School Handbook 2018

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Academic Eligibility

Accidents and Illness


All School Rules


Arrival / Dismissal



Big Three Rules

Bikes Etc.

Boys' Uniform




Cell Phones

Change of Address

Child Abuse

Child Custody and Guardianship       

Christian Initiation Policy

Code of Conduct

Club Policy




Crossing Guards

Dental Exam


Discipline Cycle

Discipline Philosophy

Discipline Steps


Emergency Closing

Extended Absence

Extended Day Program

Field Trips







Fires and Tornados

Forgotten Items


Girls' Uniform

Grade Scales


Gym Clothing


Health Requirements


Homework Guidelines

Homework Policy

Homework Room

Honor Roll

Illinois School Code


Internet Policy

Internet Posting

Internet Terms and Conditions          



Lost and Found


Mandated Reporting

Medical Objections


Missed Time

Missed Work


Non-Custodial Parents

Out of Uniform Appearance

Out of Uniform Consequences



Posting Grades

Preschool Schedule





Progress Reports

Promotion and Retention

Protecting Children

Public Scandal

Release During the Day

Report Cards


School Medications

School Program


Sexual Harassment

Shadow Days


Standardized Testing

Student Life

Substance Abuse




Technology Inside the School

Technology Outside the School

Tornado Warnings



Virtus Training

Vision Examinations

Visitors and Building Security




Web site


Uniform Code

Uniform Guidelines

Uniform Ordering













































Archdiocese of Chicago Office of Catholic Schools - Educational Policy Manual of the Office of Catholic Schools
Ascension School operates under the auspices of the Archdiocese of Chicago. As such, the school administration, faculty and governance board implement and follow all policies and procedures promulgated by the Archdiocese and the Office of Catholic Schools outlined in the Educational Policy Manual of the Office of Catholic Schools.  Local school policies and procedures found in the Ascension School Handbook 2018 are additional directives developed to govern the local needs of the school and may not contradict Archdiocese or Office of Catholic Schools directives.

The School Program



A tentative calendar for the school year is posted on the school’s web site Monthly calendars are sent home via email in the Weekly Mailing and are also posted on the web site.



School is in session from 8:00 AM to 3:00 p.m. for grades Kindergarten through Grade 8.   On scheduled half days, school ends at 11:45 AM


8:00 AM         First AM Bell

8:05 AM         AM Tardy Bell

11:05 AM       Lunch Period 5

11:55 AM       Lunch Period 6

12:40 PM       First PM Bell

12:45 PM       PM Tardy Bell

3:00 PM         Dismissal


Preschool Schedule

Preschool classes meet on specific days of the week depending on the session.

School is in session from 9:00 AM to 11:40 AM for AM PK-3, PK-4.

School is in session from 12:20 PM to 3:00 PM for PM PK-3, PK-4, and Multi-age Preschool..



School attendance is compulsory in the State of Illinois. The responsibility for compliance with the law belongs to the parents/guardians for children 6 through 16 years of age.

The school is responsible for keeping an accurate record of the each student’s daily attendance.

The Archdiocese of Chicago attendance record is placed in the student’s permanent file each school year.


Arrival/Dismissal Procedures

The children are asked to come to school no sooner than 10 minutes before the bell.  Students should wait in the area designated for their class. Students line up single file by Homeroom.

Students may only be in the building early if prior arrangements with the teacher have been made.  Students who are in the building before regular arrival or after dismissal must be under a teacher’s supervision.

Students may arrive early for study sessions or other work with the supervising teacher's permission. If younger siblings accompany the student, siblings must be in the same room as the student until dismissed to line up at 7:50 or to their classroom at 8:00.

Unless in the Extended Day Program, at a scheduled school activity or special circumstances arise, all students are expected to be off the school grounds by 3:15 PM. Students still at school at 3:15 will be taken to the office to await pick-up. Students will not be allowed to wait in the school lobby.

Students must be under adult supervision at all times when in the school building and gymnasium. Students attending extracurricular events should be in the care of their parent, guardian or a designated adult.

Students who are being dismissed at a time other than the regular school dismissal time must have a written request from the parent/guardian.  No student will be permitted to leave school without a written request.  Parents/guardians must come into the school office to meet the child and to sign the child out of the office.  Upon return to school that same day, children must check in at the office. Students who arrive late to school due to a scheduled medical appointment must sign in at the school office.


Inclement Weather

When the weather is excessively cold, rainy or snowy, the Administration may open the Pine Room for morning supervision starting at 7:50. Students have designated areas in which to wait.



If your child will be absent from school, please call the school office at 708-386-7282 before 7:30 and leave a message including the reason for the absence. Parents/guardians requesting homework for the absent child must do so at this time. Requests cannot be accepted during the school day.   

In the case of a contagious illness, the child should bring a doctor’s note upon his/her return.


Extended Absence

If parents/guardians wish to take the children out of school for a period of time because of family plans, the parents/guardians, principal, and teacher shall discuss the possible effect of the absence on the student’s schoolwork.  The recommendations shall be documented.  The final decision, however, shall be the responsibility of the parent/guardian.



If a student is absent without an excuse, or if the school has reason to suspect the validity of the excuse, the principal shall investigate the situation and apply appropriate remedies.  If all efforts to persuade the child to return to school are fruitless, the case shall be referred to the appropriate official of the public school district.



Punctuality is a habit all students should acquire, a responsibility shared by families.  Parents will be contacted when students are chronically tardy. Students who are not in homeroom at 8:05 AM are tardy. Students who arrive after 8:05 AM should stop at the office. Junior high students who arrive tardy to classes may be given a consequence by the teacher which may include a short detention.


Excessive Time Missed

Excessive absences and chronic tardiness seriously disrupt the learning process.  When our records indicate a pattern of poor attendance or tardiness, the parent(s) will be informed.  If no improvement is made, the parent will be required to come to school for a conference to discuss the problem where solutions will be presented.  Said solutions will not be limited to after school make-up and/or summer school.

Release of Student from School / Doctor/Dentist Appointments

Children must have a written request to be excused during the school day, and must be signed out by the parent/guardian.     Please make doctor and dental appointments after school hours if at all possible in order to prevent a disruption of the student’s school day.

Release of a Child to Non-Custodial Parent

A court order is required to prevent a non-custodial parent access to the child or to school visitation rights. This includes the release of the child to the non-custodial parent in addition to school visitation rights.

If it is determined by the school that the custodial parent may not be expecting release of the child to the non-custodial parent, it is imperative that the school contact the custodial parent. The custodial parent is to be informed immediately that the non-custodial parent is requesting release of the child.

The school should never release a child to a non-custodial parent if there are concerns regarding the child’s welfare and safety. In such cases, the non-custodial parent may be denied access to the child. If necessary, local law enforcement should be contacted.



Students in Grades 1 – 6 have weekly access to Ascension’s Library. Students may check out books for one week.  Materials should be returned on the due date; lost materials are subject to fines or replacement fees.


Lunch Program

Ascension School provides lunchroom facilities for its students.  Students must wear gym shoes to lunch. Students are expected to follow all lunchroom rules, which are posted and discussed on the first day of school.  If a student forgets lunch, a sandwich will be provided.  Parents who drop off a lunch should leave it at the school office. “Fast food” is strongly discouraged. Please refer to our Wellness Policy.

Ascension School allows students to be released from school for parents who want their children to come home during the lunch period.  Ascension School assumes no liability for these children during the lunch period.  Ascension School strongly recommends that all students be supervised by an adult when they are off-campus for lunch. No supervision is provided for students returning at lunch.

At the beginning of each school year, parents shall indicate which day(s) their children will be staying for lunch and sign a form for the day(s) on which they want their children released.  Any changes from this lunch period schedule must be received in writing each day that change is to be made.                                         Board policy # 99-12-13


Extended Day

Ascension School has an Extended Day Program for registered students.  This program operates all day from 7 AM to 6 PM on all open school days.  A non-refundable registration fee is paid at the time of school registration.  Please see the Extended Day Handbook for further information.



Health & Safety


Health Requirements

Schools in the Archdiocese follow the guidelines set forth by the City of Chicago, Cook County and Lake County Health Departments and the State of Illinois.

All children in Illinois shall present proof of having had a health examination and received such immunizations against preventable communicable diseases as required by the Department of Public Health. These records are to be presented to the school before the first day of school. 

If a child is not in compliance with the health and immunizations requirements by the first day of school, the principal shall exclude the child from school until the child presents proof of having had the health examination and presents proof of having received required immunizations.

Health Examinations and Proof of Immunization

All children in Illinois shall have a health examination as follows:

  • immediately prior to or upon entrance into any public, private or parochial pre-school or transferring from outside of the State of Illinois,


  • prior to entering kindergarten or the first grade,


  • upon entering sixth and ninth grades.


Dental Examinations

All children in kindergarten and the second and sixth grades shall have a dental examination by a licensed dentist. Parents/guardians are to be reminded of this requirement 60 days before May 15 of each school year. Parents/Guardians seeking an exemption to this requirement must submit the Dental Examination Waiver Form, provided by the State of Illinois Department of Public Health, to the school administrator.


