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  1. until
    Join NPN and Dr. Shelley Upton with Chicago Psychotherapy PLLC as we talk through how and when to get your child evaluated for developmental differences for those children presenting as early as preschool years through those with lower support needs who are starting to present after they have begun their education journey. Dr Upton will also speak through her experience with IEP' and how an IEP evaluation and a clinical evaluation differ and how best to utilize them to support your child's needs. This will be a Live Webinar with an opportunity to ask questions. Dr. Upton specializes in the diagnosis of autism spectrum disorder, attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, learning disabilities, and other neurodevelopmental disabilities. She is skilled at conducting a variety of cognitive, neuropsychological, developmental, and adaptive measures with both typically developing and neuro-diverse patients (e.g., ASD, fetal alcohol spectrum disorders, attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder). Dr. Upton also has experience in the administration of various specialty evaluations such as special education eligibility evaluations and evaluations for the purposes of procuring accommodations for high stakes tests (e.g., the ACT and SAT). She has an extensive background in working with neurodiverse clients across the lifespan and their families.
  2. It used to be a painful exercise when I had to write a note to our son’s teachers to let them know we would be taking our son out of school for a family vacation. The guilt would sink in and I would start to think we were bad parents for not putting enough focus on his education. I would write and re-write these emails and would get a knot in my stomach after hitting send as I wondered what his teachers must be thinking of us for prioritizing a trip over the classroom. But as we’ve traveled more and I’ve gotten more practice writing these types of emails, I’ve come to a few basic conclusions: Travel is education. The memories and experiences gained through travel can sometimes be more valuable than the lessons learned inside a classroom. Our son is still very young and him being absent for a handful of days each school year is not going to have an impact on him learning the class material. The time we enjoy together on vacation is crucial for our family. The reliance on technology, work stresses, and constant running around the city for errands, after school activities and birthday parties takes a toll. It is a huge release to be able to leave all this behind and just focus on each other. Some will argue that vacations are no reason to take a child out of school, and I am also very aware that just being able to take a vacation is a privilege. But if you are able to take a trip and decide to do so during your child’s schooldays, here are a few tips on how to write that note to your child’s teacher: Before you send that email, review the school’s policies. What is considered an excused absence vs. an unexcused absence? What, if any consequences, will there be if your child accumulates too many unexcused absences? Communicate well in advance of your trip. Telling your child’s teacher a day or two before you plan on taking your child out of school for a trip is not best practice, and it’s not respecting the teacher’s time. We like to give our son’s teachers at least a month's heads-up when we need to take him out of school so they can modify their lesson plans for him, if necessary. Focus on academics. Your child’s teacher is concerned about your child’s academics, not your family spending a week at Disney World or Spring Training in Arizona during the middle of March when school is in session. So, let your child’s teachers know that your child will be making up any assignments they’ll miss. If assignments are posted online in Google Classroom or another platform, even better. Your child can still complete/submit work on time when they’re gone. Be honest. There’s no reason to make up a story about why your child is going to be absent. You’re taking a trip. At the same time, as mentioned above, you don’t need to share your vacation itinerary with your child’s teachers.
