The Weekly Masthead

News and information from our district and schools

McCRACKEN. MIDDLETON. MEYER. Dates to Know. Meal Menu.


Department of Student Services

We have compiled a list of community resources that may be of interest to District families. Please take a moment to review the list.

Skokie Public Library has shared some information for families about popular online apps that students use. If you would like to learn more, check the list.

Strategic Plan Update

D73.5 Strategic Plan Update informationOn Wednesday, September 28th, Skokie School District 73.5 hosted a Strategic Planning Celebration and Kickoff event. The community was invited to celebrate achievements and accomplishments of the 2018-2023 Strategic Plan and learn about ongoing work for 2024-2029. Visit our 2024-2029 Strategic Planning website page for more information and links to documents that were shared at the event.

October Parent-Teacher Conferences

Register for Parent Teacher ConferencesParents and Guardians are invited to participate in Parent-Teacher Conferences two times a year, once in October and again in February.

Teachers will be available for your choice of in person OR video conferences on Thursday, October 6th from 5:00 to 8:00 p.m. and Friday, October 7th from 8:00 a.m. to 12:00 noon.

October conference registration closes on Monday, October 3rd at 3:00 p.m.


Parents and Guardians will now sign in through the PowerSchool Parent Portal website and then click a link to PowerPTC. Your conference dashboard will open automatically!

Click on the Application Button Click on PowerPTC View your portal

Check the Guardian QuickStart Guide and visit our Parent-Teacher Conferences page for instructions and more information.

SD73.5  Priorities

Welcoming Environment. All students, staff, parents, and community members will feel welcome in our District.

Hiring and Retention. Our community's diversity will be represented in our staff and we will create systems to ensure we retain our staff.

Instruction. We will accelerate learning for all students through a strengths-based approach to grow each student from where they are.

PTO News


October 3, 2022

6:30 to 8:00 p.m.

McCracken MPR

TOPIC: Community Resources

GUESTS: Skokie Public Library, Niles Township Government, ELL Parent Center

• Children welcome
• Refreshments provided
• Parking behind McCracken



October 17, 2022

6:30 to 8:00 p.m.

McCracken MPR

GUESTS: Angela DeMay, Lyla Nissan

District 73.5 PTO logo


8th Grade PSAT Assessment Information

  • The PSAT 8 assessment for our 8th grade students will be administered at Niles North High School on Saturday, October 1, 2022, from 9:00 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. (approximate end time)
  • All 8th graders planning to enroll at Niles North High School are expected to take the PSAT 8, the first high school level exam in the SAT Suite of Assessments. The PSAT 8 establishes a baseline measurement for college and career readiness as a student enters high school. The exams in the SAT Suite of Assessments measure a student's strength in reading, writing/language, and mathematics. Monitoring these same skills at different grade levels allows students, parents, and educators to monitor a student's progress.
  • This assessment is free of charge and given to junior high (middle school) students in the fall of the year prior to high school registration. Results from this test, along with other metrics, will be used for proper 9th grade course placement.
  • Please access the Niles North High School PSAT 8/9 - 8th Grade website for additional information.
  • If you have any questions, please contact Niles North testing coordinator Marija Markovic at 847-626-2177 or by email at [email protected]. A letter was mailed to families from Niles North High School on August 22, 2022.
  • PSAT 8 FAQ Sheet

6th Grade Niles North High School Tutoring

Attention 6th grade students and families! Niles North High School is extending their tutoring program to include 6th grade feeder schools this year. Niles North students will provide tutoring services to students in reading, writing, math, science, and more on Mondays from 4:00 to 5:00 p.m. starting on October 3rd. Please access this Niles North High School flyer to learn more and complete the one-time registration. Thank you to Niles North High School for including our 6th graders in this great program!

Social Media Awareness Reminders

Keep an eye on your students' social media activitiesMany of our middle school students are using technology in multiple ways to communicate with peers outside of school. They may be using smartphones and social media apps to communicate with friends. Social media applications have parental controls for monitoring and safety. At times, students at this age may experience peer conflict that may turn into negative interactions online with friends or acquaintances. Negative interactions or cyberbullying that impacts the school environment may result in school-issued consequences. Please monitor your child’s online presence and help to reinforce online safety and kindness in communication. Please see this social media parent letter that was shared with families on September 26th for more information. We look forward to partnering with you to keep our students safe at school!

Hispanic Heritage Month

Celebrate Hispanic Heritage MonthOur Cultural Diversity Club sponsored by Ms. Lynn Catanus is helping to celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month at McCracken Middle School. They are sharing facts and resources with our students and staff this month. Did you know that Hispanic Heritage Month is celebrated from September 15th to October 15th because September is the anniversary of independence for Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, Mexico, and Chile? Special thanks to our McCracken Cultural Diversity Club for their efforts in celebrating Hispanic Heritage Month!