Vision Examinations

State law requires that all children enrolling in public, private or parochial for the first time or entering kindergarten school shall have an eye exam. Parents/Guardians are to be notified of this requirement.

Proof of having been examined by a physician licensed to practice medicine in all its branches or a licensed optometrist is to be submitted to the school. Report cards may be held if the student is not in compliance with this regulation.

This requirement may be waived for those families who show an undue burden or a lack of access to a physician licensed to practice medicine or to a licensed optometrist.


Medical Objections
  • The Physician Statement of Immunity must be attached to the Certificate of Child Health Examination form.


  • Questions regarding medical exemptions should be directed to the Regional Immunization Representative or the Illinois Department of Public Health Immunization Section at 217-785-1455.


Religious Objection to Immunization and Vision Examination


  • Under Illinois law, a religious objection to immunizations or vision examinations must be in writing and must set forth the specific religious belief which conflicts with each immunization or examination.


  • It is the responsibility of the Archdiocese of Chicago, as the local authority, to determine whether the written statement constitutes a valid religious objection


  • The written objection to immunization or the vision examination must be sent to the appropriate assistant superintendent so a determination can be made as to whether the objection is valid under Illinois law.


The written objection must be submitted to the school administrator by the parent or legal guardian. No student whose parent or legal guardian has asserted a religious objection may be allowed in school until a determination has been made as to the validity of the religious objection.

The parent or legal guardian must be informed by the local school authority of a measles outbreak control exclusion procedure with the Department’s rules, Control of Communicable Diseases Code (77 III. Adm. Code 690) at the time such objection is presented.

State of Illinois Eye Examination, Dental Examinations and waiver forms are available online:

A copy of the State of Illinois Eye Examination Report can be accessed at:

A copy of the Eye Examination Waiver can be accessed at:

A copy of the Dental Examination Form can be accessed at:

A copy of the Dental Waiver Form can be accessed at:


Wellness Policy

Schools of the Archdiocese of Chicago are committed to providing a learning environment that supports and promotes wellness, good nutrition, and an active lifestyle. It recognizes the positive relationship between good nutrition, physical activity and the capacity of students to develop and learn. The complete Wellness Policy, including Goals, guidelines and attachments, is available on the Forms page of the school web site


Child Abuse

The Archdiocese of Chicago shall follow the Illinois Abused and Neglected Child Reporting Act and Archdiocesan procedures when allegations and/or suspicions of child abuse are made against Archdiocesan personnel.

Allegations/Suspicion of Child Abuse or Neglect by School Personnel

Archdiocese of Chicago documents related to Child Abuse Allegations by School Personnel are under revision. In the meantime, the principal must contact the Office of Catholic Schools immediately when an allegation is made about a school employee or volunteer. The principal will be directed regarding the steps that must be taken to report the allegation or suspicion of child abuse to the appropriate Archdiocesan agency and to civil authorities.

The Illinois Child Abuse and Neglect Reporting Act mandates that school personnel report alleged or suspected child abuse and/or neglect to the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS) when the alleged abuser is a parent, guardian, relative, or other caretaker who has some responsibility for the child’s welfare at the time of the abuse of neglect.

Illinois law requires school personnel to notify DCFS even if there is a suspicion of child abuse or neglect. Thus, the school professional need not have proof or convincing evidence of the abuse; merely suspicion of abuse make a call to DCFS necessary. Furthermore, Illinois law protects school professionals from litigation if the DCFS call was made in good faith.


Mandated Reporting (CANTS)

All school personnel including administration and both certified and non-certified staff must contact the Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS) when they have reasonable cause to believe that a child who is seventeen years of age or younger whom they know in their professional capacity has been harmed or is in danger of being harmed – physically, sexually, or through neglect – and that a caregiver either committed the harm or should have taken steps to protect the child from harm. This call must be made immediately and no one in the workplace is permitted to restrain the call. It is not sufficient to make the report only to the principal or school nurse. The mandated reporter must be certain that the call has been made.


  • All Mandated Reporters are required to complete the CANTS 22 form acknowledging an understanding of the reporting requirements.
  • All Mandated Reporters are required to complete the CANTS 5 form Written Confirmation of Suspected Child Abuse/Neglect Report: Mandated Reporters when reporting an allegation or suspicion of child abuse or neglect.


Child Abuse and Neglect Tracking System (CANTS) forms are available on the Department of Children and Family Services Web site under “Forms.”


Accidents and Illness

When a student becomes ill or is injured at school, the principal shall take appropriate, immediate action including contact with the parents/guardian. If the illness or injury occurs off school grounds, the school administrator must also be notified immediately.

  • Medical and Emergency Notification Information and Authorization for Medical Treatment form shall be on file for each student. The record should include name, address, and phone number of the family physician, and authorization for the school administration to request transportation to a hospital for an injured or seriously ill student.


  • If the parent/guardian or emergency contact person cannot be reached, the administrator calls the police or paramedics and places the matter in their hands. A school representative should accompany the student to the hospital.


School Medication Procedures

Parents/guardians have the primary responsibility for the administration of medication to their children. The administration of medication to students during regular school hours and during school related activities is discouraged unless necessary for the critical health and well being of the student. Teachers, administrator and administrative staff shall not administer medication to students except as provided in these School Medication Procedures.


  1. Administration. No school personnel shall administer any prescription or non-prescription medicine unless the School has the student’s current and complete Medication Authorization Form approved and signed by the School Principal.


    • A Medication Authorization Form is distributed for each student at the beginning of each school year or enrollment of a new student during the year. Medication Authorization Forms are available in the school office.


    • The School retains the right to deny requests to administer medication to the students provided that such denial is indicated on the Medication Authorization Form. If the School denies a request and authorization for the administration of medication, parents/guardians must make other arrangements for the administration of medication to students, such as arranging for medication to be administered before or after school or having the parent/guardian or designee administer the medication in school.


    • Self-Administration. A student may self-administer medication at school if so ordered by his or her licensed prescriber per the student’s current and completed Medication Authorization Form. Students who suffer from asthma, allergies or other conditions that require the immediate use of medication shall be permitted to carry such medication and to self-administer such medication without supervision by school personnel only if the School has on file for the student a current and completed Medication Authorization Form. Otherwise, such medication must be stored in a locked cabinet under the control of the School and the self-administration of medication shall be under the supervision of the School.


  2. Appropriate Containers. It is the responsibility of the parent/guardian to provide the School with all medication in appropriate containers that are:
    • Prescription-labeled by a pharmacy or licensed prescriber (displaying prescription number, student name, medication, dosage, direction for administration, date and refill schedule, pharmacy label, and name/initials of pharmacist) or


    • Manufacturer-labeled for non-prescription over-the-counter medication.


  3. Storage of Medication. Medication received by the School in accordance with a completed Medication Authorization Form and in an appropriate container shall be stored in a locked cabinet. Access to the locked cabinet shall be limited to the School Principal, his/her designees, and the school nurse (if applicable).


  4. Medication requiring refrigeration shall be stored in a refrigerator that cannot be accessed by students and shall be kept separate from food items. At the end of the school year, or the end of the treatment regime, the student’s parent/ guardian will be responsible for removing any unused medication from the school. If the parent/guardian does not pick up the medication by the end of the school year, the School will appropriately discard the medication.
  5. Ascension School has notified parents and guardians in writing the per 105 ILCS 5/22 – 30 ( c ), the school and school personnel incur no liability for injuries occurring when administering asthma medication, an epinephrine auto-injector, or an opioid antagonist, and that the parents or guardians must sign a statement acknowledging this protection.


Alcoholic Beverages

Ascension School prohibits adult consumption of alcoholic beverages during working hours and at all school sponsored events/activities on and off campus where children are present.


Substance Abuse

The principal, with appropriate consultation, shall develop local policies and procedures regarding student substance abuse, use of alcohol, and possession of weapons.

Substance is defined as illegal drugs and drug paraphernalia, anabolic steroids, tobacco, chemicals, inhalants, solvents, prescription or over-the-counter drugs used for purposes other than those for which they are indicated or in a manner or in quantities other than directed.

Substance abuse means the consumption or use of any substance for purposes other than the treatment of sickness or injury as prescribed or administered by a person duly authorized by law to treat sick and injured human beings.

Illegal Violations: The possession, use, delivery, transfer, or sale of tobacco, alcohol, drug paraphernalia, illicit substances, chemical or any substance designed to look like or represented as such by students, on school premises, in school buildings, on school buses, or at school-sanctioned events is expressly forbidden.


School Procedures for Handling Violations:


  • Notify the parent/guardian and suspend the student during the school investigation.
  • Conference with principal, parent/guardian, student, pastor, and other appropriate persons as determined by the principal.
  • Notifies the municipal police department or the office of the county sheriff or verified incidents involving drugs occurring in a school, on the real property comprising any school, on a public was within 1,000 feet of a school, or in any conveyance owned, leased, or contracted by a school to transport students to or from school or a school related activity within 48 hours of becoming aware of the incident; and,
  •  Notifies the Illinois State Police of such incidents through the School Incident Reporting System (SIRS).

