Dear Parents and/or Guardians,

We would like to update you on the progress of the Junior High Math Program for the 2014-2015 school year. 

First of all, we welcomed Mrs. Sarah Cacciatore as our new Curriculum Director the first week in July.  Since that time the administrative team and Junior High math teachers have been very busy.  If you were present at the July Board of Education meeting, you were able to hear first hand of the adjustments that will be made to the math curriculum for the upcoming school year.  Those documents are available for viewing by visiting the BoardBook link on the school website.

As with any curriculum change, modifications and adjustments are made to improve student learning as implementation evolves. This year is no exception.  The math department constantly seeks to improve their instructional practices to increase student learning. 

After completing a full year of sole CPM implementation, we intended to determine areas to focus additional instructional minutes in order to address the foundational principals students need to be successful as they transition into their high school experience.  For example, a teacher may determine that students need some foundational support in place value before beginning a unit on proportions.  This time set aside to support foundational skills will only increase student learning when beginning new content. This is only one example of the work we have been completing this summer.

Mrs. Cacciatore and the administrative team support the use of the best resources available.  This means we will be looking to supplement the CPM text with additional resources to meet the specific needs of Oak Grove students.  These resources will be reflected in the newly developed Scope & Sequence documents the math teachers have worked on this summer.  Some of you may be familiar with a curriculum map from other districts, a scope and sequence is similar.  It is a document that reflects the specific learning targets students will be expected to learn in a given unit, the length of time dedicated to those skills, instructional strategies the teachers will utilize, resources shared and assessments given. 

We have been working diligently this summer to prepare a Scope and Sequence for math grades 6, 7, and 8 for the entire year.  These Scope and Sequence documents will be posted to the website prior to the start of the school year under the curriculum page of the Oak Grove website. In addition, you will be able to see the gradual release model that the teachers will be using to guide their daily instruction. 

Specifically, during the board presentation in July and follow up work with the Junior High math team, the structure of a daily class was discussed using the Gradual Release Model.  Below are the specific adjustments that will be in place for the upcoming school year: 

  •           Formal Opening - Class Starter
  •          Introduction to Lesson
  •         Teacher Circulation during Collaboration
  •         Formal Closing

For additional details of the class period, please see additional attachment.  You will notice there is no time identified with each of the components.  This is intentional to allow the teacher to assess the students’ needs on a daily basis and provide the appropriate amount of attention to the needs of the students on a given day.  This flexibility in the model allows teachers to provide more or less direct instruction based on the students’ needs, students’ understanding, and the skills being covered within a class period.   However, we do know there will be more direct instructional minutes than previously provided.

As an administrative team, we have had the opportunity to meet with some parents of Junior High students to discuss more specifically the changes for the Junior High math program for the upcoming year.  These conversations have been helpful and informative.

Mrs. Cacciatore and Mr. Karolewicz are more than willing meet with any parent interested in learning more about the changes.  Please email us or contact us at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

We are excited by the enthusiasm shown by the Junior High math teachers as they have worked with us to improve the student learning experience for the 2014-2015 school year.   As always, it is our objective to enhance an already quality program at Oak Grove!



Dr. Lonny Lemon, Sarah Cacciatore, and Dave Karolewicz

Camp Duncan Trip for 7th Grade

Each year, the seventh grade team takes two trips to Camp Duncan.  Please download the information packet below.  You are asked to fill out and return the required forms by August 25th.  The date of the first trip is Thursday, August 28th from 9 am to 9pm.  The cost is $50.00.  If you have any questions after reviewing the information packet, you may contact Barb Banduch or Erin Smith for additional info.


Summer Renovation Update & Videos

The administrative team at Oak Grove hopes you and your families are enjoying a wonderful summer break.  If you have driven by the school, it is not hard to notice that there appears to be a lot of activity occurring both inside and outside of the school building!

With just over a month remaining before the start of school, I thought I would give you a short update on what has been going on this summer.  We are in the midst of our third consecutive year of renovation at Oak Grove.  This summer we are renovating our 4th grade classrooms, the small gym, several faculty and student washrooms, relocating our administrative and maintenance offices, and creating a new professional development training room.  These areas include some of the original building, dating back to the mid-1950’s.  Updates include new lighting, cabinetry, flooring, and heating and cooling, to name a few.  Similar renovations were made last summer and greatly improved our teaching and learning environment at Oak Grove.  We are confident we will see the same results after this year’s renovations.

