Dear Solomon Family--

Please carefully review this newsletter, full of a lot of information that relates to this week, the start of the school year, and remote learning. I know that our teachers are so excited to see you this week during our meet and greets!

As we prepare, there are several upcoming events and dates where we look to partner with our Solomon parents for the start of a successful year:

  • Thank you to our families that attended our Technology Pick-up Events last Monday and Tuesday. We distributed over 80 devices those two days, and I know that more families still need devices. We are going to schedule another pick-up event as soon as we receive more devices from the district--we have given out practically all the devices that we have at this point. Stay tuned for more information, with the hope that we will be able to host another distribution event at the end of this week.
  • Another thank you goes out to the families and staff that attended our virtual "town hall" for our families of students in our Diverse Learner program last Thursday. It was important for us to hear your concerns and ideas for remote instruction so that we can plan most effectively. For those that missed the town hall, you can find the link to the video recording here and the presentation information here.
  • We are also hosting virtual Solomon Parent Google Suite Review sessions for any interested parents on Tuesday, September 1 (6:00-7:00) and Tuesday, September 8 (5:00-6:00). The goal of these meetings is to help parents feel more comfortable accessing Google Classroom, Google Docs, and other parts of the Google Suite for their child's instruction.
  • Meeting information--Google Meet code: meet.google.com/yqt-cova-pxk; Phone: ‪(US) +1 575-378-3183‬ PIN: ‪624 601 773‬#
  • (Meeting codes for all meetings can always be retrieved from our Google community calendar on our website.)
  • Thank you to the dozen families that attended our first session on August 31!
  • Teachers report back to the building this coming Wednesday, and you can expect an email from your child's homeroom teacher this week with information about the meet and greet, item pick-up student email information (grades Pre-K to 3), your child's remote learning schedule, and the various ways that you can be in communication with your child's teachers during this 1st Quarter of remote learning.
  • The meet and greet information for each homeroom teacher is listed directly below. Meet and greets can be either in person (outside only) or virtual. With these meet and greets, your child will be able to see all of his/her classmates, learn about the "day in the life" of a student during remote learning, and pick up their materials (if in-person). The teacher will also reinforce what you and your child will need to do log in on day one. If your child cannot attend the meet and greet or if the meet and greet is virtual, you will be able to come to Solomon on Friday, September 4, between 8:45-4:30 to retrieve those items.
  • The first day for remote learning for students will be Tuesday, September 8, starting promptly at 9:00am.
  • Our annual Solomon Curriculum Night will be virtual this year on September 22 (time TBD).

All scheduled events and virtual meeting links can be found in the community calendar on our website (solomon.cps.edu). As always, please reach out to me at crgamble@cps.edu or 773-534-5226 with any of your questions or concerns.

In partnership,

Chris Gamble
Principal
Hannah G. Solomon Elementary School
New this year!
I am excited to announce that we have a new partner for Solomon spirit wear this year, SquadLocker. Great new gear--t-shirts, hoodies, sweatpants, shorts, polos, face masks...you name it. Peter the Cougar never looked so good. And, you can order at any time, and it will be delivered to your door. This replaces the once-a-year order that our staff and volunteers had previously organized in the building.

Click here to see what is available now, and be the first on your block to represent Solomon in our new gear!
Remote Learning Frequently Asked Questions
As you already know, all Chicago Public Schools will be starting with remote instruction for the 1st Quarter of the school year, and a decision about the 2nd Quarter and beyond will be made at a later date. These past few weeks, after the district released its framework for remote learning, schools have been working to finalize their plans. We know that plans may need to change in order to best meet our student needs, and we will able to share detailed classroom remote learning schedules with students and families later this week once our staff has returned to work.

In response to questions that we have received from our community, we have gathered responses from the district framework to assist:

  • What will student schedules look like during remote learning?

  • As outlined in the CPS Framework, all students will take part in a combination of synchronous and asynchronous learning. Synchronous learning is when the whole class participates in a live Google Meet, engaging in lessons, discussions, activities, and guided practice. All CPS students will engage in synchronous learning for at least three hours per day. The remainder of our 9:00-4:00 school day is made up of asynchronous learning experiences. Asynchronous learning is independent or conducted in small groups and may consist of self-directed projects, assignments, physical activity, or check-ins with teachers. The break down of the time for synchronous and asynchronous in each grade band is shown above.
  • Additionally, you can expect to see our staff prioritize social emotional learning in a number of different ways--explicitly teaching important skills, building relationships through talking circles, playing games together, and identifying students that can benefit from more specific supports from different members of our Solomon staff.

  • What technology tools will we use?

  • All CPS schools will use the Google Suite, including Google Classroom and Google Meet. Teachers will also be using additional online programs to support their English Language Arts, Math, Social Studies, Science, and Essentials instruction. All families will receive additional information about these digital tools from their child's homeroom teacher.
  • To support your child with the Google Suite, consider attending one of our Solomon Parent Google Suite Training sessions listed at the top of the newsletter; more will be offered throughout the 1st Quarter as we get underway.
  • All students can obtain a Chromebook (K-8) or iPad (Pre-K) from the school on assigned technology distribution days. We are awaiting a delivery from the district of additional devices before scheduling another distribution day; please stay tuned to this newsletter for the latest information.

  • How do I access my child's account?

  • Login at google.cps.edu or cps.edu/portal
  • For families logging in for the first time, follow these steps.

  • What about grading?
  • CPS will return to the district's regular grading policies, with students earning letter grades based on standards mastery. The district will provide additional guidance on unique grading scenarios that could arise due to the impacts of COVID-19.

  • How can I best support my child with his/her remote learning?

