Mark T. Skinner West School
Week 21 (2015-2016)
Week At A Glance
February 12th - February 19th

Skinner Banner 2011
Weekly Update 

Friday, Feb. 12th

Spirit Day- Comic Con Day

Monday, Feb. 15

No School 
Presidents' Day

Wednesday, Feb. 17

 Communications Committee Meeting

Friday, Feb. 19th

Gallery111 Art Show
5:00pm - 7:00pm 

Skinner West School Calendar

 CPS School Calendar 2015-2016
Put your child's name on the Skinner Marquee!

Looking for a unique Way to Say "Happy Birthday" to Your Child? Surprise your child with an electronic greeting on the Skinner West marquee for only $25.  

In addition, a birthday greeting will be sent to your child via the intercom during morning announcements . All proceeds will help our Skinner 8th graders go to Washington DC.
  • Complete the announcement request form -  click here 
  • Enclose $25 cash or check to Skinner West with the form
  • Turn the form into Room 320 or 326
  • All forms must be turned in at least one week prior to your requested date.
Your child's birthday announcement will run for 24 hours. If your child's birthday falls on a weekend, the announcement will run the Friday before.

Neighborhood News 
What's Happening in the West Loop?  Visit the 

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SUPPORT OUR SCHOOL and Share this with Family and Friends! 


Box Tops/ Labels for Education
Collect everyday labels from groceries to earn points and funds for our school library

e-Scrip (Retailers)
Visit to designate your eScrip accounts to Mark T. Skinner. A percentage of your purchases go to the school. However, you must renew your e-Scrip annually. Look out for special bonus days too!


1% goes to Skinner on ALL purchases made with Target Card (additional 5% all purchases for you!)
Designate Skinner Classical as your school






Please submit pictures from any Skinner West events (concerts, parties, presentations etc) to
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Thank you!




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 New Articles 
Special LSC Meeting - Friday, February 12th

There will be a special LSC meeting on Friday, Feb 12th at 6:00pm to discuss CPS mid year budget cuts for Skinner. Skinner must trim approximately  $213,000 from our  current budget. Hopefully, this reduction in funds will not result in losing any teachers or support staff. All parents are welcome to attend the meeting. The agenda can be found here.

Here are a few facts that you should know:

 1.  All schools are being asked to make midyear adjustments to their SBB budgets  to net a total  savings for the Board of $ 85 million. The savings of $ 85 million is coming from two SBB buckets  - one equaling $50 million and the other equaling $35 million.

   2.  From the first bucket of $ 50 million  -  every school's SBB funding rate is being reduced by $ 126 ( or 2.87% ) per student. From the second bucket of $ 35 million, every school will receive  another reduction of $88 (2%) per student.
   3. The impact of these cuts may be reduced because of a  roll out of an additional $ 41 million in Title I and Title II funding to the schools. 
   4. SGSA  carry over funds from FY 15 will be released to schools now.
   5. The deadline for submitting our adjusted budget is Tuesday, Feb 16th.
   6. Skinner's total SBB cuts = $213,973. 
   7. Skinner is receiving an additional $ 54,299 in Title II funds to offset the SBB cuts.  However, the Title II funds ( teacher quality grant)  have strict parameters for spending. We cannot purchase textbooks , supplies, equipment, or educational support personnel with these funds !
   8. We have approximately $ 106, 000 of unallocated SBB funds that we were holding on to as contingency for this dreaded anticipation of cuts. We must find the other $ 47,000 - $107,000 to cut  depending on how we can use the Title II funds.
   9. CPS has also suggested/ released to principals which funds are available on salary lines now to help balance the adjustments  rather than waiting until the end of the year " windfall " for spending. I will explain this  in greater detail at the LSC meeting on Friday.
Mark your calendars for Wednesday, March 2, 2016. We will be having Trivia Night as part of a fundraiser for this year's 8th grade trip to Washington, DC. See you there!


Network Champions

Skinner West Boys 5/6 and 7/8 team competed in the Network 6 championship on Saturday February 5, 2016 @JennerElementary. Both teams went up against South Loop Elementary who had 3 teams (7/8 Girls, 7/8 Boys, 5/6 Boys) that made it to the Network 6 championship game. 
5/6 Boys game started out with Skinner West jumping out to an early lead in the first few minutes. Great defense on the wings from Austin F., Romell F., and TJ S. led to quick steals and quick baskets. South Loop fought hard to stay in the game but early baskets from Niel D. made it tough. The team was anchored and led by Xavier A. who controlled the paint with defense and took care of business with some exciting scoring, including a over the head backwards layup from an inbound play. The subs from Skinner West continued to pour it on as Skinner cruised to a 15+ point victory.
7/8 Boys were meeting South Loop for the 3rd time this season with the record being 1 and 1. The two meetings before set the stage for what was sure to be a classic game. Skinner West came out strong on defense not allowing anything easy, forcing turnovers. The turnovers led to guard Isaiah Y. pushing the ball and finding open shooters Amari B. and Joshua A. for big time threes and layups. South Loop did not go away, after every Skinner run, South Loop sparked one of their own. Robert P., Josh H. and Phil S. dominated the boards for Skinner West, snatching every rebound only allowing South Loop one shot at the basket. In the second quarter one of the players from Skinner went down and made room for Khalil C. to come in and put his imprint on the game, diving for loose balls coming up with steals and continuing the first half success. The half ended with Skinner up by 7. In the second half it was a battle, both teams going back and forth, with a big push from the bench Skinner began to pull away. Just that quickly South Loop brought the game to within 3. With 2 minutes left shooting guard Cleveland H. received the pass on a break took 2 dribbles stepped into his shot and nailed a big shot that put Skinner up by 6. With another push from South Loop and Skinner up by 1, team captain Joshua H. stepped up and knocked down 2 free throws. The final score ended with Skinner pulling off the victory by 3.

