COVID-19 Update - Wheaton Academy
Covid-19 Athletics Update: 6/1 Read

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Information

Wheaton Academy Athletics Update for High School Athletes
As we enter Phase 3 of Governor Pritzker’s Restore Illinois Plan, I want to update you on the status of Wheaton Academy’s athletics based upon all current information provided to me through the Illinois High School Athletic Association (IHSA).   As you may know, student eligibility and summer contact and non-contacts days are determined by the IHSA guidelines.  They have filed a plan for the resumption of high school athletics with the Illinois Department of Health.  The IHSA will be providing guidance for all schools following their June 15th board meeting. 

We are preparing for how to resume summer high school athletics once we get those guidelines.  Our goal is to resume Wheaton Academy athletics as soon as we can in a way that cares for the health, wellness and eligibility of our athletes.  I will continue to update you with future announcements as information is available.

Youth Summer Camps Updated COVID-19 Status
Governor Pritzker released on Sunday guidelines to allow for the safe reopening of businesses, as the state moves toward entering Phase 3 of the Restore Illinois plan with restrictions being lifted on May 29, 2020. In Accordance with Governor Pritzker’s announcement and within the parameters of the Restore Illinois plan for reopening Illinois during the COVID-19 crisis we are examining our ability to provide safe programming for the children in our community this summer.

Upon the release of these guidelines we are creating a revised version of our traditional camp. The restructured camp will incorporate smaller group sizes, separate locations allowing for little to no crossover between camp groups, increased sanitation practices, face coverings when necessary, and social distancing restrictions in accordance with Illinois Dept. of Health and CDC guidelines. The tentative dates for this new structure will be June (15th or 22nd, depending on guideline implementation) – July 18th. Camps will be offered on a weekly basis with each session lasting one week (Monday-Thursday). Due to the restrictions on group sizes and the need to provide indoor shelter there will be limited space available for registration. We are aware of this and are looking at shorter camps times (1 ½ hour) with more sessions being offered.

Thank you very much for your understanding. Wheaton Academy wants to maintain its history of excellent day camps and we are working hard to create a positive camp experience to serve the children in a safe and healthy way this summer.

Additional program opportunities for the community are being planned within the parameters of the Restore Illinois Plan and details will be forthcoming.

Brad Byrne
Athletic Director

Dear Warrior Community,

Due to concerns about the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19), and under the current direction of Governor Pritzker and his executive order, in conjunction with the IHSA’s suspension of all summer contact days, we have suspended all summer activities at this time. This includes all summer camps for high school and youth camps. The facilities will unfortunately remain closed until further notice. We will continue to monitor the situation, and as the circumstances change and orders are lifted, we are committed to opening up as soon as we can safely do so under the guidelines.

We know this is a challenging time for everyone, and we appreciate your continued support as we work to address this extraordinary public health issue. Our commitment to the safety and well-being of our entire community, including our outstanding student-athletes and dedicated staff and coaches, remains steadfast, and is our top priority.

We will continue to monitor the situation and provide information and updates related to the opening of our camps and facilities as the guidelines allow.

In Christ,

Brad Byrne
Athletic Director
Wheaton Academy

Dear Wheaton Academy Seniors and Parents,

As we begin the final week of high school for our seniors, we continue to miss all of the live, in-person celebrations that typically take place during this time of year.  We know this is difficult for each senior and each parent.  It’s just not the way we pictured it, but we continue to hold out hope for an in-person graduation ceremony on August 1 that would give our senior class, parents, and faculty some much-desired closure.  We also plan to honor our seniors next weekend and give thanks to God for all He has done over the past four years. 

We want you to know that some of those plans for next weekend have changed.  Our plan for a Baccalaureate Service on campus in our cars is no longer allowed.  On May 2, we were given guidance from the Illinois State Board of Education to consider this type of service.  One week later, we were informed that this guidance had changed and that we were no longer allowed to have any kind of in-person or drive-in ceremony or service in May.  We are disappointed that we will not be able to join together on campus next Friday evening (May 29) for a drive-in Baccalaureate Service. However, we will be putting together an online version of the service that you will not want to miss.  This service is typically a highlight of graduation weekend, and we trust that it will still be a very special time for your family.