  • If the violation is founded, professional evaluation and, if necessary, treatment shall be provided by the parent/guardian.
  • Based on the results of the certified clinical evaluation, the status of the student for continued attendance in the school will be determined by the principal. Options include but are not limited to continued suspension and/or expulsion.
  • Appropriate confidentiality shall be maintained.


Mitigating circumstances such as first offense, age, seriousness of offense, prior conduct, cooperation of parent/guardian, attitude of student, and initial success of rehabilitative measures may warrant differences in procedures for the principal.

The approach to substance abuse should focus on education, not experimentation and provide a supportive environment for the learners. In determining consequences for violation, treatment and counseling shall have priority over, but not necessarily exclude disciplinary measures.


Fire and Tornado Drills

Fire drills are conducted on a regular basis and tornado drills are conducted once a year.  Detailed escape plans are posted inside the door of each classroom.  During tornado drills each classroom goes to a designated area with in the building.  For fire drills each class has an escape route to an outside area a safe distance from the building. Children are moved to these designated areas in a safe, quiet and orderly manner.


Tornado Warnings

If a tornado warning is in effect in the locality of Ascension school, students shall be taken to the designated safety area.  Children shall not be released from the school building during a tornado warning.  Parents/guardians waiting to pick up children during such a warning are encouraged to enter the school building and take cover with the students and staff.


Federal Asbestos Program

In accordance with the US EPA Asbestos Hazard Emergency Response Act (AHERA) and the Illinois Asbestos Abatement Act & Rules and Regulations, inspections and management plans have been made for Ascension school concerning materials containing asbestos.  A copy of these documents may be examined in the office during school hours.

The school complies with the applicable requirements of the Asbestos Abatement Act.

Date of the most recent plan documented – January 25, 2019


Crossing Guards

The Village of Oak Park does not provide crossing guards. Ascension teachers and staff help children cross from 7:50 am - 8:10 am and 2:55 PM - 3:10 PM. at the following intersections:


East and Van Buren

Clarence and Van Buren


Traffic Rules

When dropping off and picking up your child(ren), please be aware of the safety of all our students.  All parents who drive children to and from School must observe the following Village Parking Ordinances:

DO NOT park in the loading zone between 7:30 AM and 4:00 PM.  DO NOT park on the west side of Clarence Ave. between 7:00 and 9:00 AM.

DO NOT stop in crosswalks.

NO TURNS are permitted onto Van Buren between East and Clarence when the barricades are in place.

DO NOT DOUBLE PARK.  Pick up and drop off children only at the curb.  Double parking creates a danger to children who are moving between cars and walking in the street.

DO NOT CALL children to cross in the middle of the street to reach your car.  All pedestrians must cross at the crosswalks.

All crossing guards have been trained to ensure the safety of your child.  If you do not agree with them, please do not direct comments to them; speak to the Principal.


Driving Routes

As designated by the Village, all vehicular traffic approaching Ascension School for drop-off and pick-up should approach the School from south or north on East Avenue, west on Harrison, and north on Clarence to the drop-off/pick-up zone.


Walking Routes


All students walking from the south and west on Van Buren (whether walking on the north or south sidewalk) should cross at the marked crosswalks on Clarence.  Those walking on the north sidewalk must cross Clarence first, and then proceed in front of the barricades on the east side of Van Buren (another marked crosswalk).

All students walking from the north on Clarence on the east sidewalk should cross at the marked crosswalk in front of the barricades on Van Buren.  Those walking on the west sidewalk should cross Clarence first, and then proceed to the marked crosswalk in front of the barricades on Van Buren.

All students walking from the south and east should use the marked crosswalks at East Avenue to approach the School on the south sidewalk of Van Buren.


Emergency Closing

Closing due to severe weather is rare. In the event that a weather condition occurs that warrants closing the school, parents/guardians can expect information to be available at Information will also be available on the school website at

The Principal’s decision, in consultation with the Pastor, to open or close the school is informed primarily by the following factors:

  • the status of District 97;
  • the safety of students walking and being driven to school;
  • the ability of teachers and staff to get to school;
  • other available guidance provided by the Village of Oak Park and emergency management agencies.

The school employs an automatic calling system, School Messenger, to communicate with parents/guardians. If you do not receive a telephone communication, please monitor the school’s website and social media outlets for additional information.

The school recognizes that severe weather may pose different challenges and raise different concerns among our school families. Each student’s parent or guardian is the ultimate decision maker about whether his or her child attends school on a severe weather day. If a parent or guardian elects to keep his or her child at home, the student will qualify for an excused absence.

Submitted: January 12, 2015
Approved: February 9, 2015
Replacing Policy No. 1999 - 03038


Visitors / Security of the Building

All parents, visitors or volunteers must report to the office and sign in before going to their destination.  All visitors must then sign out at the school office upon leaving. Parents should not bring forgotten items directly to the classroom.


Please be sure that the doors close tightly behind you when entering or exiting the school building.  Also, do not open the doors for anyone or admit anyone into the school building.  In order to ensure the safety of your children, the office must be aware of all visitors to the building.  Please remember to sign in at the school office in order to help us meet this goal.


The parents/guardians and students of Ascension are asked to help the teachers and staff provide a safe school.  Parents/guardians and students are asked to be aware of strangers in or near the school, acts of vandalism, or any situation that may pose a danger to the students, faculty and staff, or visitors to Ascension.   Please report any irregularity to the school office.


Volunteers: Safe Environments Requirements

Ascension School recognizes the ministerial efforts of volunteers as an extension of the work of Christ.  Volunteers receive their direction from the School Mission Statement, under the guidance of the School Staff.  Volunteers are needed within some classrooms to assist the classroom teacher, upon the teacher’s request. Volunteers are responsible to the people of Ascension and the School Staff, and are accountable to the people whom they serve. Specific expectations of volunteers and length of service may vary according to the nature of the service.

When working as a volunteer, please remember that the school is counting on your service.  If you cannot come at your appointed time, please call the school office.  Also, when working as a volunteer your main focus needs to be your assignment.  Please make arrangements to leave small children with another adult, so as not to distract the activity that is taking place.


Protection of Children and Youth

The mission of the Office for the Protection of Children and Youth is to promote the dignity of children and assist those who have been affected by abuse and trauma. Compliance requirements are as follows:


Archdiocese of Chicago Application for Employment or Volunteer Service (Form 7703) is to be completed by all prospective employees at the time of their interview. References are called and documented (local principal’s initials, dated) on the 7703 form of the person being considered for employment. The school retains all application forms for 3 years following the interview.


Criminal Background Screening


  • All employees and all volunteers who work with children must complete an online background check.
  • No one may begin to work or volunteer unless the criminal background check has been completed and approved.
  • All school employees and volunteers are required to complete the eAppsDB form, online. For assistance, call the Office for the Protection of Children and Youth at 312-751- 5238.
  • School employees hired after July 1, 2007 must be screened through digital fingerprinting procedures. Dates and sites are posted on the Archdiocese of Chicago web site.


Safe Environment Training (VIRTUS)


All employees and all volunteers who work with children must attend the Virtus/Protecting God’s Children training program within three months of beginning employment, ministry or service.

Verification of completing Virtus Training is filed in the personnel or volunteer file at the place of employment/ministry.

Dates and sites for the Safe Environment Training (Virtus/Protecting God’s Children) are posted on the Archdiocese of Chicago web site (Register online, after being hired or accepted as a volunteer.)

If the new employee or volunteer has previously completed the Virtus training, inform the local school administrator and provide a copy of the certificate received at the time of training.


Code of Conduct

All employees and all volunteers who work with children must read, sign and date the Code of Conduct Personnel Acknowledgement Form.

The signed Code of Conduct form is to be kept in the personnel file or volunteer file at the place of employment/ministry.


Child Abuse and Neglect Tracking System (CANTS)

All employees and all volunteers who work with children must complete the Illinois Child Abuse and Neglect Tracking System CANTS 689 form. The form is to be given to the local administrator.

One copy is mailed, by the local school administrator, to the Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS), Springfield; a copy is retained in the personnel or volunteer file at the place of employment/ministry.


Mandated Reporters

All school employees must complete CANTS 22 form acknowledging an understanding of the reporting requirements. They must attend a training workshop for Mandated Reporters.

Note: All of the above forms are available online at under the Protecting God’s Children link. All forms, except the CANTS form, are available in English, Spanish and Polish. it is current.  Please do not call the rectory for information. Board policy # 99-03-08





Discipline Philosophy

Our philosophy is based on the gospel values of Jesus.


Ascension is a school community of individuals who have rights—to learn, to feel comfortable and safe, and to have opportunities to reach full potential.  We recognize the dignity and equality of all persons.  To function as a successful educational Christian Community, each child has the responsibility to respect the rights of others.  Our goals, as educators and parents, must be to consider the common good and to ensure that our actions and treatment of others will help to create God’s Kingdom on earth.


Consequences occur when actions take away another person’s rights and opportunities.  Teachers will articulate and display rules and expectations that are necessary for successful classroom management.  Children will be aware of the consequences for their chosen actions.


It is important that parents, teachers and students have a common commitment to ensure a peaceful and productive environment.  Teachers and parents must cooperate as partners in all aspects of school life.  The climate of our school is important, so it is worthwhile to address behavioral concerns immediately.


