2019-2020 School Year 
Week #21: February 14 - February 21

New Articles

Dates to Remember

Presidents' Day, No Classes - Monday, Feb 17
Test Prep Chicago Info Session - Tuesday, Feb 25, 5:00
LSC Meeting - Tuesday, Feb 25, 6:00
PTO Meeting - Tuesday, Feb 25, 7:00
CPS 2019 - 2020 (Revised) Calendar:  here
New Articles
Reminder - No School 

In honor of Presidents' Day, there is no school on Monday, February 17th.

Dental Awareness Month at Skinner West

February is Dental Awareness Month! Dr. Ned from Skyline Smiles (West Loop) Dentist was kind enough to visit Skinner's k-3 classrooms. He reinforced healthy dental hygiene with students and made sure they had a fun time learning! Students each received a toothbrush, floss, and an some small activity pages! Thank you Dr. Ned!

CPS Budget Overview

Skinner West's Local School Council is pleased to offer you an overview of Chicago Public Schools funding.  Join us on March 16th from 5:30pm-6:30pm for this free event!
Kids First Chicago is a Chicago-based nonprofit whose mission is to provide every child with a high quality education.  Join them as they present an overview of CPS' budgeting process.  The goal of our meeting is to help you better understand how funding is directed to our schools.  We'll discuss the different funding mechanisms that make up CPS' operating budget.  
Please RSVP using the form below.  Spaces are limited.

CPS Department of Arts

Have you seen the CPS Department of Arts Winter Newsletter? If you want to learn about district-wide opportunities for students and teachers, celebrate achievements and connect with Department of Arts news, check it out here.

Test Prep Chicago High School/AC Info Session

On Tuesday, February 25th 5:00pm at Skinner West, Test Prep Chicago owner (Charlie Howard) will give a PowerPoint presentation on the admissions process for Chicago's Selective Enrollment, Independent and Parochial High Schools as well as Chicago's Academic Centers. The presentation will also include information about the different exams required for admission to these schools as well as a brief overview of the different test prep programs Test Prep Chicago offers to help prepare students for these different exams.  
All Skinner parents are invited to attend. 
RSVP Required, please use the link below:

Attention 7th Grade Families
NWEA Prep Course Offered at Skinner

Test Prep Chicago will be offering its 7th grade NWEA MAP test prep course at Skinner West this spring. High scores on the NWEA MAP exam is critical for gaining admission to Chicago's selective enrollment high schools. The class will meet after school on Fridays  from 4-6 pm for eight sessions. The class begins March 13th. See the flyer below for more information.  To register for this class, please visit: this link.

Important note to parents - We are asking parents of enrolled students to 'drop in' with a snack once during the course to help make sure our Superstars are on on track.  Go to 
this link to sign up for a date/time. 

President's Day Soccer Camp
Looking for a fun option for your Superstar this No School Monday? See the flyer below - West Loop Soccer Club is offering a day soccer camp and a discount to Skinner families.  

Summer Camp Option 

Repeat Articles
Skinner West's 17th Annual Gallery 111 Gala
Gallery 111 Gala is only a few weeks away!   
See the invitation below for more details and buy your ticket today at

For those new to Skinner or new to the Gala, please read below for answers to the FAQ's about this fun annual fundraising event!  And for those of you who can't make it to the Gala in person this year, make sure you keep reading for information on how you can still be part of this amazing event!

Who attends the Annual Gala?
Every year, hundreds of Skinner parents, teachers and staff, and community members attend the Gala and have a wonderful time. The Gala is an adults-only event. Come alone, and see friendly faces when you arrive, or plan a class outing with other parents or neighbors!

What is Gallery 111's Annual No Art Left Behind Gala?
The Gala is a fun Saturday night out with other Skinner parents, Skinner teachers and staff, and Skinner community supporters hosted by Gallery 111.  ( Go to our school website to read more about Gallery 111's history and mission.) Attendees will enjoy food, drinks and music.  There is also a silent auction at the Gala.  Many parents have bought amazing auction items over the years - including tickets to concerts, theater and sporting events, museum memberships, artwork, projects designed by Skinner students, and experiences such as Principal for a Day for their child.  

Where is the Gala?
This year the Gala will again be held at the renowned National Museum of Mexican Art, 1852 W. 19th Street in Chicago

When is this year's Gala this year?
Saturday, February 29th  7-11pm
If you need to come late or leave early, no problem.  (There is not a formal sit-down part of the evening.)

What should I wear?
Whatever makes you happy! There is always a range between smart casual to cocktail attire.

Why should I donate, buy a ticket, attend the Gala- where does my money go?
100 percent of the proceeds from this event go to Skinner's art programming. Gallery 111 makes it their mission to provide additional arts education and experiences, beyond Ms. Maatouk's fabulous music program, for all of our Superstars. With the generosity of our Skinner Family at last year's event, and the dedication of grant writing staff, Gallery 111 was able to provide the following programming to the classrooms listed below:
  • Kindergarten: Tiny Tunemakers Residency
  • 1st: May I Have This Dance Residency
  • 2nd: Hubbard Street Dance Residency 
  • 3rd: Will have a Playmakers Residency (funded by Ingenuity)
  • 4th: Poetry Center of Chicago Residency
  • 7th: Silk Road Rising/EPIC Playwriting Residency (funded by the Illinois Arts Council) 
  • 8th: Art Encounter Art/Writing Workshops and Trip to the Art Institute
Our Diverse Learners, Fifth, and Sixth grade classrooms will also be receiving programming this year. We will keep you updated as soon as they have been scheduled.

How do I buy tickets or otherwise support this event?
 and buy your ticket and/or make a donation today.

Can't attend, but still want to support this great cause?
You can still bid on auction items from home by registering through the website at:
Once there, click "sign in" in the upper right hand corner and you will be prompted to register. Once you have done that you are all set to bid!

We look forward to seeing you all on February 29!

Principal Clark's Report

Thank you to all who attended last week's LSC meeting.  
Couldn't make the meeting? Please read Mrs. Clark's LSC report here to learn more about school developments. 
The next LSC meeting is on Tuesday, February 25th at 6:00pm.

New Teacher Assistants

We would like to extend a warm welcome to our new K-2nd grade teacher assistants.  Funding for these positions were allocated to Skinner West as part of the new contract with CTU: 

Alicia Avila
Angelia Huezo
Alexandra Villasenor
Chiquita Henderson

We are happy to have you join our Skinner team!

Skinner's 5th/6th Grade Basketball Superstars

Congratulations to Skinner's 5th/6th Grade Basketball team for these recent accomplishments:

5th/6th Turkey Shootout 1st Place Champions
5th/ 6th MLK Classic 2nd Place
5th/6th Wintrust Classic Champions

We wish them a continued fun and successful season!

Support Skinner West PTO

The Skinner West Parent Teacher Organization (PTO) supports our school by providing classroom resources, cultural experiences, and community building events. All parents are welcome to join! Mark your calendar for our next meeting on Tuesday, Feb. 25 at 7 p.m. You can support the PTO at any time by making a donation at:

You can also support Skinner West PTO while you shop on Amazon. Simply visit and select Skinner School Forum as your charity. The PTO will receive a portion of every eligible purchase you make at no additional cost to you.

Stay Connected

 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
Communications Volunteers are welcome. Donate your time to help increase communications and contact us!
Would you like to add another parent, guardian or caregiver? 
Text SKINNERNEWS to 22828 or click here
(Messaging & data rates may apply)

Deborah M. Clark
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Mark T. Skinner West School, 1260 West Adams Street, Chicago, IL 60607