We are also planning to air a Senior Tribute video to all seniors at 7:00 p.m. on Sunday, May 31—the day that graduation was supposed to take place.  We want to mark this important day as it signifies the end of a significant chapter in the lives of our students. 

We are thankful for your continued partnership in this unusual final leg of the high school journey.  We look forward to a:

  • Baccalaureate Service—video premiere at 7:00 p.m. on Friday, May 29
  • Senior Tribute—video premiere at 7:00 p.m. on Sunday, May 31
  • Graduation Ceremony—Saturday, August 1, time and location TBD

God’s blessings to each of you as we thank Him for his faithfulness over the last four years.

In Christ,
Steve Bult
Head of School

The head of school, Steve Bult, speaks about the current and future state of Wheaton Academy.

 

Dear Wheaton Academy Seniors and Parents of Seniors,

Over the last weekend, the Illinois State Superintendent issued additional restrictions for graduation ceremonies. We believe that such guidelines and regulations on how many people may gather will impact what we can do for a graduation ceremony on June 27. Therefore, we have decided to postpone graduation until Saturday, August 1. This will give us the best possible chance of holding a graduation ceremony that allows graduates and their families to be together in person. We are committed to having the ceremony on August 1, and we will do whatever we are allowed to do on that day to make the ceremony a special one.

At Wheaton Academy, our graduation ceremony has always been one of the most cherished times of giving thanks to God for all He has done in and through our graduates. It is also a time to honor and recognize parents and family who have walked beside our graduates over the last four years. We believe this type of ceremony is best when done in person. In short, we love each of our seniors and want to celebrate with them and allow them to have closure with their classmates and teachers with whom they have spent the last several years.

After hearing the guidelines given last weekend, we wanted to let you know as soon as possible about our change of plan while giving you the next three months to plan accordingly. This date of August 1 will not change. However, at this time, we are uncertain of the location and time of day. We will send you that information as soon as possible. It is our desire that this schedule change might also allow many of you to have family gatherings and graduation parties in conjunction with the ceremony, provided the gathering restrictions are not as limiting as they might be in June.

We hope and pray that all graduates will be able to attend. However, we are aware that it may be difficult for some graduates and their families to participate in a ceremony on August 1. As always, this ceremony will be live-streamed, and we will read the name of each graduate during the ceremony.

Also, on Sunday, May 31, Wheaton Academy will release a “Senior Tribute” video marking the day we intended to have graduation. This video will be a celebration that honors our seniors, and we trust it will be a keepsake for each of them.

We know that the last few months have been hard for our seniors. Having already been denied so many highlights of their senior year, we want to create a lasting memory for this great group of students. We are grateful that God has allowed us to work with each member of the class of 2020, and all the ways we have seen them persevere and remained steadfast in the present and hopeful for the future. We are so proud of this class!

We look forward to celebrating their accomplishments on August 1 and sending them off to the next great adventure God has for them!

Sincerely,

Steve Bult
Head of School

Kori Hockett
Principal

Steve Karlson
CFO/COO

Dear Parents and Students of Wheaton Academy,

With Governor Pritzker’s order of last Friday to close Illinois schools for the remainder of this school year, we have decided to make a few more adjustments to help our students and teachers finish the year well.  Listed below are some of those adjustments as well as helpful information for the remainder of the school year and summer.

Scheduling Adjustments beginning on  April 27

  • It is still important for students to complete all their work and check-in for “attendance” purposes each day.  Unless you have a plan with Student Services, this will be essential for finishing the year, getting a grade, and receiving credit for all classes taken.
  • We are going to move to a schedule that looks like this:

Monday – 7-period day, WAtv
Tuesday – 7-period day, Chapel
Wednesday – Block day, Principal’s address (Periods 1-3)
Thursday – Block day (Periods 4-7)
Friday – FLEX DAY – Students will not get new content. They will have time to catch up on work; they will not need to check-in for attendance.

Our first Friday Flex Day will be May 1.
The week of May 18-22, we will have senior chapel on Tuesday, May 19

  • Final exams will NOT be worth 20% of the overall grade.Instead, teachers will complete the year with a culmination of learning to serve as the final exam or last learning activity.  Grades for students will reflect all work done throughout the semester, and these last activities will be incorporated into their grade.  This work will be due the week traditionally set aside for exams.  (May 26-29)  All schoolwork needs to be completed by Friday, May 29.
  • We will still do Honor Roll and other end of the year recognitions – those will be shared at the end of the year.

