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Principal's Message

December 2017 / January 2018


Beginnings and endings are perfect opportunities for reflection. As first semester draws to a close and 2018 looms in the distance, students, faculty and staff could reflect upon the following:

What were my goal for this school year? Was I able to accomplish them?
Who are the people in my life that I can depend upon to help me succeed?
Where do I see myself 2018 and how is what I am doing now supporting that vision?

Remember, for Freshmen Academy students to return to their home schools in August 2018 they must have a total of 10 credits. Ten credits will ensure that students are on track to earn a high school diploma from District 215 in the year 2020. Students should be attending Homework Club, using their lunch periods to stay ahead and be sure to sign up for 2nd semester Credit Recovery as soon as possible to make up failed courses.

Mark your calendars for All-School Testing on Friday, January 12th, 2018 and for Spring Parent Conferences Thursday, February, 15th, 2018.

Wishing you, your family and friends the best during this holiday season!

Kent Farlow

In the Spotlight

Quinlan’s Quest

Is Mr. Quinlan here today?  A question heard all too often this school year.  Who is this Mr. Quinlan?  Mr. Quinlan has been the building construction teacher for the last 5 years at the Center for Academics and Technology.  Last spring Mr. Quinlan had his world turned upside down when his son Jack, who is a 17 year old student athlete at Lake Central High School in Indiana, was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoma Leukemia.  The diagnosis came after Jack had a severe back injury and an x-ray showed that his bone marrow was dying.  Although this is the most common type of Leukemia it was not going to be an easy road to treat this horrible disease.  The first step in Jack’s treatment was a common one, chemotherapy.  Jack suffered through several different treatments and experienced common physical side effects, but Mr. Quinlan said the emotional side effects Jack and his family experienced were no comparison to the physical ones.  The treatment disrupted every aspect of his entire families’ lives.  Mr. Quinlan had to be at his son’s side through all of this so that meant time away from work.  Jack missed so many of his typical high school experiences, such as homecoming. 

Jack was offered an opportunity to be part of a clinical trial for a ground breaking new treatment known as Car-T Cell Therapy.  Mr. Quinlan stated that he decided to rely on the expertise of the doctors and his faith, and Jack began the Car-T Cell Therapy.  This would be the first time the Car-T would be done at Lurie Children’s Hospital, but Jack was ready.  The treatment modifies white blood cells to attack the cancer cells in the body, and of course there are side effects.  At the completion of the treatment the Quinlans’ got the best news possible and Jack was determined to be in remission!  However, he was still not out of the woods yet.  The bone marrow transplant was next.  There were no family members that were a match for Jack so he had to be put on the transplant list.  The process when quicker than expected and 2 matches were found.  Jack would need to spend some more time in the hospital after already being there for 32 days.  Jack once again had to battle through some of the worse “expected” side effects once again.  Mr. Quinlan stated that this is when he really saw the ugly side of cancer and hated to have to witness his son go through it. 

Research was the key to successful treatment Jack has received.  So when the Center decided to participate in No Shave November and raise money to be donated to cancer research it was a no brainer for all of us to participate.  Of course, Mr. Quinlan felt a huge connection to this cause and was a full participant and was crowned the buildings best beard by raising the most money out of all the staff participants.  In total the Center raised nearly $500 and donated it to cancer research.   

            When asked about how he even began to handle all this his answer was simple, it’s all about how you go into it.  A positive attitude and outlook is a must.  Also having a strong family, close friends, and a great team of doctors took care of the rest.  Mr. Quinlan also said, that it really takes your heart, mind, and soul to get through the experience.  Along the way he had some “how did I get here moments” and of course asked the question “why” and “what is my role.”  After some searching he realized he was there to protect his son and he was going to do anything and everything he could to accomplish it.  As of now everything is on par with the plan.  When asked about how teaching teenagers, who are like his son, affected him, he said, “I just try to enlighten them, and let them know that things can change in a moment” and never once had a negative feeling towards his students “there was no room for those types of feelings.”  In closing Mr. Quinlan did say that this experience really changed his perspective in everything he does.  He stated it as “kind versus right.”  Sometimes being kind is way more important than simply being right.  

If you are interested in making a donation to cancer research please use the following link:   https://www.calsangels.org/


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