September Spotlight on Success

Student in a costumeMcCracken students are eligible to earn a wide variety of acknowledgement for their success in school whether remote or in-person! This includes Spotlight on Success, which recognizes students’ academic growth and achievement. Each month, teachers celebrate the many students who have demonstrated academic success in each grade level to honor them for making progress toward learning standards, meeting or extending learning standards, demonstrating great interest in a particular subject area, and/or demonstrating a growth mindset. Students are featured in our morning announcements, receive a certificate in person and by mail, and are delivered a fun incentive by our Ollie Trolley! Congratulations to our September Spotlight on Success recipients!

Parent-Teacher Conferences

District 73.5 will host Parent-Teacher Conferences in person or virtually on Thursday, October 6th from 5:00 to 8:00 p.m. and Friday, October 7th from 8:00 a.m. to 12:00 noon. McCracken students are encouraged to participate in these conferences as a means for self-reflection, progress monitoring, and goal setting. An email with the subject "Parent-Teacher Conference Information" was sent to all families on September 21st and September 26th. Information is also available on our website. Registration opened on Monday, September 26th at 7:00 a.m. and closes on Monday, October 3rd at 3:00 p.m. We encourage parents who are unable to secure conferences to reach out to individual teachers to coordinate another time to connect. PowerSchool is available to families and students to monitor academic progress throughout each trimester. We are so thankful to parents and guardians for their continued partnership! Conference times are available on a first come, first served basis and have been scheduled to allow as many families as possible to meet with their child’s teacher(s) during the conference window. If a teacher’s conference schedule is full, parents can contact the school by phone or email to request a meeting with individual staff members throughout the school year.

Extracurricular Programming

Here at McCracken, we are proud to offer a variety of student athletic and enrichment programs. These programs allow students to exercise their strengths, tackle areas of growth, and socialize with peers. Be sure to sign up your student for one of our great extracurricular activities clubs or activities! Review the Fall 2022 Extracurricular Slideshow (with videos and important links) and Brochure for information, registration links, and the payment link (for a small number of activities).

Purple hornet logo

More from McCracken


Get ready to say “cheese” for our fall picture day on Thursday, October 6th! Students will be photographed by Lifetouch. Please see the attached digital flyer for more information on how to purchase student photo packages. Photos must be purchased online prior to picture day at using your child’s Student ID or Picture Day ID (EVT8CH2M8). Students may also bring the hard copy of the form filled out with payment on picture day.

Thank you to our Teachers and Staff

Drop off bagged snacks, drinks, K-Cups, tea, hot chocolate packets, candy, mints, and more to the school office throughout the year so we can show staff our support.

Dates to Remember

Saturday, October 1st
Niles North High School

8th Grade PSAT Assessment

Thursday, October 6th
McCracken Fall Picture Day

Thursday, October 6th

5:00 to 8:00 p.m.

Parent-Teacher Conferences

Friday, October 7th

8:00 a.m. to 12:00 noon

Parent-Teacher Conferences

Tuesday, October 18th
McCracken Middle School
7:00 p.m.

Symphonic and Concert Band Fall Concert

Friday, October 28th

Institute Day

No school

Tuesday, November 8th

Election Day

No school

Friday, November 11th

Mary Poppins Jr. Musical Performance

7:00 p.m.

Saturday, November 12th

Mary Poppins Jr. Musical Performance

2:00 and 7:00 p.m.


Symphonic Band

On September 27th we had our first in-person assembly at Middleton this year. McCracken students came over and performed for our 4th and 5th grade students. Thank you to the students for a GREAT performance!

5th Grade White Pines Outdoor Education Overnight Trip

Bulldog mascot in the wildernessWe will take our annual overnight trip to Oregon, IL at White Pines Ranch! Students will experience engaging activities such as orienteering with compasses, digging for fossils, hikes, team building, and more! Meals and sleeping accommodations are provided. This year, the trip will be October 19th through 21st. A packet of information was shared with families during the White Pines Information Session before Curriculum Night OR in student backpacks. Please look over the packet and turn in the required forms as soon as possible. All forms and fees are due by October 7th. We look forward to a great trip! If you have any questions, feel free to contact your child’s teacher or Assistant Principal Mrs. Stephanie Larenas, who will also attend the trip.

Middleton Book Fair

Books on a shelfThe Literati Book Fair is coming to Middleton from October 3rd through 7th in the Library! Students will preview the Book Fair during their library class with Ms. Glaser. Students can make a wish list during this time.

The Book Fair will be open for student purchases daily from 8:30 to 9:00 a.m. during homeroom. Students can bring a Literati Gift Card, cash, check, or credit card.

Anyone may shop on the dates and times below. Entrance into school will be either at the front door or by the Gilbert Garden near the SPACE doors.

  • Monday, October 3rd from 3:00 to 6:15 p.m.
  • Tuesday, October 4th from 2:00 to 6:15 p.m.
  • Wednesday, October 5th from 3:00 to 6:15 p.m.
  • Thursday, October 6th from 3:00 to 8:00 p.m. (during Conferences)
  • Friday, October 7th from 8:00 a.m. to 12:00 noon (during Conferences)

The Book Fair is a parent-run event sponsored by the PTO. We need YOU to support Middleton School by signing up for one or more volunteer slots on this sign-up form.