Senior Class Information

  • Seniors who have completed their work and are satisfied with their grades will not need to take final exams.  Their last day of school will be May 22.  Seniors in classes that have concerts, shows, or other culminating activities should plan to complete those.
  • On Friday, May 29, we will have a “Drive-in Bachelaureate” ceremony.This will take place in our parking lot – with appropriate social distancing.  We will have a time of worship, tribute, and prayer for our senior class.
  • On Sunday, May 31, we will air a virtual graduation recognition.  This will not replace our graduation ceremony that we intend to do in June.  Rather it will be a short tribute to recognize the day.
  • There will be a graduation ceremony for seniors Saturday, June 27 (tentative) at Wheaton Academy.At this point, we don’t know if it will be just for the senior class and broadcast to families or if we will be able to allow seniors to bring a few guests.  We will keep you posted, and information will follow, but we wanted to give you the date for planning purposes.

End of Year Events/Details

  • We will be publicizing our plan for virtual concerts and activities throughout the month of May.  Here are some dates we do know now:
    • Our Academy Awards event will “air” on Wednesday evening, May 13. Details will be sent home to families next week.
    • We are going to have a “Homestaying Week” – a nod to Homecoming.  This will happen the week of May 4.  Keep an eye out for activities, challenges, and class competitions for this week.
    • Winterim trips are typically revealed in the Spring semester with student applications submitted and rosters determined before summer break.  We are delaying the revealing of Winterim trips until August.
  • Now that we have direction for the rest of the year, refunds for fees for trips that were canceled and athletics will be processed by the business office.  Questions about refunds should be directed to your child’s coach or sponsor, and they will direct you to the business office.

Summer Academy and Summer Athletics

  • Wheaton Academy will have summer school as planned.At this point, we do not know the format  – we will let you know about what classes will run and in what format in May.
  • The status of Summer Athletic camps is to be determined based on guidelines and restrictions from the state and IHSA.

Thank you for your perseverance and flexibility at this time.  With the hard work of our teachers and students, they will be able to finish the year, receive credit, and be equipped to move onto the next course in the fall.  This is a blessing for students that will serve them well not only now but well into the future.

As we finish the end of school in a way that seems like it should be part of a movie, I want to leave you with Romans 5:3-5:

And not only that, but we also boast in our afflictions, because we know that affliction produces endurance, endurance produces proven character, and proven character produces hope.  This hope will not disappoint us, because God’s love has been poured out in our hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given to us.

Our circumstances have required endurance, and yet we hold fast to God’s promise that His hope and love never disappoint us.

You may click here for my most recent video address.

Thank you for being the community that you are.  We are beyond blessed.

Kori Hockett

Dear Parents and Students of Wheaton Academy,

As many of you heard today, Governor Pritzker made the announcement we will have to finish school in an E-learning platform. This is such a disappointment as it is not what we wanted for the end of this school year.  Our team has been planning for many scenarios, including this one, to ensure that our students have the best experience we can provide, given these circumstances. On Monday, April 20, I will be sending out an email and releasing a video with details you will need regarding the end of the year.

Our students and teachers have already persevered through these circumstances so well, and we will continue to do that as we complete the year. This weekend I am claiming Isaiah 40:28-31:

Do you not know? Have you not heard? The Lord is the everlasting God,
the Creator of the ends of the earth. He will not grow tired or weary,
and his understanding no one can fathom.
He gives strength to the weary

and increases the power of the weak. Even youths grow tired and weary,
and young men stumble and fall;
but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength.
They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary,

they will walk and not be faint.

Thank goodness that God does not get tired, and that because of Him, our hope and strength are real.

Blessings and gratitude,
Kori Hockett

Dear Parents and Students of Wheaton Academy,

In light of Governor Pritzker’s extended stay at home order, we will continue with E-learning through April 30.  Wheaton Academy is prepared for these circumstances, and we are meeting the state guidelines. I can assure you that we are focused on two things: caring for our students and ensuring that their learning continues.