  • Common Sense Education, an online resource for supporting parents with the complex needs of digital learning, recommends that you assist your child in the following ways:
  • Setting up for success. This includes making a dedicated space for students for their remote learning, setting a daily routine, and frequently reviewing expectations. Treat each day like a traditional school day and be ready for class each day at 9:00 after having a good night's sleep and breakfast.
  • Staying focused. While it may be impossible to do it every second of the learning day, supervision will help with keeping your child on track. Consider having your child use headphones to minimize distraction (ear buds don't typically work as well with smaller students). Also, consider physical movement and the removal of other devices to help assist your child with self-regulation.
  • Encourage effort by displaying work and giving detailed praise.
  • Motivate by identifying your child's strengths and interests. As the phrase goes, "keep calm and carry on" when you get frustrated, as you inevitably will.
School Opening Updates
Registration: Each year, parents are asked to submit paperwork for their students. Some paperwork is for students that are new to Solomon or Chicago Public Schools, and some is required of all parents. Please see below for required and optional registration and medical paperwork, complete the following documents (here, here, and here), and drop them off at Door #1 any day between 9:00-4:00. Note that paperwork marked "required" is needed for all students at Solomon, new or returning. For more on elementary school registration, click here.
  • REQUIRED: Request for Emergency and Health Information
  • REQUIRED: Student Medical Information 2020-2021
  • REQUIRED: Media Consent Form and Release
  • REQUIRED: Family Income Information Form (by completing this form, even if you don't qualify, it helps us secure additional funding)
  • REQUIRED: School Enrollment Form (only if new to Solomon)
  • REQUIRED: School Messaging Consent Form (only if new to CPS)
  • REQUIRED: Home Language Survey (only if new to CPS)
  • OPTIONAL: Dental Consent Form
  • OPTIONAL: Vision Consent Form
  • For students that have a private dentist: Proof of Dental Examination Form
  • For students that have a private eye doctor: Proof of Vision Examination Form
  • For students with asthma: Asthma Action Plan
  • For students with food allergies: Healthcare Provider Statement for Food Substitutions

This year's supply lists can be found on our school website at https://www.solomon.cps.edu/supplylist.html. We are hopeful and expectant that we will be in the classroom this year, and even if we are not, these materials on the supply list will be used by students in the remote setting.

Fees: Information about this year's student fees will go out after our September 15 Local School Council meeting.
Welcome to Solomon!
In today's installment of "Welcome to Solomon" , we welcome our new school counselor, Ms. Mulholland!

Hi Solomon students and families! My name is Paula Mulholland and I am excited to be your new school counselor! I grew up in Westfield, New York, a small town near Lake Erie. I earned a bachelor’s degree in childhood studies from St. Bonaventure University and a master’s degree in school counseling from the University of Northern Colorado. I’ve been a school counselor for the past three years and an educator in various positions for the past nine years. Outside of school, I enjoy riding my bike along the lakefront, exploring Chicago, playing the ukulele, and cheering on the Chicago Cubs and the Buffalo Bills. I’m looking forward to a great school year and getting to know all of you!
Solomon Calendar
The most up-to-date place where you can find important events at Solomon is our school website's homepage, solomon.cps.edu. Additionally, please be mindful of the following upcoming events:

September 8: First day of remote learning

September 15: Local School Council meeting, 5:30
Community Corner
The State of Illinois is issuing all CPS students their own Pandemic EBT link card with up to $350 for its free lunch program. This card will be loaded monthly until CPS resumes its regular in house teaching schedule, post-emergency Shelter-In-Place restrictions. The deadline to apply has been extended to August 31, 2020.The application is available online here.

The IHDA (Illinois Housing Development Association) was given $396 million of CARES Act funding to provide affordable housing and emergency rental & mortgage assistance due to the COVID 19 crisis. The Emergency Rental Assistance application period is August 10 - August 21. The Emergency Mortgage Assistance application period is August 24- September 4.These application periods may close early if all funds have been distributed. More information is available at IHDA, the Illinois Housing Development Authority website.

Chicago Connected program: Eligible CPS families can now receive high-speed internet in their homes immediately at no cost for up to four years. There are no installation or upfront equipment fees and families are not required to provide a social security number. Families can find out if they are eligible through Chicago Connected's eligibility tool. If eligible, families will be provided an activation code for Comcast or RCN. Families can also reach out to the Solomon Main Office to confirm their eligibility and receive an activation code.

Our partners from J at School are offering registration for supported e-learning during the full school day at 4 different locations; one location is 2 blocks from Solomon at the Lamassu Youth Center (6307 N.Pulaski). Click here for more information on the program and to register.

The Chicago Industrial Arts and Design Center (CIADC) is a not-for-profit educational organization in Rogers Park, offering classes this Fall for ages 12 and up in four studio workshops, each providing hands-on applications to STEM/STEAM. They provide scholarships covering 80-100% of costs, depending on need. Classes are limited to no more than 6 students per shop with ample room for social distancing far exceeding CDC recommendations. The also require that masks be worn at all times, and they sanitize all equipment between each class. CIADC also offers programming for both Teens and Adults in Casting & Molding, Metalworking & Forging, Technology & Design, and Woodworking, and cater to all interests and skill-levels. Side note: My son attended a camp there this summer and learned a ton. We loved it! See here for more information.
To have your email address added to this distribution list, please complete this form.

Newsletters are also available via our website, solomon.cps.edu. Newsletters are sent out weekly, with the exception of holiday and summer breaks.

Questions or concerns? Contact the main office at (773) 534-5226 or email Principal Gamble at crgamble@cps.edu.