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ST. JAMES LUTHERAN SCHOOL PARENT HANDBOOK 2015-2016


HELP US NURTURE A COMMUNITY WHERE LEARNING IS FOR KIDS KNOWLEDGE • INQUIRY • DISCOVERY • SUCCESS


CONTENTS

 SCHOOL GOVERNANCE & OPERATION

WELCOME

FOUNDATIONS & BASIC COMMITMENTS

FISCAL MANAGEMENT

HEALTH AND SAFETY

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3

5

7

9

Legal Status

Governance and Structure

Budget

Medication

Administration

Tuition

Student Illnesses

Fees

Required Medical Examinations

Non-discrimination Policy Philosophy Statement Mission Statement

Tuition Assistance

Emergency Care Lunches and Snacks Emergency Drills and Inspections Drop-Off and Pick-Up Classroom Safety Visitors School Closing


 LIFE TOGETHER

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ACADEMICS

13 Before and After School Care Parent Communication Principal’s Curriculum Advisory Council Parent Responsibility Gift Policy

STUDENT LIFE

THINGS EVERY CHILD SHOULD KNOW

ACADEMIC CALENDAR

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Curricular Areas

School Year/ School Day

Ten Commandments

Attendance

The Lord’s Prayer

Curriculum and Instruction Addressing Individual Needs

Student Conduct

Assessment

Classroom Management

Homework

Student Dress Code

School Library

Electronics and Unacceptable Items

Field Education Project Weeks

Student Records Extracurricular Activities Student Insurances

The Creed The Morning Prayer The Evening Prayer The Common Table Prayer


WELCOME As a staff we are pleased to welcome you to the St. James School family. For over 158 years our school has been preparing students to be productive citizens by being life-long learners. The education of each student depends upon the home-school relationship. We believe that God gives parents the responsibility to raise their children and our role is to support you in your task by providing a quality learning experience. In this partnership we work closely and cooperatively together for the sake of the children. The Parent Handbook covers the information you need to understand how our partnership works. From the foundations of philosophy and governance to the practical systems and responsibilities of the students in their life together, the information in this handbook is important. It is your responsibility to read it and refer to it, as it may answer many of your questions. Above all, our mutual success, and most importantly the success of your child, is dependent on our good communication. Please know that I am always available for your questions and input. I am often at the front door at drop-off and pick-up and will certainly get back to you in a reasonable period of time if you send me an email or a phone message. Together, and by God’s grace, we will continue to provide an excellent education and individual attention to each child’s needs for their success in life. In Christ,

Warren Gast Principal

All policies are subject to review and change without notice.

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1.0 FOUNDATIONS AND BASIC COMMITMENTS


1.1 Legal Status The constitution and by-laws of St. James Evangelical Lutheran Church UAC provides for the operation of a Christian day school. St. James is a 503(c) corporation registered in the State of Illinois.

1.2 Non-discrimination Policy St. James Lutheran School admits students of any race, color, national and ethnic origin to all the rights, privileges, programs and activities generally accorded or made available to students at the school. St. James does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national or ethnic origin in administration of its educational policies, admissions policies, scholarship programs, athletic programs or other school administered programs.

1.3 Philosophy Statement We believe that every child needs to develop the skills and abilities for a life of vocation in service to God and neighbor. No child is too young to begin this process of exploration and growth. While the family is the primary place for learning, the Lutheran School provides a framework to accomplish this growth with a loving and caring commitment to the development of the whole child. We employ inquiry-based learning methods designed to encourage the natural curiosity with each student toward the mastering of knowledge and skills. At the same time, we believe each student as a child of God is learning to live as a Christian in a non-Christian world. The integration of Bible truths into everyday living helps our students remain faithful to their baptism while respecting the diversity of the contemporary world. Success is evidenced by a student’s ability to master knowledge, think critically and creatively express themselves. We further believe that every child is only able to fulfill their potential when the education is experienced in the context of God’s grace and forgiveness. In baptism we are called into our vocation. The baptized life seeks to know truth, goodness and beauty. The dynamic between vocation and mastery of the education standards results in a person who truly is best able to succeed.

1.4 Mission Statement Our mission is to provide inquiry-based learning with a Christian worldview to prepare our students for success throughout life. Our students are exposed to a range of academic disciplines that require students to master specific information, be able to think critically about the information, and to develop the skills to creatively express themselves using the information. The disciplines preparing a student for success in the competitive environment of the 21st century include language (grammar and reading), literature, mathematics, sciences (natural and applied), history, physical education, art and music. The education process is founded in the truth of Jesus Christ as savior as presented in the Holy Bible. We teach that the fullness of our humanity is expressed in baptism and nurtured by the Holy Spirit to develop each person’s potential to live in vocation loving God and loving neighbor.

