Dear Burbank 111 Families,
This past school year was unique to say the least. I would like to thank our students, families, and staff for their support and flexibility in an everchanging environment. The year went well, but we can all agree that in-person instruction is best for students and educators.
In June, we finalized our 2021-22 School Year Plan, which includes in-person instruction for all students for full days five days a week. The plan also includes mitigation measures such as requiring masks, social distancing, sanitizing, and quarantining. An open forum for families was held on June 21 and the plan was approved by the Board of Education on June 23. Several weeks later, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) released updated guidance for K-12 schools, which was ultimately adopted by the Illinois Department of Public Health. The CDC recognizes the fundamental importance of in-person learning for the well-being of students, families, and communities. In short, two major updates include requiring masks for individuals who are not fully vaccinated and recommending at least three feet of physical distance between students within classrooms.
We will continue to review guidance as it comes from the CDC, IDPH, and the Illinois State Board of Education, as well as our local health department Stickney Township Public Health District. Although we want everything to return to normal pre-pandemic times, we must recognize that COVID-19 is still a factor and we will endeavor to provide a safe learning environment for all while we continue to monitor the situation in our area. We will continue to keep our families informed via School Messenger, the district website, and social media.
Social Emotional Learning (SEL) is the process of developing the self-control, self-awareness, and social skills necessary to be successful in school, relationships, and life. Burbank School District made a commitment to the safety, well-being, and success of all of our students. As part of that commitment, we are using the Second Step social emotional curriculum to develop our students’ SEL capabilities. As we return to school, we realize some of our students have been outside the classroom setting for 15 months. Some of our youngest students have never been inside a classroom at all. Our commitment is to check in with students often and provide support as students transition back into a school setting. Second Step lessons and discussions are just one of the ways Burbank School District will continue to encourage the growth of our students academically, physically, and socially.
The start of school is quickly approaching and I am looking forward to another productive year for District 111. Mark your calendars for Back to School Night, which will be held August 23 from 6:00 to 7:30 pm for all elementary schools. Liberty Junior High will host their Back to School Night on August 24 from 6:00 to 7:30 pm. We hope to see you there!
In closing, I would like to invite our families to join us at the Back to School Rally on August 28 at Burbank School. It’s a family friendly event and a great way to celebrate the new school year. As always, great things are happening in District 111!
Dr. Franzy Fleck