Here are a few things we will need to put in place as we navigate the month of April:

  1. The guidelines for time of instruction and work continue to be that students should be spending between 4-6 hours per day TOTAL on their instruction and assignments. That breaks down to about 30-45 minutes per class.  We will continue to use our regular schedule – Monday, Tuesday, and Friday are “regular” days, and Wednesday and Thursday are block days – which would mean classes on these days 60-90 minutes per class.
  2. We will be taking attendance for each class to validate the instruction and engagement that is taking place.  We will continue to be flexible with the “time” that students do their work and honor the fact that everyone has different technology circumstances.  Our method of taking attendance will be that students need to log in, and “respond” to what is required from them for each class, every day.  This could be submitting an assignment, responding to a question, participating in a discussion, or other things.  Attendance will be recorded the following day to allow students to complete their assignments on a flexible schedule; however, we will need to follow up if students are not responding to their classes and teachers.
  3. On Thursday, April 9, we will be sending out a parent feedback survey to get your feedback and experience on E-learning.  Teachers are getting feedback from students regularly and we want to hear from you as parents.  Thanks in advance for completing this for us.
  4. Information about AP test administration will be communicated to students as we receive it.  Teachers will continue to work to prepare students to succeed on these exams.  They will be issued online and will be open book free-response application questions.  Our teachers will be working with students to help them get ready for this new format and to help them prepare to succeed on these exams.
    • Exams will be given May 11-26
    • Exams will all be given at the same time for students taking the exam; makeup exams will be June 1-5
    • Exams will be 45 minutes in length, and students will need to be ready for the exam 30 minutes before the start time.
    • Exams will be open book, open note; however, the questions will not be able to be answered by “looking up information”
  5. Teachers will have virtual office hours for students.  Teachers will set aside 2 hours per week where students know they can find them.  The teachers will communicate the times, and medium these will occur.  This doesn’t mean this will be the only time they are available for questions; rather, it is in addition to what teachers have been doing over the first two weeks of E-learning.  This is a valuable opportunity for students to practice time management and organizational skills.  If there are conflicts or challenges, students should reach out to teachers directly.
  6. As we use many virtual platforms, students should adhere to appropriate usage guidelines.  Teachers are providing instruction on how to use these platforms well.  A few quick reminders:
    • Students should be dressed appropriately for any online meeting or interaction
    • Students should be aware of their surroundings when they are in these meetings and make sure they are appropriate
    • Students should realize that teachers will regularly be available during business hours for questions and help. If students choose to work on their assignments late at night or at odd hours, they will need to wait until the next day to get questions or concerns addressed.
  7. Grades are able to be issued, and credit will be awarded for the work students are doing in classes.  At this point, we will continue to grade and assess students as we have been doing.  For students who are not turning in work, they will be issued a grade of INCOMPLETE and not receive credit for their class until the work is completed.  If students do not turn in work, they will receive a “0,” and the teacher will reach out to them.  Once they complete the work, the “0” will be removed, and they will get credit for their work.  For unresponsive students, teachers will contact parents and Student Services.
  8. Our schedule for April will be as follows:
    1. Week of April 6 – we will have school Monday-Thursday, and Friday will be off as we honor and take time to remember Good Friday.
    2. Week of April 13 – we will have a normal five-day week.
    3. Week of April 20 – Since Friday, April 24, was supposed to be a half-day for the teacher appreciation lunch, we will not have school at all on Friday. This will be a four-day week.
    4. Week of April 27 – we will have a normal five-day week.
  9. We will continue to have WAtv on Monday, Chapel Tuesday and Friday, and a Principal Address on Wednesday.  Additional school activities will be developed and promoted as the month continues.  We will communicate those via OnCampus, social media, and WA Weekly.
  10. As we walk through these circumstances, students will have a variety of reactions, including stress, anxiety, fear, and other negative emotions.  Wheaton Academy’s Student Services team is available and continuing to reach out to and help support students.  If you need to reach one of our staff members you can email:
    1. Hollee Ball (hball@wheatonacademy.org)
    2. Erin Carwell (ecarwell@wheatonacademy.org)
    3. Gina Churchill (gchurchill@wheatonacademy.org)
    4. Kermit Ellison (kellison@wheatonacademy.org)
    5. Bart Gregersen (bgregersen@wheatonacademy.org)They are continuing to provide academic and social-emotional support.  Additionally, our college counseling will continue during this time to help juniors and seniors navigate.
  11. Many of you have questions about upcoming events throughout the month of April and May.  At this point, we do not know what national, state, and local guidelines will be.  Be assured we are going to do everything we can when we are allowed to return to honor our students, specifically our seniors.  We will keep you posted on these developments.