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2.0 SCHOOL GOVERNANCE AND OPERATION


2.1 Governance and Structure St. James Lutheran School is a ministry of St. James Evangelical Lutheran Church UAC, which is a member of the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod. The senior pastor serves Christ and the congregation as the executive leader and is ultimately responsible for all operating matters. He is also the authority for all things divine within the organization. The authority for all things human is the Fellowship Assembly comprised of persons in formal fellowship of the congregation. The Fellowship Council serves the Assembly as a judicatory board for policy based governance. They do not manage or govern directly but create the objectives and boundaries for the organization.

2.2 Administration The Chief Educational Officer of the school is the Principal. The principal oversees the instruction, assessment, curriculum, faculty and aides, third party educational professionals and educational resources as well as the daily life of the students.

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3.0 FISCAL MANAGEMENT


3.1 Budget The school’s operating budget is prepared in conjunction with the Fellowship Council and submitted to the Fellowship Assembly for approval at its annual meeting in May.

3.2 Tuition Tuition is set each spring for the next academic year. It is our intention to maintain a high value education at St. James. While we attempt to keep the tuition manageable for our families, we must also maintain high standards for staff and programming. Tuition collection is managed by FACTS. In June each family must activate their account with FACTS in time for the billing cycle to begin in July. Account activation includes choosing the payment plan that best suits each family. These options will be outlined in the FACTS information. It is the responsibility of each family to remain current in their payment of tuition. Falling behind or not completing your responsibility causes hardship in our operation and may jeopardize a family’s attendance at St. James Lutheran School. A deposit made with the application for a new student is non-refundable when St. James accepts that student into one of our programs. All deposits are applied to the total tuition. The deposit required for a new student is $400 per student. The deposit amount for a returning student is waived if the family account is current and all enrollment paperwork is completed on time. Enrollment contracts shall be signed and returned to the office by the date indicated on the contract to guarantee a student’s place. After April 2, a family is obligated to half of the total tuition. On or after August 1 the family is responsible for the entire tuition.

3.3 Fees Fees are charges for services performed such as before and after-school programs. There also may be charges for things such as lost or damaged books and late or returned check charges. All fees are due upon billing and shall be paid promptly.

3.4 Tuition Assistance Tuition assistance is available for qualified families. A completed application must be filed with the office by May 1 in order to process and determine an award amount by June 1. The award of tuition assistance does not reduce the quality of a student’s education or the costs associated with the delivery of our services. It is important that families receiving tuition aid adhere to the conditions outlined in the offer. Attendance at worship, Sunday school and after-school faith programs may be a condition of an award.

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4.0 HEALTH AND SAFETY


4.1 Medication All medicine must be administered by a designated administrative staff member. The school cannot dispense medication, prescription or over-the-counter, unless we have a signed permission form. Prescription medications must have both the physical request form and the parent request form on file. Over the counter medications must have the parent request form on file before administration can begin. These forms are valid only for the school year in which they were filed. Students may not carry any medications nor keep it in their possession. Cough drops or throat lozenges are allowable but must be entrusted to the child’s teacher with a note from the parent; teachers will be responsible for distribution. All medication, including inhalers or Epi-Pens, will be kept in the office unless instructed otherwise by a physician. Medicine should be brought to school in the original prescription bottle (pharmacies will give an extra one when asked), or in the container in which it was purchased. It should be clearly marked with the student’s name and dosage to be given, logged in at the office and stored in the office. Medications will be returned to parents at the end of the school year and will not be stored at St. James over the summer. If they are not picked up, medications will be disposed of in the appropriate manner.

4.2 Student Illnesses

Children should be kept at home when exhibiting the following symptoms. 1. If a rash is present that has not been evaluated by a physician. 2. If your child’s oral temperature exceeds 100 degrees F. A child with such a fever should remain home for 24 hours after the temperature returns to normal without the use of fever reducing medicines. 3. If your child vomits and continues to experience nausea and/or vomiting. 4. If your child complains of severe, persistent pain. The symptom should be referred to a physician for evaluation. 5. If your child shows signs of upper respiratory infection (cold symptoms) serious enough to interfere with the child’s ability to learn. 6. If there are signs of conjunctivitis (pink eye) such as matter coming from one or both eyes, itching and/or crusts on eyelids. A child with these symptoms should be evaluated by a physician. 7. If there are open sores that have not been evaluated by a physician. 8. If there are signs of infestation with lice (nits in the hair, itchy scalp).

4.3 Required Medical Examinations Illinois state law mandates the following medical examinations. Students failing to meet the listed deadlines may be dismissed from classes. All forms are due in the office by the first day of school of the current school year. • • •

Dental – required of students entering grades K, 2 or 6. Vision – required of new students and kindergartners. Health/Immunizations – required of new students and those entering grades K, 1 and 6.