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A great big shout out to the PTO/Forum for sponsoring our special guests from Ghana!

Bernard Woma and the Saakumu Dance Troupe worked with the 7th & 8th graders on percussion, singing and dance, gave two incredible performances at Whitney Young High School which were attended by the entire Skinner West student body, and then ended the day with a dance workshop for 6th graders. A wonderful time was had by all, and we can't wait for them to come back next year. Thank you very much, PTO/Forum!
Click here to view photos from the event.

Bilingual Advisory Committee

Save the dates: Two upcoming BAC happenings on 2/25 and 3/20!
Please join us for our next BAC meeting on 2/25/16. We will decorate our bulletin board on the first floor to showcase spring holiday celebrations from around the world. If your family celebrates a holiday in spring that you'd like to share with the school, please contact us so we can include it. All parents are welcome.
Also, please join us for our third installment of Around the World in 80 Dishes on 3/20/16 at Zaytune Mediterranean Grill in Bridgeport. All families and children are welcome. Click here to view event flyers.

Thanks for your continued support,
The Skinner West BAC    
Repeat Articles 

Principal Clark's Report
Local School Council Meeting
The Principal's Report is prepared monthly by Mrs. Deborah Clark, Mark T. Skinner Elementary School Principal. These reports are presented at the Local School Council (LSC) monthly meeting and discussed. 
Click on this link for a copy of the LSC Meeting Principal's Report  from January 25, 2016.

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The 2nd grade Brownie Troop 20782 has organized a school supply drive.  All supplies will be donated to Give a Heart to Africa which runs after school programs for students in need in Tanzania as well as adult women. They are in need of donations of school supplies such as: paper clips, dry erase markers, staplers, rulers, water colors, toy cars, glitter, Legos, calculators,  safety scissors, scotch tape, notebooks, and ESL readers.  If you are able to, please consider donating some supplies to the box in the lobby of the school. Thank you from our Girl Scouts!

Student Art Show

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Only a few weeks left to leave your mark on Skinner and support our mosaic! Business logos, family names, quotes, class tiles, be creative! 
Business and photo files should be in the following format:  
  • .jpeg or .pdf
  • black and white
  • the size of the tile (4"x4" or 4"x8" or 8"x8")
  • 150-300 dpi
Gallery 111 will format the family name or other written tiles for you!  
Here are additional tile examples of previous work done by our partner Green Star Movement:  

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Skinner Summer Camp is back for summer 2016! With the blessing of Mrs. Clark & Mrs. Robinson, we have created Superstars Summer Camp Inc. This entity will be separate from Chicago Public Schools and it will allow us to create an even more memorable experience for our campers while still providing the convenience of being housed at Skinner.

We will provide eight weeks of summer fun starting on Monday, June 27th lasting through Friday, August 19th. Keep an eye out for registration information and our camp calendar in the next few weeks. In the meantime, please feel free to reach out to us individually or contact the camp at with any questions or concerns.
Mr. Johnson & Miss O'Brien

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The PTO is hosting their annual Cookie Dough Fundraiser. The funds raised go back to our Skinner Superstars for classroom needs, access to computer programs (IXL/Achieve 3000), field trips, special projects, etc. This year's fundraiser will run from from February 24 - March 10 to ensure delivery for report card pick-up day (April 13th). Be on the lookout for fundraiser packets to be sent home in the coming days.

The next LSC School Improvement Committee meeting will be held on Monday, February 22, at 4:00PM.

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We are excited to announce that this year's Money Smart Week takes place April 23-30. In support of Chicago's Money Smart Week, the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago and its partner organizations are once again sponsoring the Money Smart Kid Essay Contest. Students in grades 5-8 are encouraged to answer this year's Money Smart Question with an essay of 300 words or less. Go here to learn more about this year's Money Smart Question. Essay submissions are due by March 15th.


PTO will be hosting Family Fun Night on Friday, April 29th in celebration of Money Smart Week. Stay tuned for more details.
Karate Spring Registration Now Open

Registration is now open for the Spring session of after school Karate. Classes run Monday & Wednesday from 4:00-5:30, Feb 8th - Jun 8th Flyer is attached here.
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Visit our website at

for more information about what's happening in school.
 All comments, suggestions or requests to submit information

to this newsletter should be emailed to


                                                                                                               Deborah M. Clark