None of us has ever done this before.  We are all going to do our best to handle this well.  We know that it is challenging to adapt to new circumstances, and we are all grieving the loss of what we thought this would be.  We are all experiencing disappointment and sadness.  Please encourage your student to reach out and ask for help, or even let us know if you are having a hard time.  We are here to support each other.

We can do this – one day at a time – TOGETHER.  I am claiming Philippians 4:19 for all of us, “And my God will supply every need of yours according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus.”

Watch my latest video message here:

Blessings,

Kori Hockett
Principal

Greetings Wheaton Academy Family,

I trust that even though circumstances are very different this Spring Break, you are still finding good – time with family, a chance to connect with the Lord, rest, chances to play games and other hobbies, and opportunities to refocus on what is important. As you have probably heard, President Trump and Governor Pritzker have extended the stay at home orders until April 30.

Wheaton Academy will continue our E-learning plan, and we are pleased to let you know that what we have been doing is in line with all of the state guidelines and recommendations. This will allow students to continue their education and to receive credit for these classes, ensuring that they will not fall behind when we return to school.  We are committed to supporting our students and families in their learning and their physical, emotional, and spiritual well-being.

Classes will resume on Monday, April 6, and lessons will be released at 9:00 a.m. We will be providing you more specific details and information about expectations and how we will support students through the duration of the E-learning time-period on Monday when we return.

Know that we are praying for you and your families as you navigate this difficult time.  We want to encourage you with Isaiah 43:1-2:

But now, this is what the Lord says— he who created you, Jacob,
he who formed you, Israel: “Do not fear, for I have redeemed you;
I have summoned you by name; you are mine.
When you pass through the waters, I will be with you;
And when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you.
When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned; the flames will not set you ablaze.

Blessings,

Kori Hockett
Principal

The past two weeks have been far different than I could have ever imagined. For each of our students, families, faculty, and staff, we have experienced ups and downs, and a whole host of emotions as we navigate this global crisis.  Here are a few pieces of information for you as we head into Spring Break next week:

  • While there will be no academic instruction and teachers will be observing Spring Break, as we walk through these circumstances, students will have a variety of reactions, including stress, anxiety, fear, and other negative emotions.  Wheaton Academy’s Student Services team is available and continuing to reach out to and help support students even during the upcoming Break. They are committed to helping you and your student if there is a need in the upcoming week and have created a resource packet for Spring Break you may view by clicking here. If you need to reach one of our staff members you can email:
  • At this point, we have not been made aware of any cases of COVID-19 in the Wheaton Academy community.  We are very thankful for this. Moving forward, should your student get sick, we want to encourage you to follow the protocols set out by the CDC and the DuPage County Health Department.
  • We will continue our current E-learning format on April 6-7.  At this point, we do not know what steps will be taken moving forward.  We are following the directives of local, state, and national officials. As we gain more information, we will let you know about what will happen after April 6-7.
  • Many of you have been in communication with teachers, staff members, and our administrative team.  We are so grateful for your partnership and communication.  After spring break, we will be sending out a short survey to get feedback on the E-learning experience.  In the meantime, please continue to reach out if you have questions, ideas, or concerns.
  • Here is a link to our E-learning update page.  This includes our chapels, video messages, WAtv episodes, the virtual coffee house, and various looks into what is happening in classes at Wheaton Academy during this time.
  • During this season of uncertainty, we want to stay connected through prayer. On this page, you can share your prayer requests with our community. Others can see your requests and will pray for you. Let’s lift one another up in prayer!

While I don’t want to sound like a broken record, I am so thankful for the Wheaton Academy community. In hard and challenging times, character is so often revealed. During these two weeks, I have seen our students and teachers care for one another, hold each other accountable, push each other to excellence, demonstrate incredible creativity, seek God, serve others, and work so hard to continue their learning. These moments have been such an encouragement to me, and I am so thankful for how we have come together to do very hard things. I want to leave you with Romans 15:13, “May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” Remember, we have something far better than optimism or positive thoughts. We have a hope in Jesus Christ that is unfailing and sure.  I trust that His hope will bring you the peace and joy you need today and in the upcoming week.