Ascension School feels that children must learn that there are consequences for inappropriate behavior.  Children learn through experiences, so corrections are important to the child’s growth and development as a member of the school community and society at large.  Corrective measures may be warnings, discussions of the problem with the child and/or the parent/guardian, restitution, or other penalties, some of which are listed.  Whatever measures are used, the ultimate purpose is to impress upon the child the need to be responsible for the choices and actions they take, as well as to contribute to the educational and social needs of the school community.  While there are some behaviors and possible courses of action listed, other reasonable actions for behaviors may be used by the teachers and staff.


Ascension All School Rules
1. Respect Yourself, Others and Things
Looks/ Sounds Like


  • Being courteous and responsive to faculty, staff members, lunchroom supervisors, visitors and each other.
  • Listening and follow directions of teachers, staff and supervisors.
  • Keeping hands, feet and objects to yourself.
  • Respecting school property, other’s property and your own.
  • Acting as representatives of the school.
  • Create pride and respect in one’s work, complete it on time, and share only if you are directed to do so.
  • Owning up to your mistakes.
Does Not Look/Sound Like


  • Rude or loud talking. Ignoring people.
  • Bullying.  [Anti-Bullying Policy, below]
  • Using normal objects in harmful ways.
  • Damaging or vandalizing objects or property.
  • Talking negatively about the school.
  • Plagiarism,( taking another other’s work and passing it on as your own), sharing your work or allowing others to use your work.
  • Blaming others.


2. Contribute to the Learning Environment
Looks/ Sounds Like


  • Arriving promptly at designated areas.
  • When dismissed, leaving in a quiet and orderly manner.
  • Walking and speaking quietly in the halls.
  • Coming to school prepared to learn.
  • Displaying a positive attitude.
  • Responding appropriately
Does Not Look/Sound Like


  • Coming late.
  • Disturbing others by making loud noises or being rowdy.
  • Running or shouting in the halls.
  • Forgetting supplies, books or work.
  • Being negative, grumpy or moody.
  • Talking disrespectfully.




3. Follow All School Procedures
Looks/ Sounds Like


  • Wearing the school uniform with pride.
  • Taking care of your school uniform.
  • Eating food only in designated areas.
  • Keeping outside and inside of lockers neat and free from tape or stickers.
  •  Having backpack or wheeled carrier that fit into locker.
  • Carrying books and supplies to each class.
Does Not Look/Sound Like


  • Being out of uniform.
  • Looking messy, clothing needing repair.
  • Bringing or eating food where it is not permitted; chewing gum.
  • Having papers hanging out of locker, locker left open.
  • Having a carrier too big to fit in locker.
  • Book bags, backpacks or carriers used during the school day.




Introduction to the Discipline Cycle

Tteachers believe that confrontation (coming face to face) is part of their task as disciplinarians, they welcome opportunities to help children help themselves.


Incidents of inappropriate and/or disruptive behavior are dealt with in the classroom whenever possible. Each classroom teacher has adopted the three rules on the previous pages.  The teachers work with the children to make sure the rules are understood and the reasons for the rules are taught.  Children learn that each adult may have different procedures to help them follow the rules.  Some items that might appear on the teacher’s classroom cycle include these:


  • Student must accept responsibility for the behavior.
  • Student must resolve to avoid a recurrence of the chosen behavior.
  • Student must repair what has occurred.
  • Restitution required in some instances.
  • Students may be sent away from class to a supervised area.
  • A form letter will be given for the student to explain the matter.
  • Time outs may be given.
  • Behavior Notices to parents may be given.
  • Students may be required to stay after school.


MAJOR INCIDENTS require immediate removal from the classroom.
These include the BIG THREE:




Examples of the BIG THREE:


Leaving school without permission

Possession, use, sale or distribution of dangerous, noxious or unlawful objects* including pornography.

Tampering with protective fire equipment, violating fire codes or emergency services systems.






Any form of obscene or vulgar language, including racial, sexual or ethnic slurs


Deliberate damage to school or personal property

Wearing gang related clothing or colors, or using gang signs



Truancy, cutting classes

Disrespect for teachers

Chronic classroom disruptions

Provoking behavior

Unwilling to take direction

Failure to follow the terms of the Internet Access Policy


*unlawful objects include, but are not limited to, cigarettes, liquor, drugs or related paraphernalia, matches, lighters, knives, weapons, Chinese stars, fireworks or related items, razor blades, etc.

In addition to the above, a Major Incident may be anything that, in the opinion of the principal or assistant principal, constitutes a serious and significant disruption of learning, endangers the safety of students or staff or undermines the school’s philosophy and goals.


Gang Activity

Gang-related activities are contrary to Catholic Social Teaching and have no place in the Catholic school.

Intimidation and/or disrespect of any person are unacceptable.


The following may be subject to disciplinary action:

  • intimidation and threat of physical harm of others
  • symbols that may be gang-related in the manner displayed, including but not limited to jewelry, jackets, sweatshirts, caps or other forms of clothing
  • display of signs/symbols on paper, notebooks, textbooks, and other possessions that may be gang-related
  • conduct on or off premises that may be gang-related
Public Scandal Involving Student

Students will be subject to disciplinary action for:

  • actions gravely detrimental to the moral, spiritual and physical welfare of other students;
  • actions which are detrimental to the school’s reputation;
  • grave offenses which may include a violation of criminal law;
  • actions so outrageous as to shock the conscience or behavior of the community.



To uphold the dignity of the human person, the sacredness of human life, and provide a safe, secure environment:


  • Students shall not carry, possess, or use weapons in school, or on school premises.
  • Weapons include but are not limited to the following: knives, handguns, brass knuckles, “billy clubs,” bats, pipes, sticks and any other object that causes bodily harm.

School authorities have the right to inspect and search lockers, desks, parking lots and school property.

Parents/Guardians of the students involved shall be notified as soon a possible. Students who violate these directives are subject to suspension and/or expulsion. School officials are required to report weapon violations to the local police. The weapon is turned over to the local police jurisdiction.

  • If found, the Ascension School chief administrator:
  • Immediately notifies a local law enforcement agency of firearm incidents at the school;
  • Immediately notifies the parents or guardians of students in possession of firearms on school grounds, which include the real property comprising any school, on a public way within 1,000 feet of a school, or in any conveyance owned, leased, or contracted by a school to transport students to or from school or a school related activity within 48 hours of becoming aware of the incident; and
  • Notifies the Illinois State Police of such incidents through the School Incident Reporting System (SIRS).
Anti-Bullying Policy


Definition of Bullying:

Bullying is repeated verbal, physical or psychological attacks intended to hurt a person, cause stress or lower self-esteem. In a school, bullying can prevent students from learning, being comfortable and feeling safe in the environment where they spend their day. Bullying includes, but is not limited to, intimidation, cyber bullying ( using electronics to bully) harassment, social isolation, threats, inappropriate physical contact, lack of respect for property of others, teasing, spreading rumors or gossip and in some cases, violence.


The Ascension School community recognizes that bullying is a serious form of violence that can negatively affect a student for life. Bullying creates an environment of harassment, intimidation and abuse.


Efforts to stop bullying at Ascension, (including all school-sponsored activities), must involve the entire school community. The following statements define Ascension School’s Policy:


Bullying is not acceptable and will not be tolerated by anyone regardless of age, gender or position.

Teachers will incorporate anti-bullying instruction in the existing curriculum.

Acts of bullying will not be ignored. Adults will take the lead in confronting bullying behavior and will speak up when they see bullying occur. Parents will speak to their children about the anti-bullying policy.

Because children cannot handle acts of bullying on their own, they need the support of adults, and practices in place for responding to bullying in a consistent manner.

Students should tell an adult (school staff, the pastor, parish staff or parents) if they experience bullying.

The child being bullied will have a say in how he/she would like the situation handled. Examples include speaking to the person alone or in the presence of an adult. The student could work with administration or the classroom teacher and parents to resolve the situation. In severe instances police could be called.

Ascension school will follow the school discipline code for consequences in cases of bullying.

The child who is bullying will identify his/her plan to rectify his/her behavior, and comply with any consequences.

By standers are encouraged to report any incidents of bullying they witness.

Bullying reports are serious. There will be consequences for making false reports.



Steps in the Discipline Cycle


STEP ONE: The student is sent to the school office with a referral form.  The top part of the referral is filled out by the adult who sent the child to the office.

The student will meet with the principal or assistant principal.

The student will complete the bottom part of the referral, with assistance if necessary.

The student will inform a parent or guardian of the incident by phone or by getting a signature on the form.

The student will be held accountable for the plan developed on the referral form.

The principal and the student will speak with the referring staff member to resolve the situation and get the child back in the classroom.


STEP TWO:  If a student is sent to the school office a second time within a one-month period.

The student will repeat 1, 2 and 3 from STEP ONE.

A conference with the teacher, parent or guardian, student and principal or assistant principal will be scheduled.

A contract will be drawn up listing actions that will be taken by each participant in the conference.

A date to review the contract will be determined.

The Discipline Cycle will be reviewed with the parent or guardian.


