Immanuel Lutheran School NewsFind out what's new at ILS
School administrators like to work under the premise of research-based practices. When we select curriculum, or plan instruction and assessment, we look at the research that supports our selections and actions. Opening up the schools in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic was based on recommendations from different public sources; their recommendations were a result of scientific research coupled with collaboration between organizations. At Immanuel Lutheran School, we followed and continue to follow the recommendations of the Illinois Public Department of Health, the Illinois State Board of Education, and the Center for Disease Control. Additionally, since April, our administrators collaborated with other leaders from the Northern Illinois District of the Lutheran Church Missouri Synod.
Although we have opened our doors under guidelines, until recently there obviously has not been research around schools that have opened. At the end of August, initial research has been shared by Education Week (Sparks, 2020). Two large studies in the UK and Australia affirmed the need for strict and comprehensive processes. Schools that opened either full-time, or part-time-in-person with less rigorous routines, showed peaks of the virus within a few months. The two schools studied aligned with a broader study; findings included rapid community testing, tracing and quarantine requirement are needed to safely reopen activities after the shutdown orders in the spring of 2020.
With this in mind, we will continue to be strict with our procedures of mask wearing, physical distancing, taking temperatures of all who enter our building, hand hygiene, tracing, and following of the IDPH COVID-19 EXCLUSION GUIDANCE flowchart.
Dr. Joy Mullaney
Sparks, S.D. (2020, August, 26). What should superintendents do when kids and teachers start getting sick? Education Week, 40(2), 9.
Many thanks to Immanuel parent, Alan Marshall, who created the ONE SHOT AT FOREVER video! The Bobcats have begun their 2020 Cross Country season, and the team has room for students in grades 3-8. If your child is interested in joining the team practices are held from 2:15-3:45 p.m. on Mondays and Thursdays for grades 3 & 4 and on Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays, Fridays for grades 5-8. Paperwork and fees should be turned in to Mrs. Henderson; forms may also be emailed to her at firstname.lastname@example.org. Students should remember to bring masks, running shoes, water bottles, and running gear.
May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in Him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit (Romans 15:13, NIV). The book of Romans encompasses a letter sent by Paul to the Christians in Rome, the capital city of the great Roman Empire. When Paul wrote this letter, he had never visited Rome, but he intended to someday. Paul explained that we are saved by faith in Jesus alone. Because we have been saved, we will live our lives to honor God. In chapter 15, Paul reminded us that we are to lift each other up; God provides us endurance and encouragement to give us a spirit of unity amongst us. As the Immanuel Lutheran School, Palatine community, we are to unite and lift each other up with love, prayer, service, and community.
The Romans 15:13 verse was carefully selected by our 2019-2020 7th grade students as our theme verse for the school year. As we join together at ILS with our current families, and as we embrace our newest families, I welcome you all in the name of the Lord. As Paul introduced in his letter to the Romans, “Grace and peace to you from God our Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ” (Romans 1:7, NIV).
What a great way to start the year…with hope, joy, peace, trust, and power of the Holy Spirit. In this fearful time of COVID, and as we bravely move forward, we acknowledge that this school year will be different; we are currently in Phase 4. Our large summer crew, under the direction of Immanuel’s Board of Directors, cleaned thoroughly and with intensity both the school and the church, not missing a beat! The school office has proactively ordered gallons of hand sanitizer, thermometers for all teachers and staff, hundreds of masks for children and adults who may have forgotten theirs, and over a thousand gloves for teachers to clean between classes. Thank you to all who contributed to the extensive preparation required to begin this unique academic year.
During the school year, we will be cleaning constantly; our properties group, teachers, custodial staff, church and school staff have multiple and regular strategies for cleaning the building and maintaining air quality. Physical distancing and hygiene will be emphasized and practiced starting today! Masks and mask breaks will be a best practice at ILS. All who enter will be expected to take temperature checks and answer two questions regarding COVID. Teachers will be taking temperature checks at lunchtime, as well. Know that we are prepared to move back into Phase 3 and remote learning if mandated. Students in K-8 will have 1:1 devices with early training in the Seesaw platform for K-4 and the G-suite for 5-8. Teachers in EC through Grade 8 have worked this summer on self-directed and school-directed professional development on these platforms. Each of our departments - Early Childhood, Kindergarten, Elementary, and Middle School - are refining remote learning plans which will be released in THE R PLAN.