  3. until
    Join NPN for the next School Search Zoom Webinar in our Series: What does a Socially Conscious Curriculum in Preschool look like? According to NAYEC (National Association for the Education of Young Children), Early childhood education settings are often among children’s first communities outside of the home. "Schools should be environments in which children learn that they are valued by others, learn how to treat others with fairness and respect, and learn how to embrace human differences rather than ignore or fear them." Join our panelists to hear about what Early Childhood programs are doing in the classroom to offer developmentally appropriate curriculum to cultivate Socially Conscious Communities. You will have the ability to engage in a Q&A session following the panelist discussion portion. Thank you to our Supporting Sponsor: Park West Co-Op Nursery School Panelists Include Representatives from: Park West Co-Op Nursery School Bennett Day School
  4. until
    Join NPN for the next School Search Zoom Webinar in our Series: How do Middle Schools Support the Development of Executive Function Skills in Students? Parents will learn from our school panelists on what exactly is Executive Function in the school setting, why it is important for students to develop these skills and how schools are supporting building EF in students to help them succeed in the classroom. We want your input! Please submit 1-3 questions you would like our panelists to consider addressing during the webinar. There will also be time for a live Q&A following our moderated discussion. Please submit Questions here: Webinar Questions Our Panelists include Representatives from Bennett Day School and The Academic Center at Whitney Young Magnet High School
  5. How do Schools Both Prepare Students and Support Families Through the High School Search Process? In this School Search Webinar Series, parents will learn how middle schools are helping to support families and students through the high school search process. Schools will share best practices in helping to prepare students through their academic journey with the high school search process in mind. Parents will learn what systems are in place to guide students and families through the process of entrance exams and tours. Schools will talk about how they support families through identifying schools that might be a good fit for their student and what that actually means as well as how to manage the stress and outcomes of the search process! Attendees will have time to ask questions and learn from our panelists. Our esteemed school panel consists of representatives from: Lake Forest Country Day School Catherine Cook School The Frances Xavier Warde School Sacred Heart Schools Chicago North Park Elementary School Thank you to our Presenting Sponsor, Lake Forest Country Day School. And we appreciate our Supporting Sponsors: Catherine Cook School , Sacred Heart Schools Chicago and The Frances Xavier Warde School
  6. until
    How do Schools Both Prepare Students and Support Families Through the High School Search Process? In this School Search Webinar Series, parents will learn how middle schools are helping to support families and students through the high school search process. Schools will share best practices in helping to prepare students through their academic journey with the high school search process in mind. Parents will learn what systems are in place to guide students and families through the process of entrance exams and tours. Schools will talk about how they support families through identifying schools that might be a good fit for their student and what that actually means as well as how to manage the stress and outcomes of the search process! Attendees will have time to ask questions and learn from our panelists. Our esteemed school panel consists of representatives from: Lake Forest Country Day School Catherine Cook School The Frances Xavier Warde School Sacred Heart Schools Chicago North Park Elementary School Thank you to our Presenting Sponsor, Lake Forest Country Day School. And we appreciate our Supporting Sponsors: Catherine Cook School , Sacred Heart Schools Chicago and The Frances Xavier Warde School. By registering for this event, you agree that NPN may share your name and email address with our presenting sponsor. Thank you to our Presenting Sponsor: Lake Forest Country Day School
  7. A healthy, diverse and inclusive classroom environment can allow every student to thrive. Children should be given the opportunity to learn free from discrimination and feel comfortable expressing their identities within their classroom and school community. Parents will learn what practical steps schools take to build a welcoming environment for all students including differing cultures, gender identities and learning differences. Schools will share why creating an inclusive and diverse community is important for all students and families and what they are doing inside the classroom and with families to support these principles. Panel Speakers: Bennett Day School Francis W. Parker School The Frances Xavier Warde School North Park Elementary School
  8. until
    How do Elementary and Middle Schools Provide and Inclusive Environment for all Students? A healthy, diverse and inclusive classroom environment can allow every student to thrive. Children should be given the opportunity to learn free from discrimination and feel comfortable expressing their identities within their classroom and school community. Parents will learn what practical steps schools take to build a welcoming environment for all students including differing cultures, gender identities and learning differences. Schools will share why creating an inclusive and diverse community is important for all students and families and what they are doing inside the classroom and with families to support these principles. Our panel of speakers will include representatives from: Bennett Day School Francis W. Parker School The Frances Xavier Warde School North Park Elementary School
  9. until
    Lycée Français de Chicago invites you to attend our open house. This event will allow you to tour our school and ask key questions to our teachers, staff, parents, and students! Hours: 10:00 am - 11:00 am, 11:00 am - 12:00 pm & 2:00 pm - 3:00 pm: Pre-K (3 year old by 12/31/2024) through 5th grade 11:00 am -12:00 pm, 1:00pm - 2:00pm & 2:00 pm - 3:00 pm: Middle, High school & IB program (taught in English, starting in 9th grade) This is a free event, but RSVP is requested. Please go here to register. Street parking nearby is possible. A nearby parking garage, Ravenswood Garage (entrance off Damen Ave.) is also available. This is an external partner event. Please contact the organization directly with any questions or concerns: admissions@lyceechicago.org or call 773-665-0066 ext 201.