STEP THREE: If a student is sent to the office a third time in a one-month period, or in extreme cases when the principal or assistant principal determines the seriousness of the action warrants starting at Step Three.

The student will repeat step 1 and 2 from Step One.

The student meets with the principal or assistant principal.

The student notifies the parent or guardian that a suspension of up to three days has been earned.  The exact length and type (in-school or out-of-school) will be determined by the principal or assistant principal.

A conference will be held with a parent or guardian, teacher(s), student and principal or assistant principal to write a plan with measurements for progress to assist the student in developing self-control.

A recommendation may be made to have the family visit with a counselor or other specialist.

All schoolwork missed during the period of     suspension must be completed before the student rejoins the class. 

A probationary time period to monitor and review progress will be set once the student is ready to return to class.


Note: Step three may be repeated as long as a student is able to demonstrate that progress is being made, and is willing to contribute to a positive learning environment.  When little or no change is evident and school personnel have exhausted all available means to affect change, the student will move to Step Four of the cycle.


STEP FOUR: The principal will recommend alternative schooling.

The decision to terminate a student rests with the principal and pastor.

If termination is decided upon, the student’s parents/guardians will be notified in writing, the reasons for dismissal will be given, and the right to request a hearing will be explained.

The termination may be reconsidered by the principal when a written request for a special hearing is made by the parents.


Steps on the Discipline Cycle can be skipped in the following cases:

  • Whenever a BIG THREE action is done.
  • When repeated correction, coaching and/or prompting does not help a child change his/her behavior.
  • When all possible means of interaction has been tried and no improvement is evident. All documentation is turned over to the principal.


Expectations for Behavior and Confidentiality

As partners in promoting the moral growth and development of students, all school personnel, parents and students should be familiar with expectations for how we conduct ourselves in the school community setting.


Behavior standards and policies are for the common good of all students and educators, and depend on mutual respect.  At the principal’s discretion, these guidelines may be set aside for alternative strategies or more appropriate resolutions.  In all cases, a spirit of Christianity and confidentiality is of utmost importance.


Resolving Questions and Disagreements

Issues between individuals should, first of all, be discussed respectfully.  Whether between students, or parents and teacher, the classroom teaching routine should not be disrupted.  All encounters and discussions should maintain the respect of all, with a spirit of openness to God’s grace and the healing power of the Holy Spirit.


Arguing and emotional outbursts are non-productive when inappropriate behavior occurs.  Matters should be discussed calmly, away from others.  Students or parents who wish to discuss an issue with a teacher should request a mutually agreeable appointment time.  The principal and assistant principal should not be approached until the matter has been discussed with the teacher or staff member.


The appropriate sequence for questions of Responsibility or fairness should be:

  • Private, scheduled discussion among the people directly involved.
  • Principal or assistant principal requested to review the situation, if needed.


Follow up meetings are available to resolve any outstanding issues.


Searches of School Property

All property of the school, including student desks and lockers, as well as contents, may be opened, searched or inspected at any time without notice. School personnel have an unrestricted right to search this property as well as any containers, book bags, purses, or articles of clothing that are left unattended on the school campus.



The Pastor, administration, and staff of Ascension School believe that all students and employees are entitled to work and study in school-related environments that are Christ-centered and free of harassment.


The school will treat complaints of harassment seriously and will respond to such complaints in a prompt, confidential, and thorough manner. Harassment of any type will not be tolerated and appropriate disciplinary action will be taken. Disciplinary action may include suspension, expulsion, or termination.

Examples of harassment include the following:

  • verbal or written taunting
  • bullying
  • offensive, intimidating, hostile or offensive conduct
  • ranking/rating of personal characteristics such as race, disability, ethnicity, or perceived sexual orientation
  • jokes, stories, pictures, cartoons, drawings or objects which are offensive, tend to alarm, annoy, abuse, or demean an individual or group.


Sexual Harassment

Sexual harassment by one employee of another, by an employee of a student, by a student of an employee, or by one student of another is unacceptable conduct.

Employees or students who engage in any type of sexual harassment will be subject to appropriate discipline, including suspension, termination, or expulsion.


A. Any person who feels that he or she has been a victim of sexual harassment shall bring the problem to the immediate attention of the principal.

B. The principal shall answer questions about this policy, engage in fact finding to determine the details regarding the complaints of sexual harassment, and take appropriate corrective action.

C. If the complainant is uncomfortable for any reason with discussing such matters with the principal, or if the complainant is not satisfied after bringing the matter to the attention of this individual, the complainant shall report the matter promptly to the pastor or the school consultant at the Office of Catholic Schools.

D. The school will determine the facts regarding all allegations of sexual harassment in as prompt and confidential a manner as possible and will take appropriate corrective action when warranted.





Internet Policy

The Ascension School computer system is solely owned and operated by Ascension School in order to encourage an appropriate learning environment in the Catholic educational tradition.


The Internet is a network of computers that links together millions of users.  The Internet enables a user to connect to libraries, museums, databases, and other information sources throughout the world.  Internet access is available to Ascension students through the school's computer system.  Any use of the Internet through the Ascension computer system shall be consistent with the school's goal of promoting both academic excellence and social responsibility.


The operation of the Ascension computer system relies upon the proper conduct of all users.  As a result, users must adhere to guidelines consistent with the Ascension School Handbook.  We cannot attempt to state all prohibited user behavior.  Some specific examples are provided.


The failure of any user to follow the terms of the Internet Access Policy may result in a loss of privileges and/or other appropriate disciplinary action.


Terms and Conditions

Acceptable use:  Access to Ascension School's Internet and use of the computer system must only be for the purpose of education or research and must be consistent with the educational objectives of Ascension School.


Privilege:  The use of Ascension School's computer system is a privilege, not a right, and inappropriate use may result in a cancellation of those privileges. The Principal, in consultation with the appropriate staff members, will make all decisions regarding whether or not a user has violated these terms and may, in the Principal's discretion, deny, revoke, or suspend computer use and/or Internet access at any time.  The Principal's decision is final.

Ascension School may not request or require a student to provide a password or other related account information in order to gain access to the student’s account or profile on a social networking website;

Inappropriate Use: Students are responsible for their own actions and activities involving the school computer system and the Internet, and may not engage in any inappropriate use.

Ascension School may conduct an investigation or require a student to cooperate in an investigation if there is sufficient evidence to suggest the student’s social network account violates the school’s disciplinary policy; and,

Ascension School may require the student to share content in the course of such an investigation.

Use of the technology resources that are prohibited include, but are not limited to:


  • violating student rights to privacy/confidentiality, or unauthorized disclosure, use, and dissemination of personal identification information;
  • attempting any unauthorized access, including hacking of any computer system;
  • downloading unacceptable materials; this would include but not be limited to: copyrighted material, and/or threatening, profane, abusive, inaccurate, racially offensive, discriminatory, harassing, or obscene material;
  • unreasonably wasting computer resources such as file space or discs;
  • re-posting personal communication without the author’s prior consent; 
  • violating copyright law;
  • using school technology resources for financial gain, credit card fraud, electronic forgery, other illegal activity and political purposes;
  • downloading, installing or storing software on a school computer without the approval of appropriate school personnel;
  • changing or attempting to alter any configuration, program or password on any computer or system;
  • using a school computer without knowledge/approval of school personnel responsible for the computer;
  • using inappropriate language, pictures, and gestures in any form on the Internet;
  • using the Internet for entertainment or limited self-discovery function;
  • using the Internet for unauthorized purchases, or to attempt to purchase, any goods, products or services over the Internet;
  • attempting to access the computer system or Internet by using another user's password;
  • transmitting or receiving any material in violation of international, federal or state law
  • sending or transmitting junk mail or chain letters;
  • forging e-mail messages or posting anonymous messages;
  • cyber-bullying
  • using the computer system when access privileges are suspended or have been revoked.


Network Etiquette:  Students are expected to abide by generally accepted rules of computer and Internet etiquette.  These include, but are not limited to, the following:

Users must always be polite and may not become abusive in messages or e-mail to others;

The use of vulgar, obscene, offensive, inflammatory or inappropriate language is forbidden;

Users may not reveal the personal addresses or telephone numbers of students, friends, or others;

Users may only use their real names in communication, as directed by faculty. Impersonation or anonymity is not permitted.


Vandalism and Mischief:  Vandalism and mischief are prohibited.  Vandalism is defined as any intentional attempt to harm or destroy data of another user, the Internet, or any other network.  This includes, but is not limited to, the deliberate creation or spread of any computer virus.  Any attempt to interfere with the computer system or the works of other users, with or without malicious intent, is considered mischief.


Security:  All information maintained in the computer system is the property of Ascension School.  This information includes, but is not limited to: files; software; documents; e-mail; and discs.  This information, even when deleted, may be accessed at any time by an authorized staff member of Ascension School.  Computer security is a high priority.  If any user identifies a security problem on the Internet, that user must immediately notify a teacher or the Principal.  Users may not demonstrate any problem to any other users. Account and password information is to be kept confidential.  Any attempt to log-on to the Internet as a system administrator will result in cancellation of user privileges.


