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Staff » CQ Corner 2023-2024

CQ Corner 2023-2024

How Does Horace Mann Early Learning Center CQ?

During the 4th quarter’s CQ Corner feature, we will highlight the culturally responsive activities and events that have happened, are happening, or will happen in our schools. 

This week’s CQ Spotlight is Horace Mann Early Learning Center.

Muffins with Puffins

Horace Mann Early Learning Center and Head Start hosted "Muffins with Puffins" for all families.  There were nearly 150 attendees!  The event connected families to the program and engaged them as partners in the learning process.  

Nicole Berry

Director of Early Childhood Programming

muffins with puffins

How They CQ: 

Rock Island Center for Math & Science


Frances Willard


During the 4th quarter’s CQ Corner feature, we will highlight the culturally responsive activities and events that have happened, are happening, or will happen in our schools. 

This week’s CQ Spotlight is Rock Island Center for Math & Science, Denkmann, Frances Willard and Longfellow.


RICMS: Night at the Carnival

On Friday, May 10th, RICMS hosted A Night at the Carnival. Including students, families, and staff, over 600 people spent their night playing games, eating tacos and socializing with other members of the Tornadoes community which included many alumni who came back to work stations. This was the largest number of attendees to attend any family event in over 6 years. Excitement filled the air throughout the night as students and their family members had their faces painted, jumped in bounce houses, fished for prizes, or collected Tornado Tickets in the money grab booth. There was even a raffle with prizes donated by a variety of donors (Thank you very much). Every family who participated went home with a smile, prizes, some type of mustache, and positive comments about how much fun they had. Thanks to all our families for contributing to a wonderful evening.

John Hawley

RICMS Principal

RICMS carnival RICMS carnival
RICMS carnival ricms carnival


Longfellow: Shades of Beauty

In collaboration with Augustana‘s Office of Student Inclusion and Diversity and the 2024 Shades of Beauty Summit, K-Kids members at Longfellow received brand new Barbies to share, discover, and celebrate their diversity.


Beauty Summit

Liz Kantner

Longfellow Teacher

Frances Willard: Hip Hop Fair and Madie the Therapy Dog 

On April 26, Frances Willard 5th and 6th grade students held their annual Hip Hop Fair. Students worked in small groups to research Hip Hop artists, created a presentation, and then shared the presentation in the gym for all students and families. During the event 6th grade students then had a choreographed dance highlighting the evolution of Hip Hop through song and dance. Our very own Ms. Greenwood compiled the music and dance spending PE class time, recess time, and prep time teaching students their parts.

Also, Let’s talk about Madie! Madie is the therapy dog at Frances Willard. She has brought joy to students and staff all year. There are even adults that come to school and ask about Madie. She celebrates students when they come to the office with positive referrals. She loves to attend morning meetings, visit classrooms, and even go out to recess. During a recent visit from Mr. Paul Forbes, he even highlighted on his Instagram the impact Madie had on him and on our school culture.

Nicole Melody

Frances Willard Principal

Denkmann: Leader in Me Lighthouse

Denkmann achieved the Lighthouse Milestone through The Leader in Me. The Lighthouse School Designation is earned by schools that demonstrate the following: 

  • The principal, school administration and staff engage in ongoing learning and develop as leaders, while championing leadership for the school. 
  • Leadership principles are effectively taught to all students through direct lessons, integrated approaches, and staff modeling. Students are able to think critically about and apply leadership principles. 
  • Families and the school partner together in learning about the 7 Habits and leadership principles through effective communication and mutual respect. 
  • The school community is able to see leadership in the physical environment, hear leadership through a common language, and feel leadership through a culture of caring, relationships, and affirmation. 
  • Leadership is shared with students through a variety of leadership roles and student voice leads to innovations within the school.
  •  Schoolwide, classroom, family, and community leadership events provide authentic environments to celebrate leadership, build culture, and allow students to practice leadership skills.
  •  The school utilizes the 4DX® process to identify and track progress toward Wildly Important Goals (WIGs) for the school, classroom, and staff. 
  • Students lead their own learning with the skills to assess their needs, set appropriate goals, and carry out action plans. They track progress toward goals in Leadership Notebooks and share these notebooks with adults in student-led conferences. 
  • Teacher planning and reflection, trusting relationships, and student-led learning combine to create environments for highly engaged learning.

Patrick Versluis

Denkmann Principal

How They CQ: Washington Jr. High

Edison Jr. High

During the 4th quarter’s CQ Corner feature, we will highlight the culturally responsive activities and events that have happened, are happening, or will happen in our schools. 