  10. until
    We invite your whole family, including children, to come by Bennett Day School on Saturday, November 11 any time between 9:00 am - 12:00 pm to learn more about our innovative PreK-12 program. This is a free event, but RSVP is required. Please go here to register. There is free parking available on the west side of Morgan and south side of Hubbard, or metered parking on Grand Ave. We are two blocks west of the Grand Blue Line stop and the Halsted 8 bus, and 2 blocks north of the Pink/Green Line Stop at Morgan if those options are convenient to you. This is an external partner event. Please contact the organization directly with any questions or concerns: samantha.rud@bennettday.org.
  11. How To Handle Academic Pressure in Middle & High School: Panelists: Martin Moran, Lead Designer of Middle and Upper School, Bennett Day School (Panelist Sponsor) Anna Carey, Assistant Headteacher , British International School of Chicago, South Loop (Panelist Sponsor) Sarah Moon-Sarudi, Assistant Principal of Student Support, Walter Payton College Prep (Panelist) Tiffany Brownridge, Counselor, Whitney Young Magnet High School (Panelist)
  12. until
    Each session and exhibitor is planned with Chicago families in mind! Visit with representatives from schools and community organizations. Attend sessions to learn about the elementary school application process in CPS, Individualized Education Plans (IEP) for diverse learners, and financial options for help paying for private school. Also, your family will enjoy dance performances from Kenwood School of Ballet and story time with St. Thomas the Apostle School. Stay tuned for more! This is a family-friendly event with activities for children included. ➤ List of exhibitors Sessions 10 am to 11:00 am Paying for Private School Presented by the Big Shoulders Fund, Horizons for Youth, Empower Illinois, and Illinois Action for Children Learn how these organizations support Chicago students financially, academically, and socially, and find out how to apply to their programs. 11:15 am to 12:15 pm CPS 101 What is a magnet school? What is your tier and why does it matter? Come to the school fair to get all of these questions answered and more! In this CPS 101 information session, Grace Lee Sawin of Chicago School GPS will give a presentation that walks you through the elementary school application and admissions process. 12:30 pm to 1:30 pm Understanding IEPs In this session you will learn what an IEP is, how it is designed to help students, and the 6 principals of IDEA. You will walk away with tips on how to be the best advocate for your student during the IEP meeting and other settings. Presented by Natasha Croff--Parent Involvement Specialist, CPS Office of Diverse Learner Supports+Services, and Kimberly Johnson, Regional Cook County Coordinator, Community Residential Services Authority (CRSA) MUST-KNOW INFO When: Saturday, October 21, 10 am--2 pm Where: Kennicott Park, 4434 South Lake Park Avenue Who: FREE for everyone ($20 donation recommended) Registration is required for entry Interested in exhibiting or advertising opportunities? Find out more HERE. Questions? Email Events Manager Elizabeth Gourio at egourio@npnparents.org. By registering for this event, you agree that NPN may share your name and email address with our sponsors. NPN is a 501(c)(3) organization. We rely on the support of our members, partners, supporters, and sponsors to bring exceptional programming like this to parents. Thank you to our Presenting Sponsors
  13. until
    Come join us at the 2nd Annual South Side Early Childhood and Grade School Fair to be held at the Ancona School, 4770 S. Dorchester Ave., on Sunday, November 5th from 11:00 am - 1:00 pm. Presented by The Ancona School and Akiba-Schechter Jewish Day School, this fair connects parents with area early childhood programs, grade schools and community organizations. The fair is free and open to the general public. Please RSVP here: https://forms.diamondmindinc.com/anconaschool/southsideschoolfair
  14. NPN Amy J.

    Understanding IEPs

    until
    An Individualized Education Program (IEP) is designed to help children with a variety of needs including autism, developmental delays, intellectual disabilities, specific learning disabilities, speech or language impairments, and more. Although it is there to help students, parents often find the IEP process difficult to manage and understand, but NPN can help. If your child needs specialized services in school, or you are beginning to wonder if your child needs this type of support, come and learn about this process from experts. In this session you will learn what an IEP is, how it is designed to help students, and the 6 principals of IDEA. You will walk away with tips on how to be the best advocate for your student during the IEP meeting and other settings. There will be time for parents to ask questions at the end. Natasha Croff--Parent Involvement Specialist, CPS Office of Diverse Learner Supports+Services, and Kimberly Johnson, English Language Arts Principal Consultant at Illinois State Board of Education will be presenting. MUST-KNOW INFO When: Saturday, October 21, 12:30 pm -- 1:30 pm Where: Kennicott Park, 4434 South Lake Park Avenue Who: FREE for everyone ($20 donation recommended) This session will take place at NPN's Education & Community Fair at Kennicott Park in Hyde Park. Registration is required for entry. RSVP here:
