2021-2022 School Year 
Week #1: September 2-9 
Dates to Remember
NO SCHOOL - Monday, Sept 6th Labor Day Holiday
STAR Program Starts - Tuesday, September 7
Intro Debate Team Meeting - Thursday, September 9 @ 4:00 p.m.
Virtual PTO Meeting - Monday, September 13 @ 5:30 pm
LSC Meeting - Tuesday, September 21 @ 5:30 pm
Virtual Communications Meeting - Wednesday, October 6 @ 5:00 pm

Front Office Hours: 8:15-4:00 by Appointment Only
New Articles
Drop Off and Pick Up Times and Procedurespick-up

The first few weeks of school are all about getting into the routine. As a reminder, drop-off and pick-up times and locations vary by grade.

Students may arrive at the main building between 8:30 a.m. and 8:45 a.m. at the following designated entrances:
(Main Building)
Main door #1 and go directly to the lunchroom until picked up by their classroom teacher.
1 and 2
Monroe Street side of the building at door #12 and report directly to the multi-purpose room until picked up by their classroom teacher.
3,4, and 5
Main door #1 and report directly to the lunchroom until picked up by their classroom teacher.
6, 7, and 8
Gym doors #10 and 11 and remain in the gym until picked up by classroom their teachers.
Students may arrive at the Branch between 8:40 a.m. and 8:50 a.m. at the following entrance:
Pre-K and Kindergarten
Main door on Aberdeen Street and go directly to the lunchroom.
(Teachers and staff will guide children. Parents are not allowed in the building.)
All pre-K, kindergarten, and 1st grade students (regardless of building) must be picked-up and signed out by a parent or older sibling with parental consent. Students in 2nd - 8th grades will be dismissed outside for parent pick-up.
Pre-K and Kindergarten at the Branch
3:20 pm (pre-K)
3:30-3:45 (K)

Main door on Aberdeen Street

Kindergarten at the Main Building
3:35 p.m.-3:45 p.m.
Gym doors #10 and 11
3:30 p.m.-3:45 p.m.
Monroe Street side of the building at door #12
3:45 p.m.
Monroe Street side of the building at door #12
3, 4, 5, 6
3:45 p.m.
Main door #1
7 and 8
3:45 p.m.
Door #4: Students will be directed to walk along the sidewalk to Adams Street.

This schedule can also be found on the Parking, Pick-Up, and Drop-Off Procedures page of our web site.
Changes to Neighborhood Kindergarten Classesbranch-changes

We would like to share with you the following updates:

NO CPS shuttle bus: Due to the extreme shortage of school bus drivers both locally and nationally, CPS will not be able to provide shuttle buses for our kindergarteners to and from the Branch to the main building. This means that drop-off and pick-up for kindergarteners will have to be at the Branch ONLY. Kindergarteners can be dropped off at the Branch between 8:40 and 8:50. Pick- up at the end of the day will be at the Branch ONLY between 3:30-3:45.  ALL KINDERGARTEN STUDENTS MUST BE SIGNED OUT BY A PARENT. 
Ancillary classes: All ancillary classes (music, art, library, PE, Social and Emotional Learning, foreign language, and science) will take place at the Branch. Kindergarteners will NOT travel from the Branch to the main building on Tuesdays and Thursdays as they have in the past.
Star after-school program: Our after-school Star Program for kindergarteners will be at the Branch instead of the main building. Kindergarten students must be picked up by 6:30 p.m. at the Branch during the Star Program.
Branch security: Branch security personnel are Karla Silva Hayes (between 9:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m.) and Vernon Thomas (between 3:00 p.m. and 6:30 p.m.). They can be reached at the Branch security desk (773) 534- 9499. 
Early pick-up: If a student has to be picked up early at the Branch, please use the parking lot door entrance (off of Jackson Street).

Download Mrs. Clark's entire letter


In our continued response the the COVID-19 pandemic, each child was sent home with a Student Certification and Verification/Attestation Form. Parents/guardians need to complete this form and return it to your child's teacher. If your child has misplaced their form, download another one at the link below.

For the entire school year, CPS is offering COVID testing through a partnership with Thermo Fisher Scientific and Color Health and their ReadyCheckGo™ testing program. This program is completely voluntary. Read more in the informational letter.

Contacting the Schoolcontact

New year, new teacher! Your child's teacher should have given you instructions on their preferred method of contact. But, should you ever forget their email address, you can find it on the Classroom Roster page along with room numbers and links to classroom web sites. (The page will be updated with new teacher emails as they become available.)

If you need to contact the office during regular hours, or the STAR program in an emergency, you can find this information on our Contact Us page. The page also contains frequently requested email addresses for other parent groups.

Does Your Child Like to Debate with You?debate

Put those debating skills to good use (or learn new skills) by joining the Skinner West Debate Team! The first informational meeting will be September 9 at 4 p.m. in Room 321.
Have questions? Email Mr. Lee.

Keep our Superstars Safe!safety


Traffic along Adams and Monroe streets is extremely congested during drop-off and pick-up. Following these guidelines can help ease traffic and keep everyone safe:

  1. Drive slowly and come to a full and complete stop at all stop signs and street lights.
  2. Remind your student to stop and look both ways before crossing. Absolutely NO running into the street!!
  3. Obey the crossing guards (and give them a smile and friendly wave, please!). They are here to help traffic flow.
  4. DO NOT block or park in the bus lanes. 
  5. Curbside parking is available on Adams Street past the stop signs.
  6. DO NOT double park. This may be difficult, but double parking narrows the streets, blocks other parents in, and causes even more traffic back-up. Find a legal spot, even if it's further away.
  7. Don't block our neighbors' driveways.
  8. Parking lots at both buildings are for teachers and staff only.
Please be patient and kind during drop-off and pick-up. We are part of a wonderful community, and should be able to help each other.

