Track & Field Update

The CICS Bucktown Track & Field Team has hit the ground running, participating in their first practice meet recently. Coach Fraser and Coach McNaughton shared some highlights:

  • 4 x 100 meter relay (7/8 Boys team finished 1st and 5/6 Girls relay team placed in top 5)
  • 100m Dash (7/8 boys Nephtali Rivera – 1st Place and 7/8 girls Jaileen Reyes finished 3rd place)
  • 200m Dash (Both 5/6 girl runners Aixa Martin and Maria-Camila Cedano placed in the top 5)
  • 400m Dash (7/8 boys Darien Dortch and Jelani Jackson each placed in top 5)
  • Long Jump (5/6 girls Kailani Vazquez and 7/8 girls Wisdom Booker each set personal records)
  • High Jump (7/8 boys Karvis Carter set a personal record on his first jump)
  • Shot Put (7/8 boys Jesus Aguilar and Josh Lugo both set personal records)

Thanks for coming out to cheer on our sports teams, Eagle supporters!


Carnival Ticket Pre-Sale

carnival-tentThe CICS Bucktown Carnival is this Wednesday, May 27, from 2:30 – 5:30 p.m. in the school parking lot! Enjoy games, food, prizes, and raffles. Game tickets are 25 cents or 5 for $1. Raffle tickets are $2 each or 3 for $5.

We will be pre-selling both game tickets and raffle tickets in the gym today starting at 3:30 p.m. If you have any food items such as water, pop, chips, or Capri-Suns that you are planning to donate, please drop them off today.

    This year, our raffle includes the following items:

  • One-month membership with uniform to K.S. Hyun’s Hapkido School
  • Philips Sonicare electric toothbrush
  • Harper Cross-Body bag (leaf color)
  • $50 gift card to WhirlyBall
  • $50 gift card to the Framing Design Center
  • 4 tickets for Chicago Architecture Foundation Walking Tour
  • 2 Chicago Wolves tickets
  • 3 Gift certificates to Waveland Bowl for 3 Games of bowling
  • 4 tickets to Schaumburg Boomers baseball game
  • $25 gift certificate to Mayan Sol Latin Grill & Bar
  • $25 gift certificate to Mamma Mia Restaurant
  • Gift card for a free pie from Bakers Square
  • Free dress-down days for the 2015-2016 school year
    We will also be holding a silent auction for the following items:

  • One night stay at the Warwick Allerton Hotel
  • Three-month Super Power Pass at any Export Fitness Club
  • One-month membership with uniform to K.S. Hyun’s Hapkido School
  • Shiraleah Harper Roller Tote (leaf color)

Thank you; we are looking forward to a great carnival!

Distinctive Schools Coding Academy

coderdojo-logoHTML 101: Choose Your Own Adventure
Free to Distinctive Schools students (and families)

Do you ever wonder how the Web can deliver everything from Minecraft, to Facebook, to YouTube videos? Are you eager and ready to learn? By the end of the session, students will understand how HTML, CSS, and Javascript languages work together to build the Web! Then, students (and their families) will use their newfound knowledge to create their own “Choose-Your-Own-Adventure Game.”

Saturday, May 30 • 10:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.
Distinctive Schools Central Office
910 W Van Buren Street, Suite 315

See online sign-up information in this week’s notice packet.

You may also email Michael Cotter for more information or to reserve your seat now!

*Only 20 seats available!

Fifth Grade Service Projects

CICS Bucktown 5th graders in Room 203 are working on service projects for worthy causes! They are currently collaborating in groups to complete charitable projects of their choice, and are writing about their experiences. Check out our kids’ work at and read below to find out what they are collecting and how you can contribute!