St. James is required to report any failure to receive necessary health/dental/vision exams and immunization records to the Illinois State Board of Education. St. James is required to exclude students from school if they have not met such exam or immunization requirements by October 15.

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4.4 Emergency Care The Emergency Information form must be updated annually by all families and on file in the office by August 31. The Authorization of Emergency Care for Students with Severe Allergies must also be on file by August 31 if your child has severe allergies.

4.5 Lunches and Snacks A productive day at school depends on many factors, including nutrition. Please make sure your child has breakfast before coming to school. Students who do not eat breakfast struggle in the morning simply because they are hungry. Snacks and lunch procedures will be addressed by each teacher, depending on the age of the students and any unique allergy situations. However, certain general rules apply: • • • • • •

Soda pop is not allowed. Chewing gum is not allowed. Candy/cookies should be minimized in lunches and are inappropriate for morning snacks. Goodies for birthday celebrations must be cleared with classroom teachers at least 24 hours prior to the celebration. Parents may not drop-off fast food lunches. Besides the health factor, this is very disruptive to the classroom. Parents may be required to adjust their child’s lunch/snack for safety reasons regarding students with extreme allergies. For this reason, students are also discouraged from sharing lunch items.

4.6 Emergency Drills and Inspections Emergency drills are practiced regularly for each child’s safety. Every class has an assigned evacuation path, which is reviewed at the beginning of the school year. The local fire department comes to St. James School each month to supervise the practice of a drill. If you are in the school when the alarm sounds, follow a classroom on their path out of the building to aid the orderly evacuation. Minimum Drills: • 3 Evacuation Drills • 1 Bus Evacuation Drill • 1 Severe Weather Drill/ Shelter in Place • 1 Law Enforcement Drill An emergency plan is maintained in the office for catastrophic events. This plan is filed with the local fire and safety agencies and is available for inspection in the office as well as the office of the State Fire Marshal.

4.7 Drop-Off and Pick-Up “No Parking” signs are posted on both Dickens Avenue and Fremont Street. These are posted for the safety of all our students and are enforced by the Chicago Police Department. Parents are allowed to temporarily park for morning and afternoon pick-up and drop-off in these spaces. They must put their car flashers on if they leave the vehicle otherwise they may be ticketed. Ticketing is also strictly enforced if a cross walk is blocked. Please do not impede the safe crossing of pedestrians.

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“Double parking” to escort children in or out of school is only allowed on Dickens Avenue. Fremont Street is only used for “stop and drop” or pick-up, but the vehicle should never be left unattended. Double parking is absolutely forbidden on Fremont Street. If parents are planning to spend some time in the school (classroom parties, volunteer in the school), they must park elsewhere on the street. Early Childhood students must be signed in and out each day by a parent, guardian or someone designated to pick them up on the Permission to Pick-Up a Student form.

4.8 Classroom Safety Each teacher requires the use of proper safety equipment in connection with classroom activities. St. James complies with the requirements of the Eye Protection in School Act and the Toxic Art Supplies School Act. Toxic art supplies are not used. St. James complies with the applicable requirements of the Asbestos Abatement Act.

4.9 Visitors All visitors (including parents volunteering in classrooms, with the exception of holiday parties) must sign-in at the office and get a visitor pass before going to the classroom or other parts of the building. The sign-in sheet records all visitors. Please do not let strangers into the building without accompanying them to the office. Parents and visitors should not linger in the hallways during the school day. This is distracting to the teachers and children in the classroom. The front entrance or the Café are available for gathering.

4.10 School Closing When conditions require St. James to be closed, each family will be notified by email and a text message or phone call depending on your preferred settings in Alma. Broadcast notification will also be posted. This information can also be found on the Emergency Closing Center website, www.emergencyclosingcenter.com. St. James will be designated as St. James Lincoln Park. If the school must be closed during the course of a school day, parents will be notified and asked to pick-up their children.

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5.0 LIFE TOGETHER


5.1 Before and After School Care Before and after school care is available for families who need quality and safe childcare during work hours. We offer care to any St. James student on the days they are enrolled in school. Before School Care is provided from 7:30 until 8:30 a.m. After School Care is offered from 3:30 - 6:00 p.m. on all full days school is in session. Costs are included in the Schedule of Fees published annually.