Kori Hockett
Principal

Dear Parents and Students of Wheaton Academy,

As we embark on our second week of E-learning at Wheaton Academy, I want to provide you with some information to help you navigate this week.

  • We will continue with our current E-learning format this week. Next week, there will be no classes or instruction as we will be observing Spring Break. Following Spring Break, we will return to E-learning for April 6-7.  The situation continues to evolve, and so we are monitoring it and working with our local and state officials.  We will keep you informed of any changes to this plan should they occur.
  • As a reminder, lessons will be posted at 9:00 a.m. each day, and we will follow our regular schedule with all classes Monday, Tuesday and Friday, and block day classes on Wednesday and Thursday.  We want to encourage you to take advantage of the times teachers are on “Zoom” and “Google Hangout” to help with the instruction and learning, and to keep you connected to others at the school.
  • We will continue to broadcast WAtv and Chapel throughout the week.  Also, Wednesday evening, we are going to be hosting a virtual coffeehouse showcasing students’ work.  Follow on social media (either Wheaton Academy or The Real WAtv) to stay connected.
  • On Friday, the College Board made the announcement that AP tests would be administered online.  Here is some of the information regarding AP tests we received directly from the College Board.  We will be working through these logistics and communicating with students as we get more information.
    • The AP Program will invest heavily over the next month in the following ways:
      • For the 2019–20 exam administration only, students can take a 45-minute online free-response exam at home. Educator-led development committees are currently selecting the exam questions that will be administered.
      • AP curricula are locally developed and we defer to local decisions on how best to help students complete coursework. To be fair to all students, some of whom have lost more instructional time than others, the exam will only include topics and skills most AP teachers and students have already covered in class by early March.
      • Colleges support this solution and are committed to ensuring that AP students receive the credit they have worked this year to earn. For decades, colleges have accepted a shortened AP Exam for college credit when groups of students have experienced emergencies.
      • Students will be able to take these streamlined exams on any device they have access to—computer, tablet, or smartphone. Taking a photo of handwritten work will also be an option.
  • As we walk through these circumstances, students will have a variety of reactions, including stress, anxiety, fear, and other negative emotions.  Wheaton Academy’s Student Services team is available and continuing to reach out to and help support students.  If you need to reach one of our staff members you can email:

They are continuing to provide academic and social-emotional support.  Additionally, our college counseling will continue during this time to help juniors and seniors navigate.

Over the weekend, as I kept hearing news reports and following on social media, the phrase “be positive” continued to be shared.  In times like this, it isn’t enough to be positive. Instead, we rely on the hope we have in Jesus Christ.  We know that as Paul said in 2 Corinthians 4:17-18:

For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all.So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.

Know that we are praying for you all, and we as a community are here to support you during this time.

Blessings,

Kori Hockett
Principal

Dear Wheaton Academy Parents & Students,

Some of you may have heard yesterday that Governor Pritzker announced that school closures from today through March 30 would be considered “Act of God” days, meaning they wouldn’t need to be made up at the end of the school year and e-learning was not a required component of the closures.

We understand that some schools may need this sort of flexibility because they do not have the resources necessary to provide high-quality e-learning. We are blessed to have been doing e-learning since 2014, and we are thankful for the opportunities we have had over that time to understand what type of learning experience we can provide when we are not able to be on campus.

Therefore, we are going to continue to use whatever time we have away from campus as wisely and as effectively as possible. God has given us the resources, the materials, and the highly committed teachers to create great learning experiences for the days ahead.  We are also committed to ensuring that our students are well-prepared for the upcoming AP exams and other high-stakes tests like the ACT and SAT that our students will take in the near future. Thus, school at Wheaton Academy will continue in an e-learning platform even though the state of Illinois does not require it. We believe that this is the level of excellence and stewardship our community is called to at this time. Thank you all for the role that each parent and student plays in keeping schoolwork a high priority during this time.

God’s blessings to each of you as we continue to partner together.