*All items for donation can be delivered to room 203*


  • Creating craft kit bags for patients at St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital
  • Creating and selling hair bows to raise funds for St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital
  • Collecting new/used towels, dog/cat food, dog/cat toys, and cleaning supplies for PAWS Chicago
  • Collecting newspaper to be shredded for bedding at the Animal Welfare League of Chicago
  • Collecting socks, clothing, and personal hygiene items (toothbrushes, toothpaste, mouthwash, deodorant, shampoo, soap) for Mercy Home for Boys & Girls
  • Collecting non-perishable food items for Meals on Wheels

These 5th graders are ready to prove that one is never too young to make a difference in our world!

Join Us for Blended Learning Night on May 21

Has your child talked about “blended learning” this year? Are you interested in the latest ways that we are personalizing learning for CICS Bucktown students? If so, we invite you to attend CICS Bucktown Blended Learning Night on Thursday, May 21, from 5:30 to 7:00 p.m.

Dinner will be served from 5:30 – 5:50 p.m. and will be followed by a hands-on blended learning simulation with our teachers. Students whose parents attend will be able to dress down the next day. We’ll also distribute free carnival game tickets, and feature an exciting raffle at the end of the night!

We cannot wait to see you there!

2015-2016 School Calendar

Please click here to view the 2015-2016 CICS Bucktown School Calendar.

Save the Date: CICS Bucktown Carnival, May 27

The annual CICS Bucktown Carnival will be held on Wednesday, May 27, from 2:30 to 5:30 p.m. in the school parking lot. We are seeking both raffle donations, i.e. gift certificates to restaurants or stores, or tickets to sporting events, and food donations, i.e. water, soda, Gatorade, ice, small bags of chips, hot dog and hamburger buns, ketchup, mustard, relish, plastic cutlery, napkins, and plates. Please contact Miss Borio with questions.

We appreciate your support!

Save the Date: Arts & Culture Night, May 14


Technology Fundraiser

Dear Bucktown Parents & Guardians,

We invite you to help us raise funds to purchase new technology for our students by participating in the World’s Finest Chocolate fundraiser.

wfc-logo-crownSimply pick up a box of 60 chocolate bars and start selling! Sell each bar for $1 and return $60 to school by Friday, May 29.

Please pick up your box on Friday, May 1 from 3:00 – 4:30 p.m. in the gym or from 4:30 – 5:30 p.m. in the reception office. We are kicking off the fundraiser with 150 boxes and will distribute them on a first come, first served basis. Thank you in advance for your support!

CICS Board Meeting: May 19

Update: The CICS board meeting originally scheduled for Tuesday, May 12, has been moved to the following date:

Tuesday, May 19
3:30 – 5:30 p.m.
CICS Network Office
11 East Adams, Suite 600
Chicago, IL 60603

CICS board meetings are open to the public. Please call (312) 651-5000 for more information.


Earth Day Explorers

​​​​The cold weather did not keep kindergarten from going on an Earth Day walk! These Earth Day explorers walked the CICS Bucktown campus to observe the ways in which our school helps the earth. They used their special “binoculars” to find different items in recycling bins and to look for classrooms that were saving energy by keeping lights the off!

Career Day

Last Friday was CICS Bucktown Career Day and our kids loved it! We want to thank our guests for donating their time and talking about their areas of expertise. We know that Ms. Heeren’s husband, Mr. Heeren (pictured top, left), thoroughly enjoyed telling our students about his job as a consultant, and then finding many of his business destinations on the map. Dr. Arns (pictured below) taught kids about how to use medicine safely, and Mr. Rodriguez (pictured top, right) engaged students in a mock trial of the “Cruella de Vil case!”


My Voice, My School Survey

Please click here to take the 2015 My Voice, My School Parent and Guardian Survey. We value your feedback and want to continue to work together to make CICS Bucktown the best it can be! The survey is open until April 30, 2015. Only one survey per household is necessary. Thank you for your support.

New Student Registration

Please click here to download a new student registration packet.

2015-2016 Registration

Registration for students who plan to return to CICS Bucktown for the 2015-2016 school year will take place during parent-teacher conferences on March 31 (12:00 – 6:00 p.m.) and April 1 (2:00 – 4:00 p.m.). Please note that registration for new students will be announced after the new student lottery on April 15.