5.2 Parent Communication Weekly School Newsletter Tempo is emailed on Monday or the first day of the new school week. It includes current news of the school and church as well as notices and information important for school-home communication. It is a parent’s responsibility to read all school communication when it is sent. Learning Management System Alma offers a parent and student portal to help families stay informed and on track with student learning. The portal provides access to the staff directory, class rosters, attendance history, assignments and grades. The curriculum calendar on Alma gives parents an overview of what is being taught in each subject area. Alma can be accessed through our website by clicking Parent Portal or by visiting stjames. getalma.com. Early Childhood and Elementary Daily Photos Each day the teachers post pictures with explanations using the hashtags #stjearlychildhood and #stjelementary. You don’t need an Instagram account - all the pictures feed onto our website. Early Childhood Photos can be found at school.stjames-lutheran.org/ecphotos. Elementary Photos can be found at school.stjames-lutheran.org/elemphotos. If you’re helping in the classroom or on a field trip, join in on the fun by using the appropriate hashtag. Blog Maverick Magazine is our online magazine, which contains articles about education, life together, table talk, devotions and resources. It can be found at stjamesmag.com. Don’t miss an article by subscribing to the email list on the bottom of the home page. Church and School Calendar The website, www.stjames-lutheran.org, maintains a current and comprehensive calendar, school.stjames-lutheran.org/calendar, of all church and school activities and contact information. This is a dynamic resource and changes with regularity. Athletic Calendar There is an Athletic Calendar on the Health and Athletics page of our website, school.stjameslutheran.org/health. This calendar includes practices, game dates and tournament information. Please note that the athletic calendar is dynamic and therefore subject to change. Social Media St. James is on a variety of social media sites including Facebook (facebook.com/stjameslutheran), Instagram (instagram.com/stjchicago), Twitter (twitter.com/stjchicago) and Pinterest (pinterest.com/stjameslutheran). To view all of our social media posts in one place, view the social media hub on our website, school.stjameslutheran.org/getsocial. Parents may not distribute or display on bulletin boards/walls any communications to students/parents unless approved by the administration.

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5.3 Principal’s Curriculum Advisory Council The PCAC supports the development of a strong and effective curriculum. Working with the principal, three parents and two faculty members meet regularly to review curriculum development and provide input toward maintaining relevance and academic integrity. The parent and faculty members are selected by the principal in the fall and are chosen in consideration of their demonstrated leadership, educational interest or background, spiritual commitment and other qualifications that may seem important.

5.4

Parent Responsibility

Parent responsibilities are outlined in the enrollment contract. It is the parent’s responsibility to be current with tuition and all required forms. Non-compliance will be addressed by administration to remedy the issue. Inability to become compliant may jeopardize a student’s enrollment status. It is our expectation that every family is involved in supporting the school through their volunteer efforts. We choose to encourage rather than mandate service hours. However, service should never be optional but a response to the love and care of Christ through the community. Room Parents are selected by each teacher on the basis of that teacher’s need and expectations. The room parent is a support for the classroom and by working cooperatively with the teacher greatly helps the quality of the classroom and learning experience.

5.5 Gift Policy Thanksgiving and appreciation are appropriate rewards for a job well done! We encourage all of our families to value their teacher’s hard work and acknowledge it as regularly as possible. To avoid possibilities of a conflict of interest, and to maintain fairness within the teaching staff, please adhere to the following guidelines. 5.5.1 Teacher/Aide Gift Policy A teacher/aide gift is one that is specifically given to the teacher and/or a teacher’s aide for their personal use and enjoyment. Guidelines are as follows: • • •

Each family may give gifts totaling not more than $100 per school year per family for a specific teacher or aide. Gifts must be tangible items; cash and general use gift cards (i.e. Visa, American Express, etc.) are not appropriate. Corporate gifts (families pooling resources) are considered classroom gifts. See 5.5.2.

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5.5.2 Classroom Gift Policy A classroom gift is a gift given to a specific classroom, which facilitates an enhanced learning environment for both the teacher and students. Guidelines are as follows: • • • • • •

All classroom gifts must be pre-approved by administration prior to the collection of money or purchase. One classroom gift per year (donations for other items may be made through the administration). Family donations may not exceed $25, and the gift may not exceed $250 in value. The gift must be for the general classroom use and becomes the property of St. James. Families may be invited to participate but are not required. The gift shall be from the whole class not specific families or individuals.

