Superintendent's Message

Voice Recognition
Voice Recognition

Superintendent's Message

Office of the Superintendent

January 15, 2021
Dear Rich Township Families,
I hope that that this message finds you well and in good spirits. As we have previously communicated, some of our students will return for in-person instruction next Tuesday, January 19. In order to ensure our students are successful as we make this transition, I would like to provide you with a few important updates and helpful reminders.
Read more to learn important information regarding hybrid learning, COVID-19 testing and more. Please read the following communication in its entirety for additional updates.
Hybrid Instruction 
Hybrid learning begins next Tuesday, January 19.  Parents and students can check the student designation for remote or hybrid learning in Power School.  This information was also previously emailed to you.  
Hybrid Learning Model
In the Hybrid model, students will engage in instruction both in-person and remotely. Students will participate in in-person instruction according to an alternating A Week/B Week schedule.  Some groups of students will be identified for priority in-person instruction (Group C) and will attend school every day.  
During the week when students attend school, they will follow their flex schedule in person. During the week when they are learning remotely, they will follow their flex schedule at home. If they are not able to follow their class schedule, the student will still be responsible for completing the work missed during class. 
The district will follow the Center for Disease Control’s guidelines for in-person instruction: 15 students per class and 50 students per large group space. If the student is not able to participate in class while they are on campus due to a class cap, he or she will go to another designated space on campus to join the class remotely.   
Semester 2 Hybrid Learning Calendar 2020-21
A Group: Hybrid learning (one week on campus/one week remote)
B Group: Hybrid learning (one week on campus/one week remote)
C Group: On campus learning
R Group: Off campus, online learning
Monday-Thursday Schedule
On Campus
January 19-22
January 25-29
February 1-5
February 8-12
February 15-19
February 22-26
March 1-5
March 8-12
March 15-19
Fridays are asynchronous Remote Learning days for all students 
Group A 
(A Week)
  • Students will alternate attending in-person instruction beginning January 19, 2021.
  • Students will alternate participation in remote learning beginning January 25, 2021.
Group B 
(B Week)
  • Students will alternate participation in remote learning beginning January 19, 2021. 
Students will alternate attending in-person instruction beginning January 25, 2021.
C Week 
(Priority Groups) 
  • Students will attend in-person instruction beginning 
January 19, 2021. 
  • They will only participate in remote learning on Fridays.  
Group R
(Remote Instruction)
  • Students will engage in full-time remote instruction Monday- Friday. 
Building Entry
All Fine Arts and Communications students will enter the building through the cafeteria door. All STEM students will enter the building through Door #5. Upon entry, students will be required to scan in with their ScholarChip ID and have their temperature checked. 
Important Reminders
  • Students who are reporting to campus for instruction should bring their own Chromebooks fully charged to the building each day. They should also bring their charger. 
  • Students participating in the hybrid session must be in medical compliance. Parents can reach out to their campus nurse if they have any questions. 
  • Families will still have the option to opt out of in-person instruction, if their student or the student’s family member has compromised health.  In this case, students will only engage in instruction remotely.
  • We are asking families to commit to either remote or hybrid for third quarter. Pending health guidance from the CDC, families will have the opportunities to switch from remote to hybrid or hybrid to remote February 19, 2021. 
Student Orientation
On Tuesday, January 19, students returning for hybrid learning will begin the day with an orientation session. Students will receive their new ID and swag bags, meet the staff, as well as participate in a building tour. 
Parent Tech Café
The District 227 Tech Team will host a virtual Parent TechCafé session on Thursday, January 21 at 5:30 pm that will cover “Schoology Parent Accounts.” Topics covered during this session will include an overview of Schoology, account creation, notifications, and what you can “see”. Registration is required using the link below and must be completed by January 20th, no later than 5:30 p.m. Registrations will not be allowed less than 24 hours prior to the event. 
The link to the event will be sent to participants after the registration has been completed. It will take place on Google Meet. 
Ronald McDonald Care Mobile
The Ronald McDonald Care mobile will be on campus on Tuesday, January 26, to provide physicals for our students. Any student that is currently not in compliance for physicals or immunization should complete the required forms on the website.
Click here to complete the forms or get forms from the school nurses. 
This is a great opportunity for our current junior students to receive their required vaccinations for 12th grade. 
STAR Testing 
We will begin our middle of the year STAR testing on Tuesday, January 19. All students in grades 9-11 will take the STAR test during their PE class (this will include band, driver’s ed, and NNDCC) class. Parents should ensure that their student is logged on for class to take this important test.
Financial Aid and Paying for College Workshops
REMINDER: The College Readiness Conference: Cracking the Code will be held virtually Saturday, January 23 from 10:00 – 11:30 a.m.  It will address award package negotiation, how to be successful as a first-generation college student, and post-secondary success in technology and certification programs. There will be attendance incentives for teachers and students.  These 90-minute sessions will include breakout sessions.
Incoming Freshmen Electives
The district is looking forward to making your child’s educational experience the best it can be by offering a range of course offerings and electives that all students can choose from to meet graduation requirements.  The information below is an important form that we hope parents and 8th grade students discuss to choose what electives they would like to participate in during their freshmen year in District 227. 
All parents?of?incoming freshmen are?required?to complete?the?following forms: 
Class of 2025 Elective Choice for SY 20-21 