  15. NPN Amy J.

    CPS 101

    until
    What is a magnet school? What is your tier and why does it matter? Come to the school fair to get all of these questions answered and more! In this CPS 101 information session, Grace Lee Sawin of Chicago School GPS will give a presentation that walks you through the elementary school application and admissions process. There is so much to learn and we will cover it all! You will walk away confident in your ability to navigate the CPS application process. There will be time for questions at the end. MUST-KNOW INFO When: Saturday, October 21, 11:15 am-- 12:15 pm Where: Kennicott Park, 4434 South Lake Park Avenue Who: FREE for everyone ($20 donation recommended) This session will take place at NPN's Education & Community Fair at Kennicott Park in Hyde Park. Registration is required for entry. RSVP here:
  16. NPN Amy J.

    Paying for Private School

    until
    Did you know that there are programs and organizations that will support your child's education by covering all or a portion of students' private school tuition? Come and learn about these organizations and how they support students financially, academically, and socially. You will be surprised at the amount of support available to families and you'll learn how to apply to these programs. All families considering private school are encouraged to attend. Presented by Big Shoulders Fund, Horizons for Youth, Empower Illinois, and Illinois Action for Children MUST-KNOW INFO When: Saturday, October 21, 10 am-- 11 am Where: Kennicott Park, 4434 South Lake Park Avenue Who: FREE for everyone ($20 donation recommended) This session will take place at NPN's Education & Community Fair at Kennicott Park in Hyde Park. Registration is required for entry. Register here:
  17. until
    NPN's Annual Preschool and Elementary School Fair is back! Mark your calendars for September 23, 2023. Held every fall, NPN’s Annual Preschool & Elementary School Fair has been the No. 1 resource for school-searching parents for over 20 years! All attendees will have the chance to win a $50 gift card to the popular restaurant, eden, which is conveniently located right next to Kids' Work Chicago Riverview. Eden is ever-evolving, with a menu that embraces seasonal flavors that cultivate inside our on-site greenhouse or sourced locally from farmers and purveyors. With a fresh-focused culinary team, private dining options, market items & home goods, outdoor patio, and a bar with specialty crafted cocktails, eden is unlike any other restaurant in Chicago. Walk-ins are welcome! ➤ List of participating schools Sessions 9:00 - 9:45am Navigating CPS Preschool Options Presented by Dr. Camille Franklin, Network 4 Family Engagement Coordinator, from CPS Office of Early Childhood Education In this session, parents will learn about preschool options in Chicago Public Schools and how to navigate the CPS preschool application and admissions process. 11:05am - 12:05pm Private Preschool 101: Admissions, Tuition, Diversity & Community Kids Work Chicago Riverview, Bennett Day School, British International School of Chicago Lincoln Park, Lycée Français de Chicago In this session, parents will learn how to determine which schools are a good fit for their child, how to learn about a school community, and how to expertly maneuver the admissions process. Parents will leave with an understanding of the admissions process, and the questions to ask about school culture, tuition/financial aid, and diversity in order to help them find a good-fit school for their family. 12:10 - 1:10pm A Family Guide on the Early Intervention to IEP Transition Process Presented by Tareema Jean-Baptiste from Starnet Chicago In this session, we will walk through the transition from Early Intervention to Early Childhood. Using the workbook "When I'm 3, Where Will I Be?" as a guide, we will explore the importance of a parent's voice and what rights parents have during the process. Parents will learn how to prepare for the Transition Planning meeting, Evaluations, and the IEP meeting, as well as create a timeline that fits their needs. Participants will leave with tangible resources to help make the transition as smooth as possible. 10:00 am to 11:00 am: Dedicated exhibition hall time. The exhibition hall closes at 12:30 pm. MUST-KNOW INFO When: Saturday, September 23, 9am--1pm Where: Kids' Work Chicago Riverview, 3429 N California Ave, Chicago, IL 60618 Who: FREE for NPN members ($20 donation recommended); $20 non-members Join NPN now for $20 using promo code school23 and attend the school fair for free! For new members only. Does not apply to membership renewals. Registration is required for entry This event is designed for parents however, children will not be turned away. Questions? Email Events Manager Elizabeth Gourio at egourio@npnparents.org. By registering for this event, you agree that NPN may share your name and email address with our sponsors. By registering for this event, you agree to the terms of our host venue's liability waiver. Interested in exhibiting or advertising opportunities? Find out more HERE. NPN is a 501(c)(3) organization. We thank our sponsors for their support.