Sincerely,
Steve Bult
Head of School

Dear Parents and Students of Wheaton Academy,

It is so comforting that in difficult times like the ones we are in, we are able to rest in the hope and assurance that we have in Jesus Christ. The peace and hope that is ours as children of God is so real in these days. We want to encourage our community to stay grounded in the truth during these upcoming weeks. We need to continue to support one another and stay connected, even though that looks different right now. Wheaton Academy is here to support you, as students and families during this uncertain time.

As we begin a new paradigm for our learning over the next two weeks, we wanted to provide you with some information to help you navigate what off-campus learning, which is now called “E-learning” will look like. We are grateful that Wheaton Academy has been doing off-campus learning/E-learning for many years, and our faculty are already working on creative and engaging ways to ensure that learning continues during this time:

  • Students should use their OnCampus accounts to get information and expectations for their classes each day. The requirement by the state for all E-learning is that students will engage in about five hours of instruction and activities each day. At Wheaton Academy, we have instructed teachers to provide between 45-60 minutes of learning for each class. This will look different in different classes, but your teachers have been preparing and planning to make these times meaningful for you.
  • Our schedule will remain the same, so students should plan on having each class 4 out of 5 days, and Wednesday and Thursday, the learning time will be longer than Monday, Tuesday, and Friday.
  • Lessons and learning experiences will be released one day at a time each day, beginning at 9:00 a.m. Today, Monday, March 16, will be a transition day, and while there will be a lesson, teachers are going to work with students to help them get used to a new way of learning.
  • Students will be able to engage with the content at their own pace and at the time of their choice. Teachers will be available to provide support and answer questions throughout the day. They will communicate with students on a class by class basis of what that will look like. Typically, teachers will be most available during the day from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
  • There will still be assignments – including tests and quizzes. Teachers will work with students, set expectations and due dates as well as provide support during this time.
  • It will be critical for students to communicate with their teachers – they can use the messaging feature in OnCampus as well as other means that teachers will set up for classes, as they use many resources to help students learn in this different format.
  • Remember, one of our goals is to prepare students with the College and Life readiness traits they will need, and social intelligence and self-advocacy are an important part of that. Please encourage your student to be proactive, ask questions, tell their teachers when they need help – and let them do the communicating. This time will be a great opportunity to develop that skill.
  • Wheaton Academy will continue to release chapels. Our goal is to provide a virtual chapel experience during the week. You and your student can watch this together. This week, our first chapel will be released on Tuesday, March 17.
  • Students with a study lab or other tutoring experience can continue that in an E-learning way. Their teachers will be in contact with them, as well.
  • One way for us to live out God’s call of loving our neighbor is to honor the idea that this time is for social distancing. You have no doubt seen many articles on what this means, and we want to do our part in this community effort. We have communicated with teachers and staff that we will not be meeting with students in person. Any communication with a teacher should take place virtually.
  • Driver’s Ed through Excel driving school will not meet on campus. Please contact Excel directly for information on how they will proceed moving ahead.
  • Because this situation is rapidly changing, we will be in communication with the College Board and the ACT to find out information about what will happen with upcoming testing this spring.

If you have individual questions about a specific class, please contact your student’s teacher. We will also be happy to provide answers to questions and support as well. Each of our departments will be considering how to continue to help families during this time, so keep watch for updates and communication on what that will look like. We are continually monitoring the developments of what is happening and will consider upcoming April events as we get more information.

We know that this is an uncertain time, and in those times, we all want answers. We all desire to know what is coming next. And yet, right now, we don’t have those answers. But we do have a God who does know, and He is faithful in all things and at all times. We want to leave you with Psalm 91:

Whoever dwells in the shelter of the Most High
will rest in the shadow of the Almighty.
I will say of the Lord, “He is my refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust.”
Surely he will save you from the fowler’s snare and from the deadly pestilence.
He will cover you with his feathers, and under his wings you will find refuge; his faithfulness will be your shield and rampart.
You will not fear the terror of night, nor the arrow that flies by day,
nor the pestilence that stalks in the darkness, nor the plague that destroys at midday.
A thousand may fall at your side, ten thousand at your right hand, but it will not come near you.
You will only observe with your eyes and see the punishment of the wicked.
If you say, “The Lord is my refuge,” and you make the Most High your dwelling, no harm will overtake you, no disaster will come near your tent.
For he will command his angels concerning you to guard you in all your ways; they will lift you up in their hands, so that you will not strike your foot against a stone.
You will tread on the lion and the cobra; you will trample the great lion and the serpent.
“Because he loves me,” says the Lord, “I will rescue him; I will protect him, for he acknowledges my name.
He will call on me, and I will answer him; I will be with him in trouble,
I will deliver him and honor him.
With long life I will satisfy him and show him my salvation.