Outside, you may have noticed we have completely demolished and removed the elementary playground through the joint efforts of the PTO, Oak Grove Education Foundation, and Board of Education.  Installation is nearing completion and we hope to dedicate the new playground near the end of July.  We will also be removing the wood chip surface on the Junior High playground and replacing it with rubber mulch. 

Mr. Oswaldo Suarez, our Maintenance Director, has been taking video of the renovation project since we started. We are grateful to have such a dedicated community and Board of Education that allows us to constantly make a better place to educate our students.  In the very near future, we will have one of the finest facilities, containing state of the art technology, in all of Lake County. YOU CAN CLICK HERE to see the progress of the renovations as time has passed.  Enjoy!


With Oak Grove pride,
Lonny B. Lemon, Ed.D.

Incoming 8th Grade Parents - Letter From LHS

Dear Parents and Guardians,

Please read the letter below from District 128 if your child will be in 8th grade during the 2014-2015 school year. 

David Karolewicz
5-8 Principal/Transportation Coordinator
Oak Grove School

LHS Letter

Important Dates for 2014-15

Parents, please CLICK HERE for a list of important dates for the 2014-15 school year.

Kindergarten Registration 2014-15

If you have a student that will attend Kindergarten in 2014-15 and you have not already shared your intformation with us, please call Debi Shaffer ASAP at 847-367-4120 ext. 2008


If you have not completed the online registration for your returning student, please do so now.  CLICK HERE TO START.

From the Director of Curriculum

Hello Oak Grove Community!  I hope this message finds you well as you enjoy your summer.  Since becoming your new curriculum director, I have been meeting with the administrative team to familiarize myself with the systems and procedures that are currently in place.  In addition, I have started meeting staff and board members in order to prepare for what I'm sure will be an outstanding school year. It is a true joy to be joining the Oak Grove community, assisting Dr. Lemon, and supporting the staff here at OG, as we collaborate in providing a high-quality educational experience for every student.

In the next few weeks, I will begin posting informational blurbs and sample problems related to the Common Core standards on the Oak Grove website  in an effort to keep our community current as we continue our transition to the new expectations.  There will also be a Frequently Asked Questions section.  If you should have a question related to the CCSS, please do not hesitate to share it with me, as additional parents might have a similar question.

I have been very grateful for  the warm welcome that I received thus far and sincerely look forward to meeting more staff throughout the rest of the summer and start of the school year.  I am confident and excited to be part of such a great team!

Please feel free to stop by and say hello, my door is always open :)

Sarah Cacciatore


Welcome Oak Grove's New Director of Curriculum

Oak Grove would like to introduce and welcome Mrs. Sarah Cacciatore to our family.  Sarah will begin her duties as Director of Curriculum in early July.  Sarah was selected for this position from a pool of over 90 candidates.  Currently, she is completing her duties as Director of Curriculum and Assessment for Troy CCSD 30, located in Plainfield, IL.

Sarah earned a B.A. in Biology, with minors in Psychology and Physical Sciences, from National Louis University.  She earned her M.A. in Education from Roosevelt University and is expecting to complete her Doctorate from Northern Illinois University in December of 2015.

Bridges "Talking Points"

The Oak Grove Board of Education at its May 8th special meeting formally adopted “Bridges in Mathematics” as the district’s formal curriculum for grades K-5.  District administration and teachers gave an in-depth presentation to the Board in support of “Bridges.”

The curriculum is produced by the Math Learning Center (MLC), which is a non-profit organization.  You can learn more about the MLC at mathlearningcenter.org

Leave Your Mark at Oak Grove

Our children's memories of their time at Oak Grove will last a lifetime, so take this opportunity to leave a permanent mark with a custom brick paver and support innovative curriculum enhancements for your children at the same time!  CLICK HERE FOR MORE INFO!


Our thanks to the OGSEF and the members of their Business Partner Program