Bulldog mascot/logo

More from Middleton


Niles North High School is offering FREE tutoring for 3rd-6th grade students. Please see this flyer for more information.

Thank you to our Teachers and Staff

Drop off bagged snacks, drinks, K-Cups, tea, hot chocolate packets, candy, mints, and more to the school office throughout the year so we can show staff our support.


We hope to see you at Parent-Teacher Conferences on the evening of October 6th and the morning of October 7th! This is a great opportunity to connect with your child’s teachers and to discuss academic and social-emotional progress. An email with the subject "Parent-Teacher Conference Information" was sent to all families on September 21st and September 26th. Information is also available on our website, including instructions for how to sign up for a conference through the PowerSchool Parent Portal. Conferences are scheduled in October and February both in-person or virtually. 


October is SOCK-tober!

Colorful socks hanging from clothespinsDuring the month of October, we will celebrate SOCK-tober. We will be collecting new socks to be donated to the Niles Township Clothing Closet. Students can bring in new socks of any size, which will be donated at the end of the month. Last year, we donated over 1,000 pairs of socks! 

We want to show our Meyer Shining Stars that even the smallest acts of love, like donating a pair of socks, can make a big difference in the lives of our neighbors, who are in need. 

Circle of feet displaying socksStudents can also show their support by celebrating Wacky Socks Wednesdays! Wear your wacky socks every Wednesday in October. 

Then join us for SOCK-toberfest on October 27th from 6:00 to 7:30 p.m., hosted by the Meyer Parent Leaders. More details will be sent home in October.

Parent-Teacher Conferences

Parent-Teacher Conferences will be held on Thursday, October 6th from 5:00 to 8:00 p.m. and Friday, October 7th from 8:00 a.m. to 12:00 noon. You should have received an email with a link to sign up for a conference time with your child’s teacher. You will have the choice of attending in-person or via Zoom. Please reach out to your child’s classroom teacher if you have any questions.

If you would like to meet with our Physical Education teacher, Mrs. Borges, and/or our Art/Music teacher, Mrs. Castellini, they will be available to meet with parents/guardians on the morning of Friday, October 7th. Please contact them through Seesaw or by email: Mrs. Borges at [email protected]; Mrs. Castellini at [email protected]. 

Meyer Parent Leader Family Meet-Up

Join our Family MeetupThank you to the families that joined our first family meet-up of the year! It was great meeting new families and connecting with current families.

MPL is looking for volunteers to help plan events and activities. Please sign up using this link. 

Check out the MPL's Facebook page or website!

Social Media QR Codes

Car and Booster Seats

Be safe with your Booster Seats!Did you know that children aged 3-6 years old should still be in forward-facing car seats or booster seats, by law? Please help keep our Shining Stars safe by having them buckle up in a car or booster seat, when riding in a vehicle. Please see the age-specific recommendations.

The Skokie Health Department offers a short-term car seat loaner program for Skokie residents. The "TOTS" (Travel Seats Offer Travel Safety) program loans seats at no cost. A $10 deposit is required and will be returned less a $5 cleaning fee when the seat is brought back in good condition. Borrowers are instructed on the proper installation and usage of the seats. Seats can be reserved by calling the Health Department at 847-933-8252.

Chicago Free Museum Days

Take advantage of the wonderful museums we have in Chicago! Many of our museums have "free" days, where admission is free of charge. Please see the list and links below for more information.

Dinosaur skeleton in a museum

Field Museum 

Several free day dates in October and November

Museum of Science and Industry  

Free day dates on October 4th and 5th; November 1st and 8th
Adler Planetarium

Every Wednesday from 4:00 to 10:0 p.m.
The DuSable Museum

Free every Wednesday in 2022; online advance booking required
National Museum of Mexican Art

Always free! Open Tuesday through Sunday from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

Meyer Elementary School logo

More from Meyer

Thank you to our Teachers and Staff

Drop off bagged snacks, drinks, K-Cups, tea, hot chocolate packets, candy, mints, and more to the school office throughout the year so we can show staff our support.

Dates to Remember

October 6th

5:00 to 8:00 p.m.

Parent-Teacher Conferences

October 7th

8:00 a.m. to 12:00 noon

Parent-Teacher Conferences

No school for students

October 10th

Indigenous Peoples’ Day

No school

October 11th

7:00 p.m.

McCracken MPR

Board of Education Meeting

October 20th

7:00 p.m.

Meyer MPR

Meyer Parent Leaders Meeting

October 22nd

Meyer Playground

Meyer Parent Leaders Family Meet-up

October 27th

6:00 to 7:30 p.m.


October 28th

Institute Day

No school for students

November 3rd

Meyer School Picture Retakes

November 8th

Election Day

No school

November 23rd-25th

Thanksgiving Break

No school

Meyer Moments

District Events

PTO: Monthly Meeting

6:30 PM - 8:00 PM

Finance Committee Meeting

7:00 PM - 8:30 PM

PTO: Monthly Meeting

6:30 PM - 8:00 PM

Meal Menu

We're sorry, no events were found for this calendar.

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