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6.0 ACADEMICS


6.1 Curricular Areas We provide instruction in the following curricular areas: Bible Study Health English Language Arts Physical Education Social Studies Art Mathematics Music Science Culture Studies

6.2 Curriculum and Instruction St. James implements a comprehensive curriculum designed to foster the maximum growth of each child through developmentally appropriate activities adapted to grade level, interest and experience. Classroom areas, activities and routines are designed to promote each child’s social, emotional, cognitive, physical and spiritual development. Students experience a variety of activities that develop skills in each curricular area. The selection of materials and activities is based on research and best practices. The development of curricular goals and instructional objectives is an ongoing process. St. James annually reviews and implements standards from the following organizations: • • • •

National Lutheran Schools Accreditation Northern Illinois District Curriculum Project National Association for the Education of Young Children Illinois State Board of Education

Our instruction is provided in English. We employ a standards-based curriculum utilizing carefully researched materials, creative teaching strategies, varied learning opportunities and integrated technology. Our curricula overviews are available online. St. James provides instruction in American patriotism, the principles of representative government, as enunciated in the American Declaration of Independence, the Constitution of the state of Illinois, the proper use and display of the American Flag, and we recite the Pledge of Allegiance daily. All eighth grade students are required to show evidence of a comprehensive knowledge of the above subject matter.

6.3 Addressing Individual Needs We work collaboratively on behalf of our students and families as it relates to the acquisition of materials and student services such as IEP and 504 plans as well as testing and working through services. We write service plans for our students, which will enable us to provide outside support with CPS designated funds. We attend meetings as invited.

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6.4 Assessment 6.4.1 Assessments Students in grades 1-8 will be tested at the beginning of the school year, near the midpoint and in the spring to measure achievement and diagnose individual needs in terms of meeting and exceeding Illinois state benchmarks. The Educational Counselor will meet with families to interpret results. Our assessment instrument is the Measures of Academic Progress (MAP) developed by the Northwest Evaluation Association. Each student prior to graduation from eighth grade must pass exams covering the Constitution of the United States and the Constitution of the State of Illinois.

6.4.2 Report Cards and Progress Reports Parents and teachers will meet at the end of the first quarter to discuss student progress and review report cards. Early Childhood parents will meet again with their child’s teacher in the spring to review progress. Grades 1-8 will not have formal conferences for quarters 2,3 and 4 but will receive report cards. Conferences may be scheduled throughout the year by the teacher or the parent to monitor student progress.

6.4.3 Grading Policy St. James uses the following grading system at each of the grade levels: Early Childhood (Prekindergarten – Kindergarten) In the early childhood program, students will receive an anecdotal review and the following letter grade to best assess the areas of cognitive, fine/large motor and social/emotional development: P – Proficient A– Approaching E – Emerging N – Not Yet NA - Not Assessed Elementary – Primary (Grades 1 – 2) In grades 1-2, student progress is reported using a developmental continuum representing the knowledge and skills appropriate for the age level of the student. 3= Proficient at grade level 2= Approaching grade level 1= Below grade level

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Elementary – Intermediate (Grades 3 – 4) In grades 3-4, students receive numerical grades. A – Excellent (90-100) B – Above Average (80-89) C – Average (70-79) D – Below Average (60-69) F – Unsatisfactory (below 60) Middle School (Grades 5 – 8) The Middle School will use the following grading system. A+ 100 A 94 A- 92 B+ 90 B 85 B- 83 C+ 81 C 76 C- 72 D 65 F 0-64

6.4.4 Character

Christ calls us to live our lives as a reflection of His grace. For His sake we value compassion, grace, generosity and mercy. At St. James, we expect our students to learn to live these values everyday. Christian Character will be reflected in the quarterly assessment of student performance using the following desired behaviors: Christian Character • Demonstrates self control and accepts responsibility for personal actions • Attentive and follows directions • Demonstrates respect for personal and community property • Communicates in a respectful and courteous manner • Accepts suggestions and opportunities for improvement • Completes work carefully and on time • Cooperates while working in groups; supports others and accepts differences • Uses forgiveness and restoration as the appropriate means for resolving conflicts • Practices cleanliness of mind and body at all times

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6.5 Homework Homework is designed to extend, enrich or reinforce classroom learning. Although homework requirements vary from elementary through middle school, all students may have homework. Parents should set aside time at home each night for homework. In addition to regular homework, students may have long-range assignments such as research papers, science projects, etc. Students should plan accordingly and work at regular increments to accomplish long-range tasks.

6.6 School Library The school library offers our students a variety of books and other resources to enhance their education. Librarians and parent volunteers assist preschool through grade four students with book selections each week. Stories are read to the children in preschool – grade two. A Middle School Library is maintained on the third floor for grades five through eight. Students will access resources as supervised by teachers. Students are allowed to check out two books at a time for a period of one week. Books that are lost must be paid for by the student.

