School Update – February 2022 

By Tina Jenkins Bell 
BAPA School Liaison 

Who would have thought that in February 2022 the pandemic would still be flipping our lives inside out? I certainly did not, particularly after advances like the various vaccines. Knowing us to be a caring community, I thought to myself if we all contribute to our community’s overall public health then COVID 19 would be no more than a bad dream.  

Of course, COVID is hanging on, like the houseguest who won’t go home. Beyond our due diligence to wear masks, get vaccinated, social distance, consistently wash hands, be supportive of each other, share resources, stay aware, and breathe, what more can we do, you ask. I have a few answers. 

Our Schools Need Substitute Teachers… 

All of our schools desperately need substitute teachers. If you are a recent college graduate, a retiree, or a professional wishing to transition careers, substitute teaching could be right for you. It’s simple to apply. Start with submitting your undergrad transcripts and completing an Illinois State Board of Education online application (which requires a $50 fee). If you have the time and inclination, consider it. Visit the Illinois State Board of Education website at and search “substitute teachers” for more information. 

Our Families Need You… 

I’m sure you’ve heard the stories of families vying to support their children emotionally and financially. To deal with the uncertainties of COVID, some people created pods of safety-minded, trustworthy, and supportive families. When remote instruction was the rule, these pods were a way for families to depend on each other for safe, small group educational support and socialization. I’m told some of these pods are still active. Consider becoming a part of or creating a pod that is intergenerational, including retirees who are available, vaccinated and boosted, and open to participating under circumstances that are safe for everyone. 

BAPA Needs You… 

BAPA’s Volunteer Tutor Corps is active and looking for people who are available to tutor students in reading, math, science, handwriting and hand manipulation, and the languages (particularly Spanish and French). All tutoring occurs remotely and is offered to families free of charge. If you can tutor or if your child needs tutoring, contact me at   

Community Soup for Clissold School 

A line-up of amazing people are making soup for pick-up Sat., Feb. 12, 12 to 5 p.m. at City Grange, 1818 W. 99th St. 100% of the proceeds will benefit Clissold School. Find details and place your order at 






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