Join us in welcoming our newest teachers. Ms. Anna Wozniak will be serving as ILS Grades 5-8 science teacher, and Ms. Kristy Heimsoth will serve as our Late Start Kindergarten teacher; with an endorsement in special education Kristy will also direct special services for ILS. Mrs. Brier Nelson will serve as our Grade 8 teacher assistant; with eighth grade enrollment of over 30, Brier will assist middle school teachers, as we split the Grade 8 class. Brier has served ILS as a very capable substitute teacher. Let’s welcome Ashley Proksa, as she will assist in Grade 8 physical education. Additionally, Ashley will assist Mr. Joel Moritz in the delivery of after school care (ESS). Ashley has experience as a leader in camp counseling, exercise science, and other youth programs.
Immanuel welcomes all of you to the 2020-2021 academic year. We will continue to pray for all of our families, teachers, and staff as we launch the school year. I lift you up in prayer, as well. God’s blessing to all of us as we move forward.
Principal Joy Mullaney, PhD
Immanuel Lutheran School 8th Grade Graduation was held on Sunday, August 9, 2020. Twenty-four students officially graduate in a delayed ceremony due to the COVID pandemic. Because of the social distancing guidelines, only the graduates and their parents were allowed in the sanctuary.
We congratulate all the graduates and wish them God’s blessings as they prepare to enter high school!
Enjoy this video from our Graduation Banquet on August 4th.
As our society navigates through the uncharted waters known as life with Covid-19, Lutheran Schools are not immune to the challenges of the pandemic. Lutheran Schools offer excellence in many areas, not the least of which is the area of interscholastic athletic competition.
Athletics are not immune to the adaptations that have affected all areas of life. With that in mind, the NID Mission Facilitator for Education, Lois Stewart, along with a large number of principals and athletic directors from NID Lutheran schools have met regularly via Zoom since early June discussing and evaluating the effect this pandemic might have on our interscholastic athletic programs. The decision was made that it would be best to follow IHSA guidelines as closely as possible and to that end, the following statement reflects the position of NID Lutheran Schools.
At this time, The Lutheran Schools of the Northern Illinois District of the Lutheran Church, Missouri Synod will follow the plan set forth by the Illinois High School Association. This means that those schools who participate in Cross Country will offer the sport as an interscholastic activity in the fall of 2020. Meetings will be held to determine the safest way to conduct these cross country events, and more information will be available as guidelines are determined.
This also means that interscholastic volleyball and soccer seasons will be postponed until February as is written in the IHSA plan (soccer will be dependent upon field readiness and playability), and barring any change in IHSA policy, will be offered interscholastically at that time.
As is true with everything during this time, plans are fluid and subject to change. As Christian institutions made up of Christian people, we are charged with respecting and following the mandates of those in authority over us as Martin Luther clearly tells us in his explanation of the 4th commandment. We are God’s people and we walk in His light. We also recognize that the health and safety of our athletes, coaches, and all that would be involved in athletic competition be of highest priority.
May God continue to bless the ministries of our Lutheran Schools, and may we always strive to be the best we can be through the power of the Holy Spirit.
We Welcome You To Immanuel With Open Arms!
New to Immanuel this year are Dr. Joy Mullaney as Principal and Ms. Kristy Heimsoth as Kindergarten teacher and Special Education Coordinator, who were installed at our worship service on July 26. We also wish to welcome our ILS alumna, Ms. Anna Wozniak, who will be teaching middle-school science.
From Assistant Principal of Curriculum, Instruction, Assessment:
Due to the school library being cleaned, the open library time scheduled for next Wednesday, July 22 is being postponed to the following Wednesday, July 29. If you would like to come and check out books one last time this summer, please schedule an appointment with Mrs. Crimmins at email@example.com. The library will be open from 10-12 on Wed., July 29th.
