In light of the recent school shooting in Florida, schools across our nation have received numerous unverified, in many instances, prankster threats. Recently, we learned that 16 schools across the nation with the word “North” in their name closed because of unverified threats.
Please be aware that to date District 215 has not received any verifiable threats with regard to our students or staff. Since the February school shooting in Florida, we have taken the following additional safety measures at all of our schools:
- Additional police presence
- Additional after school security support
- Regular building walk-throughs and door checks
- Random locker searches
- Additional presence of adult volunteers
- Other security measures
We want to assure you that during the last three months of school, District 215 is taking this matter serious and sparing no resource to ensure that all students and staff are safe. As we continue to coordinate our increased security measures with our feeder schools and the entire community, it is important to know that we can count on you.
Here are a few things that you can do to aid in the safety of our students in school and in the community:
- Send your child to school every day for a full day of attendance (limit early dismissals).
- Monitor your child’s social media and telephone use.
- Set and expect arrival and departure times to and from school with your child.
- Have discussions regarding school and community safety with your child.
- Communicate to the school any concerns or unusual behaviors that you or your child observe.
It is unfortunate that our school district, along with thousands of districts throughout our country, has to address school safety in such a heightened and intense manner. Rest assured, we are taking the matter very seriously and will continue to be vigilant in our safety efforts.
Finally, know that it is our mission to ensure a safe school environment and culture where we nourish and treasure the minds of our children and their upbringing.
Thank you for your continuous support.
Dr. Creg E. Williams, Ed.D.
In the Spotlight
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/
News and Upcoming Events
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