30 to 7 p.m.
at the Niles Township Food Pantry location, right behind the Niles Township Government building, 5255 N. Lincoln Avenue in Skokie

The food boxes will include a week’s worth of groceries. They include such items as: peanut butter, trail mix, canned chicken, tomato soup, canned vegetables, canned beans or vegetarian chili, spaghetti sauce, pasta, dried fruit, dried beans, brown rice, juice, water, crackers and cereal bars. 

For more information, visit the Niles Township Government website

Social Distancing
We remind families that, with our school facilities closed, students should not be on school grounds. This includes outdoor field spaces.  Everybody should be observing Centers for Disease Control COVID-19 guidelines, which include staying at least 6 feet away from others and refraining from gathering in groups. This also means avoiding picnics, pick-up games and other social gatherings. Finally, and most importantly, if you are not feeling well, please stay home until you have fully recovered.

This flyer provides an excellent summary of how to practice effective social distancing. The source of this flyer is the Illinois Association of School Administrators (IASA).

Technical support for students 
For those students who have requested wifi hotspots, our Information Technology staff members will be contacting students directly to arrange a time to pick up those devices once they come in.

The week after Spring Break, we will resume Technical Support Hours for students who need help with a faulty Chromebook or who need other support for e-Learning. These support hours are scheduled to take place on Tuesdays from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. We ask students to sign up for a specific time to come in. Please check this site for an update next week, when we will include a link that students can use to arrange a specific appointment for tech support. 

Be well and stay safe!

Dr. Steven Isoye
Superintendent of Schools