 If you are the parent/guardian of an incoming freshmen, it is vitally important that you respond to the survey link below so that your child has a choice in their electives and special programming.??We are in the process of scheduling classes and if we do not hear from you, they may be placed into an elective they would not prefer.???Please complete the form even if your student does not plan to attend Rich Township or if you are undecided.?  
Please fill out the survey by?January 25, 2021Your partnership in this effort is greatly appreciated.?If you received this form from your school and/or in an email, you ONLY need to complete it once. 
If you have any questions or need additional information, please contact an Associate Principal at either campus:
Carl Scott: STEM-708-679-5633 
Linnea Garrett: FAC- 708-679-3070 
If you cannot complete the form via email, feel free to call an Associate Principal at the above number and provide the information that is on the back side of this page to provide that information via phone call.  It is important that you remember to share your child’s first and last name and middle school when calling.   
COVID-19 Testing
The district intends to administer the BinaxNOW test to students who present with symptoms of COVID-19 and whose parents or guardians have provided consent for testing. This test is conducted through a nasal swab and with results available in about 15 minutes. This opportunity for testing will be extended to any student or staff that will be participating in our return-to-learn hybrid instruction. Individuals that have any of the following COVID-19 symptoms should stay home:
  • Fever or chills 
  • Cough 
  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing 
  • Fatigue 
  • Muscle or body aches 
  • Headache 
  • New loss of taste or smell 
  • Sore throat 
  • Congestion or runny nose 
  • Nausea or vomiting 
  • Diarrhea 
If an individual displays any of these symptoms during the school day, they will be eligible to receive BinaxNow COVID test, free of charge.  Parents should fill out and return the consent form to the school nurse as soon as possible, but no later than your child’s first day of instruction. There will be a secure drop box near the entry point for students to drop their consent form for the nurse upon entering the building.
If you have any questions regarding this testing, please feel free to reach out to one of our school nurses: Nurse Chapman (708) 679-3026 or Nurse Stokes or Nurse Niendorf (708) 679-5820.
Food Service
The Food Service Department is currently providing five days of FREE breakfast and lunch for any child up to the age of 18 years. Families do not have to live in the community or attend the district schools.  There are no forms to fill out and no income requirements. This program is provided to ALL families regardless of their financial situation.
Parents may pick up meals without children being present. Meals are distributed through contactless drive through curbside distribution at both the STEM and Fine Arts and Communications campuses. 
Due to the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday, the serving schedule has been modified. Please see below. 
Distribution Days and Hours in January:
Tuesday, January 19 from 10 am – 1 pm and 5 pm - 7 pm
Thursday, January 21 from 10 am – 1 pm 
Monday, January 25 from 10 am – 1 pm and 5 pm - 7 pm
Wednesday, January 27 from 10 am – 1 pm 
The next scheduled date for meal distribution is Tuesday, January 19.
Fine Arts and Communications – 5000 Sauk Trail – Richton Park, IL 
STEM Campus – 3600 W. 203rd - Olympia Fields, IL
For more information, visit, call 708-679-5728, or email
  • Healthy meals help fuel student learning.
  • It is safe and convenient - curbside grab and go!
  • Meals are varied and provide healthy daily nutrition.
  • Save time and money on grocery shopping and preparing meals.
  • Any child up to 18 years of age are eligible for free meals all school year.
  • Your participation helps support and strengthen the school nutrition program for all children.
Thank you for taking the time to read this important information. Feel free to reach out to the appropriate person if you have additional questions. 
You may also follow us on social media:
·   Facebook: @District227 @richtownshiphs
·   Twitter: @District227 @DrJohnnieThomas @richtownshiphs
·   Instagram: @district227_ @richtownshiphs
·   Superintendent's Message on our district website:
Your continued support of Rich Township High School District 227 is appreciated and vital to ensure student success. 
Dr. Johnnie Thomas 


Contact Information


Dr. Johnnie Thomas


Office 708-679-5737 

Cell 773-599-0331

Twitter: @DrJohnnieThomas



Ms. Vanessa Glenn

Executive Assistant to Superintendent  


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