6.7 Field Education Field education is scheduled according to individual classroom needs and interests. Field education is an integral part of the school experience, planned in accordance with curriculum. All students are expected to participate in these experiences. However, some students may be excluded from field trips for disciplinary reasons. Parent volunteers are often needed to assist with transportation. Parent drivers must complete a Private Vehicle Registration Form on file a week prior to the event. In addition to this form, a photocopy of the driver’s insurance card and driver’s license is required to be kept on file. These forms are available on the website, school.stjameslutheran.org/forms. Parents who are chaperoning should not bring younger children on field education experiences. Each teacher is responsible for determining who will chaperon and how many are necessary. Early childhood students are required to bring car seats/boosters when traveling. Parents of students in grades 1 and 2 are expected to comply with Illinois state law regarding the safe seating of their child depending on his/her age, weight and height. (see www.buckleupillinois.org)

6.8 Project Weeks One of the signature features of our Inquiry-Based Learning is the opportunity for students to apply their knowledge and curiosity toward a project for an entire week. This helps students discover their interests, explore new directions, develop collaborative skills and think critically as they follow the projects rubrics. The project rubrics are designed by the faculty to make sure that the students learn through as many disciplines as possible including math, science, reading, writing, history and social studies among others. During these weeks the focus of the entire week will be on the problem posed and the students’ inquiry toward its solution.

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ACADEMICS IN ACTION

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7.0 STUDENT LIFE


7.1 School Year/School Day Illinois state law requires St. James to schedule a minimum of 176 days or 880 hours of instructions. Our school year begins during the week prior to Labor Day, includes four marking periods of approximately nine weeks each and meets or exceeds state requirements. • •

Classroom doors open at 8:15 a.m. each morning for K – grade 8 and begin at 8:30 a.m. for those grades. Pre-K and JK classrooms open at 8:30 a.m. Classes begin at 8:45 a.m. Half-day pre-k classes end at 11:45 a.m. Full-day early childhood classes are dismissed at 3:20 p.m. Elementary and middle school classes are dismissed at 3:30 p.m. All students are released at 11:30 a.m. on early dismissal days.

Each morning elementary and middle school students begin their day with morning devotions, which includes reciting the Pledge of Allegiance.

7.2 Attendance It has been shown that there is a positive relationship between regular attendance, punctuality and school success. It is the parents’ responsibility to make sure that their student is at school on time and ready to learn. Records of attendance are kept on file and included in the student record files. • • • • •

Tardiness is recorded for students in grades 1 – 8 following the 8:30 a.m. bell. This becomes part of the attendance record. Students arriving after 8:30 a.m. must report to the office to receive a tardy slip. Students will not be allowed into classrooms after 8:30 a.m. without a tardy slip. Parents should report absences to the office before 8:45 a.m. Chronic tardiness/absence is disrespectful to teachers and students and will result in a conference with the principal. This may lead to a review of the student’s admission status. Parents should note that attendance records are now a key component to admission procedures for high school. Even though we acknowledge the value of travel, we also recognize the importance of regular school attendance and ask you to schedule any family trips during school vacations. Students who are absent more than 25 percent of the school year will not be admitted the following year.

If you are not sure about whether to send your child to school, call or visit your child’s physician.

7.3 Student Conduct At St. James, the virtues of respect for self and others, honesty and responsible stewardship are emphasized. Each student is expected to maintain a high standard of personal integrity and honor and to observe the regulations of the school. All school rules apply in the classroom and at school and church activities, whether on or off campus. Student conduct must not jeopardize others’ health, safety or well-being. Therefore, there will be zero-tolerance for: verbal abuse (threats, racial slurs, sexual harassment); physical abuse (bullying, fighting); or sexually graphic language, gestures or behaviors. The principal is required to notify the Illinois State Police within three days of written complaints from school personnel concerning incidents of battery committed against such personnel at the school.

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7.4 Classroom Management The classroom is designed to create an environment that promotes learning. Classrooms are resourced in such a way as to be attractive, motivating and instructional. Homeroom teachers and visiting instructors share the responsibilities of maintaining order, safety, cleanliness and enthusiasm. In order to allow all students the opportunity to grow and learn, teachers will differentiate instruction. Thus, students are challenged to annually achieve a year’s worth or more of progress in each of their subject areas. To achieve these rigorous, individual goals, student behavior is carefully managed. Instructional Approach We utilize a Positive Discipline model, which is designed to teacher students to become responsible, respectful and resourceful members of their community. Children learn necessary social and life skills and develop an understanding that they are responsible for their own actions and behavior. The teacher will maintain regular communication with parents concerning student behavior, both appropriate and otherwise. Most disciplinary actions are handled at the classroom level and follow the listed procedures. • • • • •

The teacher will develop a brief set of broad classroom rules with input from the students. The teacher will compliment the demonstration of appropriate behavior as a means of positive reinforcement. The teacher will use verbal cues and/or approach the student exhibiting inappropriate behavior using proximity as a means of redirecting behavior. The teacher will escort the student to the hallway for a private conversation focusing on “I” statements (ie- “I can’t help your classmates learn this lesson because I keep getting distracted by the noise you’re making What do you think I should do?) The teacher will employ a consistent, age-appropriate behavior modification technique (i.e - time away from the group, detention, etc.)