Thanks to Bill Mayyou’s leadership and for all of his work with the properties committee; gratitude to Bill’s crew for taking seriously their role as team players. See the deep cleaning plan below. Know that the safety of our students, faculty and staff is of utmost priority.
Dr. Joy Mullaney
We plan to open… it will look different, but we will open!
Pending any state restrictions, we are boldly moving forward with our planning!
We are committed to making it work! Of course, there is much anticipation regarding the opening of school in August! Here at Immanuel we continue to be blessed, and God continues to provide. Our school is backed by a generous church family with a focus on the school. Knowing full well that school will be different this fall, much planning has gone on behind the scenes. Following our church board of directors’ meeting, we have the “go ahead” to move forward with our planning. These are important points for you to know:
Technology: We are providing 1:1 devices for our teachers and students grades K-8. This means that each student, grades Kinder-8 will be assigned a device. Kinder-4 will be assigned iPads for their use at school. There will be times where for special projects, students will be expected to take them home. Grades 6-8 already have Chromebooks assigned to them. Grade 5 will be on the Chromebook plan starting in August. New devices have been ordered.
With more devices to manage, our technology leader will be allotted extra time during the school day to support teachers and students.
- The platform for PK–4 will be Seesaw, and for Grades 5–8, Google Suite
- All teachers will participate in professional development to learn the Google Suite.
- Additionally, Early Childhood–Grade 4 will participate in training for Seesaw
- Parents will be asked to attend informational meetings to learn Seesaw, Google Suite, and Sycamore, as appropriate.
- Students will learn their appropriate platforms in their classrooms.
We have full intention to be open as scheduled: Steps are being taken to open a safe environment. Details will follow.
August 9 @ 3:00 Grade 8 (future freshmen) Graduation at Immanuel Church
August 10 – 14 Home visits for early childhood, and early elementary, teacher professional development
August 17 School opens for Grades 1 – 8
August 18 School opens for Kinder
August 24-September 15 Varied start dates for Early Childhood
- A deep cleaning plan is in the works; details of cleaning will be featured in a future E-blasts.
- We are limiting the numbers of students in each classroom.
- We are reassigning, and redesigning classrooms based on small class sizes
- We are being proactive about bus service within Palatine.
- Lunch will be provided, but different.
- New thermometers have been delivered. Temperatures will be taken at the start of school, as well as lunchtime. Each area has been assigned their own no-touch thermometer.
- All will wear masks. Hundreds of disposable masks have been delivered just in case students forget on occasion.
- Gallons of hand sanitizer have been delivered!
- After school care (ESS) will continue to be provided but will be more spread out.
- Physical education will have limited students per area and cleaning between classes will take place. Locker rooms will not be used.
Remote learning? Yes, we are planning the details of remote learning. If we face a mandated remote learning period of time, we will be ready with a formulated schedule, updated devices, support plans for students, communications to parents, as well as systemic and standardized lesson planning. This should streamline expectations for at home learning.
As we continue to refine our plans to open, I will be communicating the roll out strategies for reopening. If you haven’t already, please sign up for one of my Café 941 meetings, and we can chat more about our work through Zoom.
Blessings to you and your family. On behalf of the teachers/pastors/staff, the Board of Christian Education, the church Board of Directors, we look forward to being with you as a school community this August.
Dr. Joy Mullaney
As we finish up our 2019-2020 academic year remotely, let’s praise the Holy Spirit for guiding us as we navigated together through weeks of what I call the three R’s. Relational, Reciprocal, Remote (RRR) has been our vehicle for student learning lately. Parents, teachers, administrators, office staff, pastors, and students have stretched during these remote weeks. Thanks to those who have been gifted as tech savvy individuals, for loving and directing the rest of us!! I’m impressed; parents have set up home classrooms, and teachers are working at home tirelessly! Remote chapels were amazing. Praises! Have you ever seen a teacher’s refrigerator turn into a whiteboard? Clever! We now know some of your pets! Fun!