Discover the PTOPTO

The Skinner West Parent Teacher Organization (PTO) supports our school in many ways, including getting the whole school involved in fundraising activities and providing supplies and classroom materials requested by teachers.

Learn how you can get involved at the first meeting of the year on Monday, September 13 at 5:30 p.m. via Zoom. All parents and teachers are welcome! 

PTO Zoom link:
Meeting ID: 243 970 8776
Passcode: 113202

All 2021-2022 PTO meetings start at 5:30 p.m.:
  • Monday, September 13
  • Monday, October 18
  • Monday, November 8
  • Monday, December 13
  • Monday, January 10
  • Monday, February 14
  • Monday, March 14
  • Monday, April 18
  • Monday, May 9
  • Monday, June 13
Even if you can't make it, you can support the PTO at

Can You Communicate?communications

Got the gift of gab? Do you stay social? Is writing your release? Then, do we have a volunteer opportunity for you!

The Communications Committee is looking for volunteers to help:
If this sounds like your idea of a good time (and it definitely is... trust us), email and we'll send you the link to our next committee meeting (Wednesday, October 6). All committee work is virtual at this time.

For more information, check out the Communications Committee page on the web site.

Room Parents Still Neededroomparent

We still need a few Room Parents! If your child is in one of these rooms, please consider donating your time:
Room Parents act as a liaison between the classroom teacher and the parent community.  They also help coordinate activities among parents as needed.  Room Parents have a number of specific duties including:
  • Aid teacher in classroom communications
  • Assist parents to sign-up for and receive the Skinner West e-newsletter
  • Communicates needs for volunteers and donations for classroom activities as requested by the teacher
  • Communicate school and classroom news and volunteer opportunities to parents as necessary

Repeat Articles

  • We are happy to announce that the Star Program WILL take place this school year!
  • The Star Program will begin the second week of school, on Tuesday, Sept. 7th.
  • Learn more about Star Program, Star Tuition, and more here:
  • Star Program Registration links are organized by grade level. If a grade level group is at capacity, please place your child on the Star Program wait list.  
  • Register for Star Program Here!
Using SEL to Create More Student-Centered Learning EnvironmentsUsingSEL

Skinner West's primary grade Social-Emotional Learning Teacher, Ms. Jenna Fisher, was featured in this month's InsideCPS blog.  For a glimpse into her plans for the 2021-2022 school year and all the ways she hopes to impact her students today and into the future, read her article here.

School Supply Drop-Off Day
Friday, August 27 9:00am - 3:30pm

Welcome letters, school supply lists, and reading logs for the 2021-2022 school year are also posted on the Skinner West website.  Links to other grades and classrooms are below in the repeat article section.

Note: Supplies may be purchased at retail stores such as Target or Staples, or online at  The Yubbler site will not be available for this year.

Ancillary Supply List (Please note: FOR ALL STUDENTS)

Personal Chromebooks are not required unless specified by the teacher.

Box Tops for Education Now Digital:
Support Skinner West with your Grocery Shoppingboxtop
Box Top for School
What is Box Tops for Education?
Box Tops for Education will donate at least 10¢ to Skinner West for each qualifying item you purchase, at no additional cost to you. 10¢ sounds like a small amount, but adds up quickly! Over the years, Skinner West has earned over $15,000.

Box Tops for Education is now digital. The program is transitioning from Box Tops you clip off of packaging, to digital Box Tops that are collected from your grocery receipts on the Box Tops App. The switch to digital is better for the environment, reduces the amount of expired Box Tops that go to waste, and encourages more companies to participate in the Box Tops for Education program. 
See the Box Tops Flyer here: Box Tops Overview

How Can I Help Skinner West?
  1. Download the free Box Tops for Education App and create a Box Tops account.
  2. Scan your receipts in the Box Tops app once you get your groceries put away, or within 14 days of your purchase. The Box Tops app automatically detects qualified purchases and any Bonus Box Top offers. Your Box Top earnings are immediately deposited in Skinner's Box Top Account. *If you shop online for groceries, you can participate too! Please see details: Online Shopping Receipt
  3. Go Old School. Keep your eyes open for traditional Box Tops during the transition to all-digital Box Tops. Traditional Box Tops can be clipped off packaging and sent to Skinner West Library with your child.
  4. Not Tech Savvy? Tired of Apps? Send your receipts to Skinner West Library within 7 days of purchase and Ms. Ranftl will scan them in for you using the coordinator account.
  5. Ask Friends and Family to help. Anyone can collect Box Tops for Skinner West! Grandparents, Aunts and Uncles, neighbors, high school and college kids can collect traditional Box Tops, use the Box Tops app, or submit receipts to be scanned. 
What Products Participate?
See the full list here: Box Tops Eligible Products

Raise Money for Skinner with Amazon Smilesmile

2. Designate "Skinner School Forum"  
3. Bookmark this page!  Every time you shop at Amazon through the website, the top of the page will read: "Supporting: Skinner School Forum."   

Saint Patrick High School VisitsStPats

If your student is approaching high school and you are interested in learning more about Saint Patrick High School, please contact Paul Csongradi at for further information or guided tours.

Stay Connected

 Visit our website at for more information about what's happening in school.
Front Office Hours: 8:30am - 4:30pm
In-person by appointment ONLY.  Phone: 773 534-7790
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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