  18. until
    In this session, we will walk through the transition from Early Intervention to Early Childhood. Using the workbook "When I'm 3, Where Will I Be?" as a guide, we will explore the importance of a parent's voice and what rights parents have during the process. Parents will learn how to prepare for the Transition Planning meeting, Evaluations, and the IEP meeting, as well as create a timeline that fits their needs. Participants will leave with tangible resources to help make the transition as smooth as possible. This session will be presented by Tareema Jean-Baptiste from Starnet Chicago. This session is being conducted at NPN's Preschool & Elementary School Fair. RSVP to the school fair to attend! RSVP here: https://www.npnparents.org/events/event/369-npn-annual-preschool-and-elementary-school-fair/
  19. until
    In this session, parents will learn how to determine which schools are a good fit for their child, how to learn about a school community, and how to expertly maneuver the admissions process. Parents will leave with an understanding of the admissions process, and the questions to ask about school culture, tuition/financial aid, and diversity in order to help them find a good-fit school for their family. Schools represented on the panel Kids Work Chicago Riverview Bennett Day School British International School of Chicago Lincoln Park Lycée Français de Chicago This session is being conducted at NPN's Preschool & Elementary School Fair. RSVP to the school fair to attend! RSVP here: https://www.npnparents.org/events/event/369-npn-annual-preschool-and-elementary-school-fair/
  20. until
    Join us for Sunday play at City Garden Waldorf School! The playdate will start in the private garden where families and children can explore the sandbox, play train, mushroom house, and the rest of the secure play space. Children can roll dough and bake bread with a teacher and while the bread bakes, enjoy a short, age-appropriate puppet play. Afterward, enjoy the fresh-baked bread, continue playing and mingling with other NPN families, and if you like, use the time as an opportunity to talk with the school staff about their program and Waldorf early childhood education. City Garden Waldorf School is located at 920 W 19th St, Chicago, IL 60608. There is ample street parking on 19th Street. Enter the school through the garden located between 920 and 912 W. 19th Street.
  21. until
    We're excited to launch Parent Chats! Your monthly virtual opportunity to join in on a casual conversation centered around topics that matter to you. Unlike our monthly webinars that are more structured and have a presenter and topic - you get to lead the discussion, vent about current happenings, or just observe and chime in as you see fit; think of it as our forum in video format! Sitaara and Amy from the NPN staff team will join you. If you've been craving connection but not eager about getting out in the real world for it to happen - we hope you join us. Here are the topics and dates for each Parent Chat this June through August. Participating parents will be automatically entered to win raffle prizes at each chat! In this July chat, focusing on the elementary school years, you could win: - A four-hour party rental for 50 people or less at The Joinery - Four sessions of therapeutic tutoring from Smart Love Family Services - Two pairs of Bel Air full custom boxing gloves (one for a child and one for an adult) - $100 in childcare credits at Otter June 9th: Chat about the early years: pregnancy - preschool July 14th: Talk about the elementary school years: Kindergarten - 6th grade August 18th: Celebrate the tween-teen years: 7th grade - 12th grade
  22. Raising a child is expensive, especially when your child has special needs. Government benefits are helpful however understanding the process can be overwhelming. Well NPN is here to help! In this session, we will discuss what types of benefit programs exist, which benefits programs are available to you, and what is needed for the application process. You will walk away with clarity about government benefits and how to set your child up with financial support as they become an adult. This session is helpful for parents of special needs children from ages 3 to 22. Our Esteemed Presenter: Sherri Schneider, founder, Family Benefit Solutions, Inc For more than 25 years, Sherri has been tirelessly dedicated to helping individuals with special needs and their families. Her career began as a Case Manager in a Community Integrated Living Arrangement (CILA) where she helped those with developmental disabilities and mental illnesses acquire the government benefits they so desperately needed, including SSI, Medicaid, and food stamps. She was instrumental in creating one of the first Community Living Facility (CLF) facilities funded under a Medicaid waiver. Sherri now meets privately with families to thoroughly assess their individual situations and pursue the appropriate benefit assistance program(s), personally guiding them through the application process. Based on her vast experience, she has skillfully established and maintained open, productive relationships with government agencies involved in the decision-making process. Professionals find her in-service expertise to be invaluable as they navigate the government benefit process.