7.5 Student Dress Code The purpose of our Uniform Policy is to ensure the neat and orderly appearance of our students, to reflect a positive image to the community, and to set a standard for appearance and behavior commensurate with being a Christian day school. We believe that this policy plays a valuable role in contributing to the ethos of our school and for setting an appropriate tone. St. James students are expected to be clean, well groomed and in full uniform each day. Dress code at St. James contributes to a sense of unity and conveys an attitude of excellence. Please ensure that your child’s uniform and shoes comply with school regulations. Students’ names should be carefully marked on their uniform clothing tags. Approved clothing is available through Lands’ End: www.landsend.com/school. Tops: Approved St. James logo-wear must always be visible. The approved St. James plaid is the only exterior layer that may be worn without an attached logo. Tops must be white, navy or burgundy and purchased through Lands’ End. Bottoms: Solid color navy or tan bottoms, or the approved plain or plaid jumpers may be worn. Pants, shorts, jumpers and skirts must be purchased through Lands’ End. Footwear: Footwear should be reasonable for safety and daily comfort. Open-toed shoes, Crocs and sling back shoes are unacceptable. Gym shoes are required for playing in the gym.

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Physical Education Uniform: Students in Middle School (gr. 5-8) are required to change for PE class each day. Uniforms must be purchased through Lands’ End. Students should wear Short Sleeve Feminine Fit Basic T-shirt or Boys’ Essential T-Shirt in Gray Heather and Mesh Shorts in Burgundy. Burgundy Sweatpants are optional, but recommended for cool weather. Both the top and bottom contain athletic logos, which reflect the St. James brand. Accessories: Caps, hats, hoods, scarves and bandannas may not be worn in the building. Jewelry may be worn that is appropriate and in good taste. Earrings for boys are unacceptable. Tights and socks should be a solid color white, navy, burgundy or brown. Winter Wear: Boots and snow pants are required for early childhood students to play outside in the snow. Standards: • • • • • • • • • •

The St. James logo should always be visible. Any layer of clothing that is worn in the building as the outer garment must comply with the standards. Clothing should be neat and clean. Stained or rumpled clothing is not considered “in uniform.” Long sleeve shirts may not be worn under short sleeve shirts. Girl’s skirts and shorts must be an appropriate length. Short skirts and shorts will not be allowed. Pant lengths should be tailored to the shoe and should be relaxed and suitable for comfortable movement. Pants are to be worn at the waist or their natural height. Low risers or sagging pants should never be worn. Polo shirts may be worn tucked in or remain out if they lay flat. Tied, exposed belly or altered shirts will not be allowed. Hair must be a natural color. Clothing and accessories must be gender appropriate as determined by administration.

There may be special days when students are allowed to dress by standards other than the dress code. Students who elect not to participate in these special dress days must remain in compliance with the uniform dress code.

7.6 Honors Choir Uniforms Tops: Students must wear a pressed, white button down top with a collar. Tops should not have any embellishments and should be long enough to tuck in to pants or skirts. Bottoms: Boys must wear black or navy dress pants; girls have the option of black or navy dress pants or skirts. Cargo pockets, denim and sweat pants are not acceptable. Accessories and Footwear: A St. James plaid tie will be provided. Students will pick up the tie prior to singing and return the tie at the end of the worship service or concert. Caps, hats, hoods, scarves and bandannas may not be worn. Jewelry may be worn that is appropriate and in good taste. Earrings for boys are unacceptable. Tights and knee socks may be worn by girls if they are solid navy or black. Bright colored shoes may not be worn.

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7.7 Electronics and Unacceptable Items St. James is first and foremost, a learning environment. Objects that interfere with the learning environment are prohibited. This includes, but is not limited to, toys, trading cards, inappropriate literature, MP3 players, cameras, game systems and other electronic devices. Students are not permitted to have any of these items on their persons while on school property. This includes before and after school programs as well as extracurricular activities. Any staff person may confiscate items not allowed in the possession of the student. Items taken away during the school day are sent to the school office to be picked up by the parent. Cell phones may not be turned on during the school day or at extracurricular activities without a teacher’s permission. There is zero tolerance for: • • •

Weapons Drugs Illegal substances

Students not in compliance with this shall be dismissed and law enforcement may be contacted. The principal shall report instances of drug violations or firearm incidents to local law enforcement officials as required by applicable law.

7.8 Student Records St. James is required to maintain copies of birth certificates for each of our students. Parents must submit such documents before enrollment with the admissions application. In the event that a student transfers to another school, St. James will provide unofficial records to the school within ten days of the request provided all financial commitments at St. James have been met.