Disclaimer: Although Ascension School has taken precautions to eliminate controversial material, it is impossible to control all materials on the Internet.  Internet sites may contain material that is illegal, defamatory, obscene, inaccurate, or controversial.  With global access to computers and people, there is a risk that students may access materials that may not be considered to have any educational value in the context of a grammar school setting.  Use of any information obtained via the Internet is at the user's own risk.  Ascension School specifically denies any responsibility for the accuracy or quality of information obtained through its Internet services.



The user agrees to indemnify Ascension School for any and all losses, costs, or damages, including reasonable attorney fees, incurred by Ascension School relating to, or arising out of, the user's breach of this Authorization. Board policy # 99-06-14


Internet Posting

Group photos of students and student work may occasionally be posted on the school's web site. Ascension School follows the Archdiocese of Chicago’s policies for identification of students. Parents have the right to specify that their child(ren)’s photo or work may not be published.


Grades Pre-K – 6


Student Work

First name only will be used with no photograph.


Student Photographs

Small or large group photographs of students are permitted but may not have any identifying names.

Individual student photographs are not permitted.

Grades 7 – 12


Student Work

First and last names are permitted with no indication of grade level and no individual photograph with the name.


Student Photographs

Individual, small or large group photographs of students are permitted but may not have any identifying names.

Use of Technology Outside of School

Parents/Guardians are primarily responsible for the student’s appropriate and ethical use of technology outside of school. However, the inappropriate use of technology outside of school may subject the student to disciplinary action. Inappropriate use of technology may include, but is not limited to harassment of others, use of the school name, remarks directed to or about teachers and staff, offensive communications including videos/photographs and threats.


Unauthorized costs incurred for online purchases charged to the school are the responsibility of the student and her/his family.


Use of Technology Inside of School

Students should not bring personal items (toys, electronic devices, etc.) to school.  This includes but is not limited to portable media players, wireless handheld devices, pagers, computers, digital cameras, and other devices. The school is not responsible for the loss of personal items.  Students who bring devices or toys must keep them turned off during school hours. Students may not use such items during the school day. Teachers will hold any items being used until the end of the day. Parents/Guardians of students who violate these rules will be contacted.


Cell Phone Policy

No cell phones are allowed in a student's possession during the school day.  Students must turn in cell phones to the homeroom teacher upon entering the classroom each morning.  Students are not allowed to use cell phones during the hours of 7:45 a.m. – 3:15 p.m.  Any cell phone found on a student will be confiscated and returned only to the parent/guardian.


Parent / School Communication


Communications to Parents

The school’s regular communication is the weekly Mailing. The mailing is sent home via email and is posted on the school website. The mailing includes timely news, calendars and other information.


Web site

The school web site is News and information about the school, classroom activities, event and achievements are posted regularly. The school staff is listed along with e-mail addresses for administration, office staff and teachers. E-mail guidelines are posted on the Staff page.


Non-Custodial Parent-Teacher Conferences/Communication

In the absence of a court order, a school should provide the non-custodial parent the opportunity (upon request) for a parent teacher conference. The conference should be scheduled at a time other than that of the custodial parent unless both parents do not object to the same conference.  In the absence of a court order to the contrary, a school will provide the non-custodial parent with access to the academic records and to other school-related information regarding the child.  If there is a court order specifying that there is to be no information given, it is the responsibility of the custodial parent to provide the school with an official copy of the court order.


Change of Address / Phone / Work Phone / Emergency Information

Parents are responsible for informing the school of names, address or phone changes as soon as possible, including day care providers and emergency contacts.



Students are discouraged from using school telephones.  Students should not make calls for forgotten books, homework, PE equipment, lunches, field trip forms, or other items. Students may call home in cases of emergency.


Forgotten Articles

Forgotten articles such as homework, gym clothes, lunches, or projects will become the responsibility of the student, and Ascension School asks that parents/guardians do not deliver them to the school after drop-off in the morning. Remember, the lunchroom personnel will provide peanut butter sandwiches to those students who have forgotten a lunch.


Messages During the School Day

Parents/guardians should not call the school office with messages except in extreme emergencies.  Information regarding who will pick up the student, where to go after school, etc. should be arranged before the child comes to school.  The school assumes no responsibility for passing messages to the student during the school day.


Lost and Found

Students should check the lost and found as soon as an item is noticed missing. All belongings brought to school should be clearly marked with the student’s name.  Unclaimed articles will be donated to charity after a sufficient time.  The Lost and Found is located in the outside vestibule or in the school office.



Student Life


Christian Initiation Policy

In accordance with Archdiocesan policy for schools and religious education programs, parents are required to present a Baptismal Certificate at the time of registration.

Children not baptized in the Catholic faith do not participate in sacramental preparation for Eucharist, Reconciliation and Confirmation.  It is the responsibility of the parent(s) to inform the child of this policy at the earliest opportunity.  The school/religious education staff will support the family with any resources that may be helpful in understanding this policy.

Those children who have not been baptized or have been baptized in another faith tradition who themselves, or in agreement with their families, choose to explore the Catholic faith have an opportunity to join an Inquirers Group.  No one’s journey can be compared to another’s; recognizing that God’s call to each is most individual.  Each person’s journey is unique.  Therefore, the period of Inquiry is the first step in an open-ended process that may lead to Baptism in the Catholic faith if the individual chooses to pursue it.

Those younger than seven years of age are to be baptized according to the Rite of Infant Baptism.  Those seven years of age or older are to be initiated through the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults in accordance with the Church’s Code of Canon Law.
Parents interested in information regarding this process may contact the principal, Director of Religious Education or the Pastoral Associate of the Parish.

All sacramental preparation is conducted through meetings scheduled outside regular class time.

Liturgy and Prayer

Ascension students attend school liturgies regularly, and additional prayer services are scheduled each month. Grade level and Sacramental Prayer Services occur several times a year. Ascension teachers lead the students in daily prayer within the classroom.


Homework Policy

Teachers often give homework to help reinforce what has been presented during the school day. This work can give the parents/guardians an opportunity to follow the child’s progression in school.  Written work is not the only type of homework; study assignments, unfinished class work, projects and book reports are also given.  Whatever work is assigned, emphasis should be placed on completeness, accuracy, and neatness.  If a child cannot complete homework, they may be asked to stay in at lunch, or may be assigned to the Homework Room.If for a particular reason a child cannot complete the homework, parents/guardians should communicate with the child's teacher. The student will then be permitted to make up the work.


Homework Guidelines

Homework assignments aid students in the ability to work independently.  Homework experiences will enable students to practice basic skills initiated in the classroom and may provide challenging enrichment activities.  Whenever homework is given, it should supplement, complement, and reinforce classroom teaching and learning.


In cases of an extended absence, the student is given a period of time to complete the homework equal to the number of days missed.


The following is the suggested daily length time for homework:


Primary grades                     15 to 30 minutes

Intermediate grades             30 to 60 minutes

Upper grades                       60 to 90 minutes


Homework Room

The school will provide a teacher-supervised Homework Room Tuesday and Thursday from 3:05 to 3:35. Students will be assigned to the room to complete outstanding assignments or to remain current with schoolwork.


Junior High Homework Policy

Assignments are due on the due date when collected by the teacher.

Work handed in later in the period or later in the day is considered late.

Work that is 1 day late will have a 10% reduction in the grade.

Work that is 2 days late will have a 20% reduction in the grade.

Work that is 3 or more days late will have a 50% reduction in the grade.

Students are expected to complete all assignments in a timely manner, and if necessary, may be required to complete the work at lunch or after school.

Excessive late assignments could result in additional consequences.

Students who need to print out assignments should arrive at school between 7:30 and 7:55 to complete all printing by 8:00.

Students who e-mail assignments must use an attachment for the file.

Students must have their own flash drive at all times.


Work Missed Due to Absence

It is the student’s, parent’s or guardian’s responsibility to obtain assignments in case of absence.


For extended absence, the same number of days as the absence will be given to complete the work. (Two days absent, two days to get assignments in.)  It will be considered late after that.


Students absent in the morning, but present in the afternoon, are responsible for the entire day’s assignments, both collected and assigned.


Absent work due to a Specials teacher should be turned in to that teacher upon return, even if the student does not have that class the day they return.


Upon return from a one-day absence, students are required to take any test that was given during the absence.


Special testing arrangements will be made for long-term absences.


Grading Scales

Grades 1-3  


G          Good                                                                                     

S          Satisfactory                                                                         

N         Needs Improvement


Grades 4-8


A+       100%
A          99-96
A-        95-93
B+       92-91
B         90-88
B-        87-85
C+       84-83
C         82-79
C-        78-77
D+       76-75
D         74-72
D-        71-70
F          69-0


Posting Student Grades

Teachers at some grade levels will post student assignment scores, homework scores and test grades on-line. Teachers will post grades in a timely manner. Parents will have access to their own children’s grades.


Progress Reports

Students in grades 4 – 8 receive Progress Reports, which are e-mailed to parents mid- trimester.  These Reports indicate how the students have performed so far and what final grade they can expect if they continue in the same level of performance.  Accordingly, a failure at this time is not a final matter.  There is time to improve before the end of the trimester.   Progress reports do not become part of the child’s permanent record.