We are so thankful for the Wheaton Academy community. The students, teachers, and families have risen up and responded so well to these unprecedented times, and that is a blessing.

Gratefully,
Kori Hockett
Principal, Wheaton Academy

Dear Parents of the Wheaton Academy Community,

In light of the rapidly evolving situation regarding COVID-19 and recommendations from public health officials, Wheaton Academy is closing the building to students beginning today, March 13, 2020 at 3 pm until Sunday, April 5.  All after school practices and activities today will be cancelled.  As of today, we don’t have any cases of COVID-19 in the Wheaton Academy community. However, we believe this action is prudent and responsible.

We will be moving to an E-learning situation for the weeks of March 16-20 and March 23-27.  Wheaton Academy has had our E-learning plan submitted to and approved by the Regional Office of Education.  We will use our learning management system to provide for the continuity of instruction.  Students will be receiving specific instructions on Monday, March 16.  During this time, we will not have any on-campus activities, including co-curricular, athletics, or any other events.

We will begin the implementation of E-learning on Monday, March 16.  We are thankful that we have been doing E-learning in a variety of forms for years, and our students are used to this process.  Our teachers are also well prepared to ensure that learning can continue during this time.

We will continue to work with local health officials to monitor any changes or additional time that we may remain closed.  At this time, we hold on to the fact that we serve a God who is not surprised or overwhelmed by these circumstances; instead, He is Sovereign and in control. We understand this situation is challenging, and we appreciate your understanding and support during this time.

Blessings,

Steve Bult
Head of School

Kori Hockett
Principal

Steve Karlson
COO/CFO

As we consider the COVID-19 global pandemic, we are committed to staying informed and keeping our community safe.  We are committed to acting in an abundance of caution, and we will make decisions in the best interest of all in our community.  Today, we participated in a call with the DuPage County Department of Health, the DuPage County Regional Office of Education and other school districts in the county.  Currently, there are no confirmed cases of COVID-19 in DuPage county or with any Wheaton Academy student.  However, with the number of cases across the state and region increasing, and in light of the communication we have had with the DuPage Country Health Department, we are taking the following measures to reduce the spread of illness throughout our community:

  • The senior trip scheduled for next week will be postponed if we can find a later date. We are working with Joshua Expeditions to try to reschedule the this trip if possible later this spring.
  • The spring break trip for international students is cancelled.
  • All field trips are cancelled.
  • Athletic practices and competitions may continue as planned
  • We will continue to have chapel and community time, but these events may take an alternative form, including watching from classroom locations.
  • We are cancelling all rentals and activities from outside groups.
  • Willow Creek church will continue to rent our Fine Arts Center space only and will do a cleaning after using the space. After tomorrow’s chapel, Wheaton Academy will not use the auditorium until after Spring Break.  Classes will continue in the basement of the Fine Arts Center.

We are also continuing to prepare for the possibility for E-learning and have had our E-learning plan certified by the Regional Office of Education.  Additionally, if your student or family has concerns about attending school due to being part of a vulnerable population, we will work with you to provide continuing education.

In addition, we are reminding all students, staff and faculty, that if traveling to any area listed on the CDC Travel Advisories with a Level 2 or above Travel Notice that those individuals are asked to stay home and self-quarantine for 14 days following their return.

If we do have a confirmed case of COVID-19 at Wheaton Academy, we will close school for a minimum of 24 hours.  At that point, the DCHD would help to assist the situation, evaluate our cleaning and disinfection practices, and reduce the risk and vulnerability to students.  We would then work on a plan to move forward.  As for now, school will remain open and we will continue our cleaning and disinfection practices as directed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.  We will revisit these protocols as necessary.  As we receive new information, we will send it to you as soon as we can.

While these are unprecedented times, we know God is sovereign.  We trust His goodness in this uncertain time.  We thank you for your patience and understanding as we work through this situation together.