  23. until
    Does your child struggle with focus, irritability, or sleeping? Have you noticed that your child has become more clingy, fidgety, or finicky with food? Are you concerned about a change you observe in your child's behavior? Trying to figure out what is the root cause of a change in a child's behavior can be overwhelming. Well, NPN is here to help. In this session, we will discuss anxiety and bring clarity around what anxiety symptoms look like, when a diagnosis is appropriate, and what supportive resources and treatments are available. This webinar is for children ages 2 - 8 years old who are neurodiverse or neurotypical. Our Esteemed Panelist: Dr. Chrisna M. Perry, Ph.D., Founder & Director, Comprehensive Learning Services Dr. Bill Pasola, Psy.D., Psychotherapist, Smart Love Family Services
  24. Does your child have an IEP or 504 plan? Are you having challenges receiving supportive services in school for your child? Are you overwhelmed with understanding what therapies your insurance will cover and will not cover? Did you know your child can receive accommodations even in college? Do you know your child's rights within the state of Illinois? Well NPN is here to help! In this session, you will learn when it is appropriate to seek legal advice, what rights your child has in the state of Illinois, what are your child's health care rights in the state of Illinois and so much more! Our expert will provide valuable information as well as be ready to answer your questions.
  25. If you're like me, saving for my children's future is a top priority. But it's more than just saving for college: I want to help my kids have positive relationships with money. And that means talking to them early and often about money and finances so that they are equipped with the tools to make good financial choices as adults. However, in the last 10 years, the financial landscape and possibilities have changed drastically with the introduction of cryptocurrency and the Metaverse. As a parent, this leads me to ask so many questions: What does this mean for our kids and their future? How can I better educate myself so that I can safely introduce the world of web3 to my kids? And most importantly, is there a way that I can leverage crypto to incorporate it into our larger wealth-building journey to benefit both myself and my family? All of these questions led my husband and I to start a company called The CryptoMom App, the premiere destination for all things crypto for women, by women. I wanted to create an inclusive, secure platform for women to learn about crypto and then invest it in products that are meaningful to our lives, like college funds. And with April being Financial Literacy Month, there's no better time than today to start learning about cryptocurrency. Here are three ways to start conversations about financial literacy and web3 with your children: 1. Model good behavior by researching first The best way to learn about the basics of crypto is to start researching. There are really great social media accounts for women that encourage conversations and provide the basics of cryptocurrency; Some of my favorites are CryptoWitchClub on Instagram and Elana @TradingFemale on Twitter. You don’t have to know all of the jargon and buzzwords; It’s more about increasing your exposure to slowly gain familiarity. Then, talk about what you've learned with your kids in a casual setting, like at the dinner table. Your kids will certainly be impressed and you get to flex your 'cool mom' muscles! 2. Read Books Together Kids of all ages love to cuddle up and read books together. You can find books at your local library or online that teach kids the basics of crypto, even board books for infants and toddlers like Bitcoin for Babies. For your teens, offer to start a book club and read the book together. Not only are you learning together but you're also building authentic connections that are often difficult to maintain in the teen years. 3. Take the plunge by purchasing yourself first There's no better teacher than experience so now that you're prepared with research and knowledge, take your first step by purchasing your first coin. Don’t feel the need to invest large amounts of money; Invest what you feel comfortable with, whether it's $20 or $200. Platforms like The CryptoMom App allow you to buy small fractions of bitcoin in just three easy steps. If you're looking to connect with other women on their crypto wealth-building journey, sign up for the waitlist for The CryptoMom App to get exclusive, first access to our product.

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