Parent-Teacher Conferences

Parent-Teacher Conferences are held at the end of the first trimester.  It is highly recommended that parents/guardians meet with their child’s teacher at that time.  A second optional Parent-Teacher Conference is held in the spring.  It is up to the discretion of the teacher or parents/guardians to schedule a conference at that time.  During the academic year, parents/guardians and teachers can request additional conferences. 


Report Cards

Report cards are issued following the completion of the grading period.  Please review your child’s progress and contact the student’s teacher if you have questions regarding grades.


Honor Roll Guidelines - Grades 6-8

There will be an Honor Roll Award for each trimester of the school year.  The criteria for the Honor Roll will be received during the first trimester of the school year.


Honor Roll in determined by the following point system:


A+       12
A         11
A-        10
B+       9
B         8
B-        7
C+       6
C         5
C-        4
D+       3
D         2
D-        1
​F          0


Classes included for Honor Roll are: Religion, Math, Language Arts, Science, Social Studies, Spanish, Art, Computer, P. E. and Music. A formula is used to give fractional credit for special subjects.


For High Honors, the student’s average must be 10.0 or over.

For Honors, the student’s average must be 8.5 to 9.9.

Honor Roll students may not have an “F” in any subject.

Illinois School Code

I. I. Ascension School will be in general compliance with applicable sections of the Illinois School Code [105 ILCS 5], with relevant case law, including Plyler v Doe, and with 23 Ill Adm. Code Part 425.


1.  Applicable sections of the Illinois School Code [105 ILCS 5];

Ascension School has written policies to ensure general compliance with applicable sections of the Illinois School Code [105 ILCS 5].


2.  Relevant case law including Plyer v Doe, 457 U.S. 202, 102 S Ct 2382 (1982); and,

Catholic schools shall admit students regardless of their citizenship status, provided that the student(s) meet all other admissions requirements in accordance with applicable state and federal laws to the extent that such anti-discrimination statues do not conflict with the teaching of the Roman Catholic Church.


3.  23 Ill Adm. Code Part 425.

All Archdiocese Schools must be registered with the State of Illinois and be recognized by the Illinois State Board of Education.  School communities and their principals must comply with these requirements annually to maintain ISBE recognition. These requirements include meeting administrative deadlines as determined by ISBE to ensure compliance and recognition.


Academic Eligibility for Extracurricular Activities

The student’s academic success has priority at Ascension School.  Extracurricular Activities enhance the educational experience and give children opportunities to develop skills and experience achievement. Extracurricular programs should not interfere with the student’s academic work or inhibit his/her ability to achieve success in the classroom.  Therefore, there are guidelines for extracurricular activity. Each activity has specific guidelines for participation. Students must be passing in all classes to participate. When a student is struggling academically, teachers will alert parents.


Please refer to the Ascension Athletic Handbook for guidelines for eligibility regarding Sports and Extracurricular Activities.


Standardized Testing

Currently, students of Ascension School in grade 3 through grade 8 take the standardized ACT Aspire assessment each spring, as directed by the Office of Catholic Schools.  These test scores, in conjunction with a variety of assessment techniques, are used to evaluate the progress of the students.Results are available through the Power School portal. 


Promotion / Retention

While the decision to promote or retain a student generally shall be a cooperative one made by parents/guardians, teachers, and administrator, nonetheless, the principal has the ultimate authority to make such a decision.  Ordinarily, parents/guardians shall be notified of the possibility of retention in writing. The first written notice will be given before December 1, the second early in February, and the final notice on May 1. Ascension School will follow the Guidelines for Retention established and approved by the Office of Catholic Schools.


Remediation Policy Grades 5-8

Teachers, parents and students, working in partnership throughout the course of the school year, will assist the students in achieving academic success in the major subject areas, defined as Religion, Reading, Mathematics, Social Studies, English and Science.


A student who fails two (2) consecutive trimesters of a major academic area must satisfactorily repeat the content of said trimesters in an approved summer program.  Remediation of said content will be, but is not limited to: before or after school assistance, extra credit assignments, assignment contracts, modified course work, outside tutoring, summer school. Both the program and program criteria must be discussed with the content area teacher and the principal prior to beginning remediation.  Promotion to the next grade level will be contingent upon reassessment of the student in August.


Graduation Requirements

As a requirement for elementary school graduation, each student shall receive a passing grade on an examination covering the Constitutions of the United States and the State of Illinois.  This examination may be a standardized form or one that is designed locally.  The fulfillment of this requirement shall be documented on the student’s permanent record.



Students who have failed to return school materials, books, or sports uniforms will be charged for their replacement.  All outstanding fines for the replacements or fines for damage to school materials must be paid before the final report cards are issued.


School Supplies

School supplies are not sold in the school.  Lists of necessary supplies are provided in the summer mailing.  Students are expected to come to school with the necessary supplies.  If a child is asked to bring a special item to school, it should be labeled.  All school bags and lunch boxes should have the child’s name in a prominent place.  School supplies should be checked and replaced periodically during the school year. Book bags, backpacks and carriers may be used to bring supplies between home and school. Students may not use backpacks or carriers during the day.



Students should not carry large sums of money to school.  Money for such things as tuition, books, uniforms, fees, etc., should be handed in during the homeroom period, first thing in the morning.  Money that a student must carry should be kept with the child or in the locker.  The school is not responsible for lost money.


Field Trips

Field trips enhance classroom learning and open new ideas of interest for the students. School personnel are encouraged to use the extensive resources available for one-day educational trips for students. The purpose and goal of the trip should correlate with the instructional level of the students and the curriculum. Details concerning the field trip should be sent to parents/guardians well in advance and should include the nature of the trip, its educational value, transportation arrangements, supervision and the cost per student.


The principal reserves the right to exclude a student from participating in a field trip. If the principal chooses not to allow the student to participate in the field trip, alternate plans for the day will be approved by the principal. Only those students enrolled in the school for which the field trip is planned are eligible to participate in school-sponsored field trips.


Adequate supervision must be provided for all field trips. Chaperones must be 21 years of age. All chaperones (volunteers) must be in compliance with the Protecting God’s Children and Youth regulations (Virtus).



Ascension school and faculty enjoy helping your child celebrate his or her special day.  However, the regular classroom routine should not be interrupted.  Parents should be aware that some children in the class might have food allergies. Students and parents bringing foods and beverages to school for celebrations are encouraged to provide healthful options. Refer to the Wellness Policy on the school web site’s Forms Page. The snack should be individually portioned so that it can quickly and easily be distributed to the entire class.  It is not the teacher’s responsibility to cut and serve treats or provide napkins and plates. Invitations to private celebrations are to be extended to the entire class, or invitations should be distributed away from the school. It is not our practice to allow students to decorate lockers. Students should not bring birthday gifts to school.


Bicycles/ Roller Blades/ Scooters/ Skateboards 

Students in grades 1-8 may ride a bicycle to school.  Bicycles must be walked when in the courtyard or on the sidewalks bordering the school.  Students must lock their bicycles to a bicycle rack. The school accepts no responsibility for the safety of bicycles.  Students are encouraged to wear protective gear, as the school accepts no responsibility for injury to students who ride bicycles.


Students may not ride bicycles on school property. Students may not have wheeled shoes (“heelys”) roller blades, scooters or skateboards on school property.


Ascension School property includes all alleys and the Courtyard.

East Avenue: from the church corner south to past the Parish green space.,

Van Buren: from East Avenue west to Clarence Avenue,

Clarence Avenue: from Van Buren, south to past the gym building.



Students have the responsibility of respecting the rights of individuals and property.  Picking up or throwing snow on school property is forbidden.  Students in violation will be referred to the principal for disciplinary action.


Shadow Days

A limited number of Shadow Days are available to 8th grade students to visit prospective high schools.  It is recommended that visits occur in the first semester.  Parental approval by written note is required. Students should check with teachers, and homework must be completed for the day that is missed.


Club Policy

Ascension School encourages teachers, parents, or volunteers to form “clubs” to enrich Ascension school students’ experience.  Participation in a club is a privilege and is optional. 

CLUB DEFINITION:  A “club” is defined as any Ascension student group that meets during non-instructional time (e.g. before school, after school, or during lunch/recess).  It includes school curriculum or non-curriculum related clubs.  It excludes lessons (e.g. orchestra, band) or athletic teams.  Please note athletic teams are governed under a separate policy.


CURRICULUM-RELATED CLUBS:  A club is “curriculum-related” if subject matter is taught or will be scheduled to be taught, in a regularly offered Ascension course.  Examples of Ascension Curriculum-related Clubs:  Science Club, Math Club, Art Club.


The principal will appoint a faculty sponsor for curriculum-related clubs.  The faculty sponsor must follow the finance policies and procedures of the Parish.  The faculty sponsor will be compensated for his/her time.  Additional adult volunteers may be requested.  All adult leaders/volunteers will submit a background check and undergo training required of the Archdiocese.

