Dear District 97 Families,
With the first day of school upon us, we want to share some information and updates that we hope will help you and your children get off to a great start to the year. Please reach out to us via Let’s Talk if you have questions or need more information about any of these items.
Senior Director of Communications
D97 Back-to-School Information
As a reminder, we have created a central location for important back-to-school updates and documents: https://www.op97.org/back-to-school.
The district’s COVID-19 Health Safety Plan is linked below and can also be found, along with other COVID-19 resources and information, by going to https://www.op97.org/updatecenter.
- Summary of District 97's COVID-19 Mitigations
- 2022-23 COVID-19 Health and Safety Plan
- COVID-19 Positive Case Notification Form
NEW Share Your Back-to-School Photos!
District 97 families—we want to see your #D97joy on the first day of school! Share your first day photos by tweeting us (@OakPark97, using the hashtags #D97Joy and #MyD97) or emailing them to [email protected].
If you email us photos or videos, we will make sure they comply with the board policies and laws that govern issues such as privacy, appropriate use, etc. before they get posted.
First Day of School and 2022-23 Calendar
The first day of school for the 2022-23 school year will be Wednesday, Aug. 24. We will follow the district’s regular Wednesday schedule, which means our elementary schools will be in session from 8 a.m. to 2:30 p.m., while our middle schools will be in session from 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
You can access the 2022-23 calendars for all 10 of our schools and the district by visiting our website. You also have the ability to export these calendars to your personal calendars. To export any of our online calendars, please visit http://www.op97.org/school-calendars and click on the export button next to the calendar you want to share with your own.
NEW Combined Student and Family Handbook for 2022-23
This year, the district worked to merge the Effective Student Behavior Handbook and Family Handbook into one comprehensive resource, the Student-Family Handbook, in an effort to streamline information for families and staff. The new handbook contains important information regarding school policies, procedures, and guidelines, as well as student rights and responsibilities. It also provides important notifications required by state and federal law.
The purpose of this handbook is to outline for students, families and staff the expectations for building an educational community where everyone feels safe, included and able to learn. Having shared expectations, procedures and policies helps us respect all members of the school community in which we learn and work every day. Please take the time to read through the handbook and review it with your child.
Meal Information for the 2022-23 School Year
Food Service: Free Meals and 2022-23 Menus
For the past two years, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has made it possible for school districts to serve all students free breakfast and lunch through waivers due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The USDA free meal waiver is now expired and will not be extended for the upcoming school year.
PLEASE NOTE: During the 2022-23 school year, all students will be required to pay for their breakfast and lunch meals unless they are directly approved by the State of Illinois or approved after completing the 2022-23 Free and Reduced Lunch Application.
Breakfast and Lunch Menus
The breakfast and lunch menus for our elementary and middle schools are available at http://www.op97.org/business-office/food-service. During the 2022-23 school year, students may:
- Bring a nut-free lunch from home.
- Order school lunch.
Free/Reduced Meal Application
Parents/guardians will need to submit the 2022-23 Free and Reduced Meal Application and be approved in order to be considered for a school fee waiver and other state programs. We encourage all families who currently qualify to take a few minutes to complete the application as soon as possible. Please visit https://www.op97.org/business-office/food-service for more information.
Food Allergies/Nut-Safe Schools
Please visit https://bit.ly/3AyGPpI to access information about the district’s food allergy management program, as well as tips and options for identifying food that is safe for snacks and field trips.
Nuts and nut products are not allowed in any District 97 schools during the 2022-23 school year. This includes products that are labeled “processed in a facility that shares equipment with nut products.” The shift to include lunch was necessary as many students may be eating their lunch in spaces other than the lunchroom due to COVID-19 protocols.
Please visit https://bit.ly/3pxoN0I for information from the district’s technology department about the deployment of student devices, online filtering at home, the district’s acceptable use policy, and the procedures and protocols that are used to set up accounts for students.
The district is currently accepting fee payments for the 2022-23 school year. Full payment is due by September 30, 2022. You can access the fee information by visiting https://www.op97.org/business-office/fees.
D97 Newsletter and Social Media
We will begin sending our MyD97 Weekly Wrap-Up emails on Friday, Aug. 26.
The district uses Facebook and Twitter to help keep the community updated on what is happening in our schools and the district as a whole. In addition, many of our faculty and staff members share information about the learning that is taking place in our classrooms by using the hashtags #oakpark97 and #MyD97.
Email Notification System
The district uses the email notification system BrightArrow to communicate with families via email and phone calls. We encourage you to add 855-994-4242 to the contacts on your phone. This is the number that will appear on your caller ID when either the schools or district make calls using BrightArrow.
Translation and Interpretation Services
District 97 is committed to providing improved language access for all of our students and families. If you are in need of translation or interpretation support during the school year, please contact Lou Anne Johannesson at [email protected] or call 708-524-3000.
The district's Multicultural and Multilingual Parent Advisory Committee (MPAC) also offers a number of supports for students and families. To learn more about MPAC, check out this brief video introduction!