Registration Procedures
1. Please fill out the registration packet and make corrections to the student profile sheet before attending your parent-teacher conference(s).

2. Please bring your completed packet(s) and student profile sheet(s) to school on the day of your parent-teacher conference.

3. Visit the registration table in the gym to complete the registration process. Please be prepared to pay any outstanding fees from this year and applicable school fees for next year. We will be accept cash, money orders made out to “CICS Bucktown” and credit cards as methods of payment during registration. Credit card surcharges will apply.

  • Please note that registration for the 2015-2016 school year cannot be completed for students with outstanding fees from the 2014-15 school year.
  • Students who have not registered and paid their fees by April 15 (lottery date for new students) are at risk of losing their seats at CICS Bucktown.

4. Prior to the start of the 2015-2016 school year, families will be invited back to meet teachers, drop off school supplies, and complete any outstanding paperwork.

Registration Fees

  • Activity Fee ($48) – Mandatory for all students ($3 discount if paid with cash or money order made out to CICS Bucktown).
  • Graduation Fee ($135) – Mandatory for all 2015-2016 8th grade students in addition to the activity fee ($5 discount if paid with cash or money order made out to CICS Bucktown).
  • Character Counts Dress-Down Day Pre-Pay ($20) – Optional for all students. You may pre-pay for the dress-down days at registration or pay $2 cash each dress-down day if your child chooses to participate. ($2 discount if paid with cash or money order made out to CICS Bucktown).

Please call us if you have any questions!

Open House for Prospective Parents

Are you interested in applying to CICS Bucktown? If so, please join us at our open house for prospective parents on Thursday, March 19, 2015 from 5:30 – 6:30 p.m. We look forward to welcoming you!

CICS Bucktown Presents Peter Pan


To make reservations to see Peter Pan, email Ms. Mandley. Please specify the date you would like to attend and the number of tickets you need. Tickets are $4 for children and $8 for adults and can be picked up at the door on the day of the show. Cash only, please.

Happy Birthday, Dr. Seuss

Kindergarten celebrated Dr. Seuss’ birthday yesterday! They talked about rhyming, enjoyed several fun activities, read their favorite Dr. Seuss books, and some of their teachers’ favorites, too.


Get Acquainted with Abe!


If you’ve spent much time on our campus, you’ve most likely heard of “Abe.” If you haven’t, let us please fill you in….

Abe isn’t a man, well he is a boy- kind of, and he definitely wasn’t our 16th president. He may as well be known as honorary mayor of CICS Bucktown, at least in the eyes of our second graders. They love Abe because he visits Ms. Burson’s classroom each Tuesday and does what we wish everybody could do so reliably… he listens!

Years ago, Ms. Barton’s mom, who trains service dogs, came across a young rescue dog- a Chesapeake Bay Retriever. He had an honestness about him, as many dogs do, much like our 16th president. And so he was aptly named “Abe,” after Abraham Lincoln. Since then, the student who has earned ‘student of the week’ honors is fortunate enough to tend to Abe’s needs each Tuesday. He has his own house in the classroom (which he’ll gladly move toward should you ask him) but he’s most comfortable lying on the floor, listening to second graders as they gladly take turns practicing their reading fluency.

We want to thank Abe and Ms. Barton for providing such a wonderful gift to our students. And while we know that Abe may not read this, he’s surely listening!

PARCC Assessment

In March, CICS Bucktown will administer the PARCC Performance Based Assessment for students in grades 3-8 (English Language Arts and Math). We invite you to learn more about the assessment and how students will be able to demonstrate mastery towards Common Core Standards.

Please attend the BPTL Meeting on Thursday, February 26 (5:30 – 6:30 pm.) to learn more about the PARCC assessment. In the meantime, click the following link for more information:

The PARCC website offers several practice tests for students in grades 3-8. Please click the following links to access the practice tests: English Language Arts Practice Tests | Math Practice Tests