NON-CURRICULUM-RELATED CLUBS:  A club is “non-curriculum-related” if the subject matter is not taught or is not a scheduled to be taught, in a regularly offered Ascension course.  Examples of Ascension Non-Curriculum-related Clubs:  Technology, Robotics, Drama, Chess, Star Wars.

The principal may appoint a faculty sponsor or adult volunteer to supervise club meetings.  The faculty sponsor or adult volunteer must follow the finance policies and procedures of the Parish.  Any faculty sponsor will be compensated for his/her time.  All adult leaders/volunteers will submit a background check and undergo training required of the Archdiocese.

CLUB MEMBERSHIP:  The goal is to be as inclusive as possible.  Club membership should be open to all students but may be limited to specific grades(s) (e.g. 6th – 8th grade).

In the rare event that only a limited number of students may join the club, beyond grade level, this limitation and a membership process (e.g. first come-first served, lottery, or application) must be approved by the principal.  Such situations are strongly discouraged and clubs with this situation must demonstrate sound rationale for the limits.

If there is a limited number of students allowed in a club, the number needs to be clearly communicated to all parents when a new club year starts.  The club sponsor also needs to communicate the process for determining membership and a request for additional parent volunteers is that is the reason for a limit on the number of students.  A wait list should be kept.


CLUB TOURNAMENTS:  If the club participated in contests/tournaments, and all club members cannot participate in each contest/tournament, the faculty sponsor (or adult volunteer) will make the decision on who will participate in the contest/tournament.  The faculty sponsor (or adult volunteer) will inform club members and their parent/guardian at the first meeting the criteria that will be used to determine who participates in contests/tournaments.

If the contest/tournament is not on the Ascension campus, the faculty sponsor (or adult volunteer) will use the Archdiocese field trip form and follow the Archdiocese guidelines for the off campus activities.  The faculty sponsor (or adult volunteer) must bring the signed parent permission form (of the Archdiocese field trip form) and emergency information for each student to the contest/tournament.  The Archdiocese field trip and emergency information form and guidelines for off campus activities can be obtained for the school office.



Application – All applications for a club must be done in writing.  A written proposal must be submitted to the school office which includes the following information:

  • Focus of the club
  • Membership (consistent with guidelines above)
  • Duration of the club and meeting times
  • Name of sponsor (faculty required, if curriculum related)
  • Any participant fees required
    • Please note:  Ascension School will not provide funding.  All clubs need to be funded by member fees.  Any proposed fundraising must receive the prior approval of the principal as detailed in Ascension School Policies.

Approval – The principal needs to approve any club application.  Ascension School reserves the right to deny any club application.


Meeting Space – Club sponsors may apply to have meetings on the Ascension campus; however, use of campus space is not guaranteed.  Clubs will have to submit a space use form (available in Parish Office).  Ascension School reserves the right to deny use of school facilities.

Off-campus meetings/activities:  Off-campus meetings or activities must have prior approval of the principal.

(School Board policy approved 2/13/17)

Uniform Code

Students in grades K-8 wear school uniforms as described here. Preschool students do not wear school uniforms.

Boys’ Uniform
What it looks like                                                          What it doesn't look like
YES       NO

• Navy blue twill or corduroy dress slacks

• Denim or cargo pants      
• Light blue knit polo shirt with a collar, long or short sleeves • Sweaters in other colors or styles or with designs
• Solid navy blue sweater, cardigan or pullover, no logo • Sweatshirts not bearing the Ascension logo
• Ascension logo crew neck sweatshirt or hooded sweatshirt • Socks in other colors or with designs or slogans or visible logos
• Socks, solid color (black, white, navy blue) • Colored T-shirt under a uniform shirt
• Solid white undershirt (optional)

• T-shirt with writing on it under a uniform shirt

    • Black, navy, or dark brown dress belt (optional)  
    • Non-skid soft-soled shoes/gym shoes (closed toe, closed heel) – in neutral colors without embellishments -- must be properly laced & tied • High-top gym shoes

















    Girls’ Uniform
    What it looks like                                                         What it doesn't look like
    YES NO
    • Ascension plaid uniform jumper (grades K-4), • Denim or cargo pants
    • Ascension plaid uniform skirt (grades 5-8) • Jumpers or skirts that are more than 3 inches above the knee
    • Navy blue twill or corduroy dress slacks • “Low rise” pants
    • White blouse or polo shirt with a collar, long or short sleeves (Girls in grades 5-8 wear white banded polo shirt bloused at the waist.) • Leggings worn instead of slacks
    • Solid navy blue sweater, cardigan or pullover, no logo • Sweaters in other colors or styles or with designs
    • Socks, anklets, knee highs or tights in solid colors (black, white, navy blue)  
    • Solid white undershirt or camisole (optional) • Colored T-shirt under a uniform blouse/shirt
    • Shorts under uniform jumper in Kindergarten • T-shirt with writing under a uniform blouse/shirt
    • Non-skid soft-soled shoes/gym shoes (closed toe, closed heel) – in neutral colors without embellishments -- must be properly laced & tied

    • Boots (ankle or knee height)

    • High-top gym shoes

















    Ascension School Summer Uniform

    Tailored, navy blue uniform shorts may be worn by boys and girls until October 15th and after April 15th.

    What it looks like            What it doesn't look like
    YES NO
    • Navy blue walking shorts, no more than 2” above the knee • Denim, cargo or gym shorts (Gym shorts may be worn only days when a student has gym class.)
    • Light blue knit polo shirt for boys • Skirts, culottes, or skorts in any color 
    • White or knit polo shirt for girls  • Shirts in other styles or colors
    • Dress shoes or gym shoes • Socks, solid colors (black, white, navy blue) • Socks in other colors or with designs or slogans or visible logos


    Ascension School Physical Education Apparel (Gym Clothing)

     Kindergarten students have the option of wearing the Ascension School uniform or the Ascension Physical Education Apparel. On the days gym class is scheduled, Kindergarten students are required to wear the physical education apparel.

    Primary grade students (grades 1-3) wear physical education apparel to school on the days gym class is scheduled.

    What it looks like What it doesn't look like
    YES NO
    • Plain white t-shirt or Run-a-thon t-shirt Denim, cargo, or gym shorts (gym shorts may be worn only on days when a KDG-grade 3 students has gym class.)
    • Navy gym shorts or sweatpants/track pants Skirts, culottes, or skorts in any color.
     • Navy crew neck sweatshirt (optional) Shirts in other styles or colors.
    • Solid color socks Socks in other colors or withdesigns or solgans or other visible logos.
    • Gym shoes  









    General Uniform Guidelines

    Students are expected to be in the appropriate school uniform at all times. If a valid exception to the
    uniform code is needed, a parent must consult with the homeroom teacher or an administrator at the
    beginning of the school day. School uniforms contribute to a safe environment, minimize distractions,
    and promote fairness. Behavior and achievement are positively influenced by standards of dress.
    Neatness, pride in appearance, and compliance with the school's uniform code are the responsibility
    of students with guidance and encouragement from parents and teachers. The older the student, the
    more responsibility he/she bears for uniform compliance. Uniform clothing should be labeled with a
    student's name for easy identification. Parents and students are encouraged to make sure that all
    clothing is well-kept, clean, and replaced as needed. 


    Out of Uniform Consequences

    Homeroom teachers will ensure that students are in compliance with the Uniform Code each day.
    Students may be asked to change clothing or remove unauthorized items (such as jewelry). If
    possible, the school will supply alternate clothing. Parents may be called to bring uniform clothing to
    school for a student to wear. On most occasions, the homeroom teacher will notify parents of a
    uniform violation. It is expected that the parent will address the issue with the student so that the
    appropriate clothing will be worn consistently. Repeated instances of uniform non-compliance will be
    referred by the homeroom teacher to an administrator who  will contact the parents in an effort to
    identify problems with uniform compliance and correct them.


    Appearance on Out of Uniform Days 

    On occasion, students will be given an opportunity to "dress down" or come to school wearing
    clothing other than their school uniforms. Considerations for neatness, pride in appearance, safety
    and the recognition that students are attending school continue in the absence of uniforms. The
    following are not permitted: dirty or torn clothing, tight or form-fitting dress, outgrown or oversized
    clothing, flip flops, crocs or high heels, outdoor boots, halter or strapless or tank tops, t-shirts with
    inappropriate slogans (beer ads or suggestive wording, etc.), spaghetti straps, mini-skirts or shortshorts.
    On occasion, students will be asked to contribute to a designated charity for the privilege of
    dressing down. The contribution is voluntary, but students who choose not to contribute also elect to
    wear the regular school uniform.

     Uniform Orders

    All uniforms may be purchased through Schoolbelles Uniforms. Our school code is #S0735.

    The website address is

    Schoolbelles Corporate
    Customer Service
    4747 W. 160th Street
    Cleveland, OH 44135
    phone: 216-898-5500
    fax: 216-898-5514



    Schoolbelles of Bridgeview
    7763 South Harlem Avenue
    Bridgeview Court Plaza
    Bridgeview, IL 60455
    phone: 708-929-4695
    fax: 708-929-4697



    Schoolbelles of Chicago North
    7254 West Foster Avenue
    Harlem-Foster Shopping Center
    Chicago, IL 60656
    phone: 773-631-0450