As we move forward in the planning of the Fall 2020 school opening, it is important for our constituents to understand that our remote learning (RRR) plan will be revised and intentional; we have already begun working with our consultant, Educational Technology Professor Dr. Alan McCloud from Aurora University. We have formed our RRR planning team who will work through the summer to update and standardize our current RRR Plan; Mrs. Crimmins, Mrs. Sandusky, Mrs. Tres, Mrs. Rathe, and I have committed to work as the RRR Team this summer with Dr. McCloud. Additionally, I have dedicated teacher professional development days devoted to RRR training.
It is also important to plan options. Plan A is to open our school as a “normal” or close to normal face to face school; Plan A is now in place. What about Plan B? Plan C? We don’t know what the state of Illinois will look like in the fall, nor can we predict future restrictions of Governor Pritzker. However, this is a fact; ILS is committed to providing high quality, safe, and relational education in the context of the Christian faith. This may very well look totally different than any other time in history, thus Plans B and C. I have been studying options from other schools, both public and private. I regularly have been meeting with our LCMS Northern Illinois District’s Northwest Regional Principal’s group and have kept up with the Illinois State Board of Education recommendations. These are some models that we are studying at ILS and will be presenting to parents for input:
• Delayed school opening
• Alternative school day schedule
• Staggered start times
• Targeted curriculum
• Block scheduling
• Partial openings
• Scheduled in-school days for students needing extra help
• Teachers looping with their classes
• Students start school with their current teachers, and transition to their new grade level at a determined date.
• Team teaching
• Am/pm schedules
• Hybrid-Flexible (HyFlex) models, tailored to grade level needs
• Child care
Parents, look forward to more information coming your way!
School has changed, society too! But God the Father has not!
James 1:17 New International Version (NIV)
Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.
Dear Immanuel, Lutheran School teachers, staff, students, parents, and church congregation:
As your incoming principal, it is important that I make myself available right away and assure you that transitioning has been happening! Although my designated start date is Monday, April 6, School Board President Marcia, Pastor Warren, Principal Delaine, and Jan have been instrumental in the transition of leadership through ongoing communication. Their wisdom is much appreciated; because of their professionalism, I am in the know of how Immanuel’s teachers, students, and parents are interacting, especially through the last several weeks of e-learning. I attended Wednesday’s faculty meeting, and I continue to have a strong confidence in the remote learning process, due to the massive efforts of our teachers!
We have heard the word “essential” repeatedly in the news of late. Essential workers, essential needs, essential stores are some examples. In the world of teaching and learning, educators often attach words to describe what is absolutely necessary for students, such as essential standards, essential questions, essential learning, and essential learning outcomes. Let me add that our teachers are in fact essential and critical to the learning process, as they make decisions and plans to deliver and facilitate instruction to our students. Immanuel teachers, along with teachers across the world, have recently self-directed their professional development, adding many different skills as they work harder than ever fine tuning our new world of mandated remote learning.
A few years ago, remote learning started in Illinois as e-learning snow days. After piloting e-learning and finding success, Illinois created guidelines and rules for this initiative. Many Illinois schools and districts dabbled in remote learning and were in the process of planning how it would look in their schools.Typically, this type of initiative for a school would take at least a couple of years. Who would have thought, remote learning would be in full force… ready or not!
So here we are… smack in the face of distance learning! I will tell you that our teachers at Immanuel have been working harder than ever as they hone their remote classroom routines; we will continue to adjust facilitation and communication strategies. We cannot forget our partnership with parents; parents, thank you for your efforts and actions to make remote learning work for your children! As always, Immanuel is here for you. Don’t let any question go unasked.
Remember, administrators are also on a learning curve! As your incoming principal, I will work with the school team moving forward to continue the good work that Principal Delaine has initiated! In addition to the Illinois State Board of Education, accreditation and recognition entities will be looking for evidence and documentation of solid remote teaching and learning. As a best practice, I plan to engage with our teachers on this management task as we customize the e-learning program for Immanuel.
I so look forward to meeting all of you… at this time, I wish it could be face-to-face and in person, but until then, let’s chat informally through (virtual) Café 941. Make yourself a latte and let’s get to know each other in our newly developed Café space! Look for details to come.
Dr. Joy Mullaney
Immanuel Lutheran School, Palatine, IL