April 9, 2021 letter to families from Collinsville CUSD 10 Superintendent Dr. Mark B. Skertich:
April 8, 2021
Spring Break has come and gone and I hope everyone enjoyed the downtime. Longer days are always welcome, however, with more sunlight, our schedules tend to pick-up rather than slow down. I think it’s fair to say, the last six weeks of the school year will fly.
First, state testing has begun and will continue throughout the district in 3rd through 8th grades and high school over the next several weeks. We realize multiple days of assessments are not ideal for our students after enduring a pandemic and an altered school year, nevertheless, the State of Illinois and US Department of Education provided minimal alternative options. While this may not be what we would have chosen, please encourage your child’s best effort throughout the process. The data collected, along with local assessments, will help guide academic decisions in the future.
Late April and early May will mark the return of numerous student recognition opportunities. At Collinsville High School, in-person Academic Signing Day will return this year on April 26th in the Fine Arts Center. We are excited to acknowledge the numerous paths the Class of 2021 will take in the fall. CHS Honors Convocation is scheduled for May 12th in Fletcher Gymnasium and provides the opportunity to recognize student academic accomplishments throughout the school year.
We are also happy to announce the Collinsville High School Class of 2021 will graduate in-person on May 15th, allowing students to graduate with their peers and to have their families see them receive their diplomas. Two ceremonies will be held, students whose last name begins with A-L will graduate first, followed by students whose last name begins with M-Z. The separate ceremonies will provide appropriate social distancing, and give each graduate the opportunity to experience as close to a normal graduation as possible. Friends and family unable to attend in-person will be able to watch online.
Please look for additional information from our schools in the days and weeks ahead about how we will recognize our students’ many accomplishments throughout the district and celebrate the Collinsville High School Class of 2021.
Finally, our district received notification from the Illinois State Board of Education that we will receive over $14.7 million dollars in federal stimulus funds from the third Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief (ESSER III) Grant Program. The funding can be utilized to combat and offset the impact of COVID-19 as it relates to our students’ academic and social emotional needs. The remaining must be used to provide a safe environment and combat COVID-19 in the future by providing larger educational spaces and improved air quality for our students and staff. Twenty-percent of the grant funding is for student academic/social emotional needs, 80% is for qualifying facility improvements. A lot of work remains to be done, but this gives a snapshot of what is on the horizon. We are excited about the positive impact this will have on our district.
Student activities will be plentiful in the months ahead. Whether you are able to watch in-person or stream online, don’t forget to wear your purple and show your Kahok Pride!
Mark B. Skertich, Ed.D.