7.9 Extracurricular Activities St. James provides a variety of extracurricular programs for its students. There are no tryouts for St. James teams. However, to maintain eligibility students must demonstrate consistently acceptable behavior and academic effort in the classroom, as well as regular attendance at practice. Middle school students will be ineligible for practice and competition if: • •

They are receiving any grade lower than a C. They consistently demonstrate unacceptable behavior in the classroom or at extracurricular activities.

The principal will receive regular updates of athletes’ grades and behavior and is authorized to declare ineligibility, determine the extent of the penalty and grant a return to eligibility. Elementary students (gr. 1-4) have limited opportunities for head-to-head athletic competition. Nevertheless, they must also maintain eligibility. The principal will make this determination based on the classroom teachers’ weekly recommendations concerning student behavior and academic effort.

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Student participation in music lessons, scouting and faith formation classes is only limited by their willingness to be respectful and cooperative in their program(s) of choice. Music students are required to pay their fees prior to participation. It is a privilege to participate in any St. James after-school program. Each student’s conduct and behavior toward others must be appropriate Christian behavior. Failure to honor this standard may result in a student’s immediate removal from the program. All policies in this manual pertaining to student behavior and conduct apply to extracurricular activities.

7.9 Student Insurances St. James provides excess accident insurance for all its students. This is designed to pay deductibles and copayments not paid by a family’s standard insurance. It is not designed to replace a standard health insurance policy. Parents should file a claim promptly if an accident occurs at school or any school activity. They should also contact the principal to confirm the date and circumstances regarding the accident.

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THINGS EVERY CHILD SCHOOL KNOW


The Ten Commandments The First Commandment You shall have no other gods. The Second Commandment You shall not misuse the name of the Lord your God. The Third Commandment Remember the Sabbath day by keeping it holy. The Fourth Commandment Honor your father and your mother. The Fifth Commandment You shall not murder. The Sixth Commandment You shall not commit adultery. The Seventh Commandment You shall not steal. The Eighth Commandment You shall not give false testimony against your neighbor. The Ninth Commandment You shall not covet your neighbor’s house. The Tenth Commandment You shall not covet your neighbor’s wife, or his manservant, or maidservant, his ox or donkey, or anything that belongs to your neighbor.

The Creed I believe in God, the Father Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth. And in Jesus Christ, His only Son, our Lord, who was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the Virgin Mary, suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died and was buried. He descended into hell. The third day He rose again from the dead. He ascended into heaven and sits at the right hand of God, the Father Almighty. From thence He will come to judge the living and the dead. I believe in the Holy Spirit, the holy Christian church, the communion of saints, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, and the life everlasting. Amen.

The Lord’s Prayer Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be Thy name, Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread; and forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us; and lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. For thine is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever and ever. Amen.

The Morning Prayer I thank you, my heavenly Father, through Jesus Christ, You dear Son, that You have kept me this night from all harm and danger; and I pray that You would keep me this day also from sin and every evil, that all my doings and life may please You. For into Your hands I commend myself, my body and soul, and all things. Let Your holy angel be with me, that the evil foe have no power over me. Amen.

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The Evening Prayer I thank you, my heavenly Father, through Jesus Christ, Your dear Son, that You have graciously kept me this day; and I pray that You would forgive me all my sins where I have done wrong, and graciously keep me this night. For into Your hands, I commend myself, my body and soul, and all things. Let Your holy angel be with me, that the evil foe may have no power over me. Amen.

The Common Table Prayer Come, Lord Jesus, be our Guest; and let these gifts to us be blessed. Amen.

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ACADEMIC CALENDAR August

24-26 31

Early Childhood VBS First Day of Classes (11:30 a.m. Dismissal)

September

7 Labor Day (No Classes) 24-25 NID Teacher Conference (No Classes)

October

12 30

Columbus Day (No Classes) Report Card Conferences (11:30 a.m. Dismissal)

November

25 26-27

Thanksgiving Break (11:30 a.m. Dismissal) Thanksgiving Break (No Classes)

December

21-31

Christmas Vacation

January 1 Christmas Vacation February 15-19 Winter Vacation March

25 28

Good Friday (No Classes) Easter Monday (No Classes)

April

11-15

Spring Break

May

30

June

10 12 13-17

Memorial Day (No Classes) Last Day of Classes (11:00 a.m. Dismissal) Graduation VBS: Gr. 1-8

For a full calendar of events please visit school.stjames-lutheran.org/calendar.

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ST. JAMES LUTHERAN SCHOOL 2101 N. Fremont Street Chicago, IL 60614 773.525.4990 www.stjames-lutheran.org

St. James Parent Handbook 2015-2016  
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