This week’s CQ Spotlight is Edison Jr. High and Washington Jr. High.


Washington Jr. High Hosts Mobile Museum of Tolerance 


Washington Jr. High School welcomed the Mobile Museum of Tolerance, exploring civil rights using historic and contemporary lenses.  The students watched a short documentary and discussed topics such as identity, commonality, discrimination, stereotypes, segregation, and equality.

Tonya Smith

WJHS  Principal


       museum of tolerance      museum of tolerance

Edison Praises Partnering with Stakeholders

Edison Jr. High School  practices inclusivity, equity, and high expectations each day. As a part of implementing the Edison ABCs, we find ways to make sure to celebrate when our stakeholders SOAR!

Christi Varnes

EJHS  Principal



How They CQ: Ridgewood & Thomas Jefferson

During the 4th quarter’s CQ Corner feature, we will highlight the culturally responsive activities and events that have happened, are happening, or will happen in our schools. 

This week’s CQ Spotlight is Ridgewood Elementary and Thomas Jefferson Elementary.


Ridgewood’s Life Skills Integration

Ridgewood is proud to support cultural competency. Ridgewood is blessed to have the Life Skills program in our building. One area of CQ Ridgewood continues to work on is equitable systems for all students. By providing this opportunity for all learners, Ridgewood is able to integrate some Life Skills students into regular education settings. Ridgewood also has general education students who are helpers who take students on building walks. Building the capacity of every student and staff member has been rewarding and the growth mindset is amazing.

Joey Dilulio

Ridgewood Principal

Thomas Jefferson: Culture and Career Night 

The Thomas Jefferson FACE Team hosted a Culture and Career Night on Thursday, April 4th. Cultures highlighted at the event included Somoan heritage (presented by the Mikaio family) and Karen Dancers (secured through EL teacher Crystal Aldeman). Careers included Electrician (Maribeth Hartmann), Artist (Cassandra Mikaio), Construction Management (Tom and Kathy Slayden), and Chef (Xavier Wilson). All those involved are parents to TJ students! It was a wonderful night to share what makes our families unique and special here in the RIMSD41 district!

Ian Scott

Thomas Jefferson Principal

Take time to review and to reflect!

How They CQ: Rock Island High School 

Thurgood Marshall Learning Center

During the 4th quarter’s CQ Corner feature, we will highlight the culturally responsive activities and events that have happened, are happening, or will happen in our schools. 

This week’s CQ Spotlight is Rock Island High School & Thurgood Marshall Learning Center.


Thurgood Marshall Market Annual Clothing Giveaway 


In our ongoing effort to engage Thurgood Marshall Learning Center families while providing a much needed resource for the community, the school’s FACE team [Family and Community Engagement] with para-educator Johnna Gamble leading the charge, planned a clothing giveaway event that was held on March 28th. “Marshall Closet” has been supplying clothing, toiletries and basic essentials to students in need for many years, but this year marks the beginning of an annual event where parents can browse our substantial inventory of clean, new or lightly used clothing. All the items were received through generous donations. The event impacted eight families this year with clothing for toddlers through adults given to very appreciative recipients. In addition to Marshall Closet, Thurgood Marshall also provides food boxes every month to families in need via Marshall Market. It’s our objective to connect with families and provide fundamental resources to help them through difficult economic times.

Charlie Driscoll

TMLC Principal


Take time to review and to reflect!


clothing giveaway


RIHS Culture Fest: Many Cultures, One Rocky

Rocky's Culture Club hosted its inaugural CULTURE FEST last spring to showcase and celebrate the unique backgrounds, talents, and experiences of our students and community. The slogan for this year's event is Many Cultures, One Rocky, and it will be held at the high school on Wednesday, May 15th from 5:00 p.m.-7:30 p.m. CULTURE FEST will feature a variety of aspects of culture including food, music, dance, games, art, history, poetry, fashion, traditions, and literature. The event is free and open to all in the district and community!

RIHS Culture Club


cultural fest flyer


How They QC: Eugene Field

During the 4th quarter’s CQ Corner feature, we will highlight the culturally responsive activities and events that have happened, are happening, or will happen in our schools. 

This week’s CQ Spotlight is Eugene Field.

Taste of Eugene Field

The "Taste of Eugene Field'' is now an annual event, held this year on the evening of February 29th. The gymnasium was filled with our diverse families, many who set up tables spotlighting their own cultural heritage, including samples of cuisine and other traditions. Groups of students performed cultural dances on our stage. The evening culminated in a powerful native Aztecan dance, performed by a Eugene Field family - that resonated in our hearts. Parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins attended to experience the "taste" of Eugene Field! Many do not realize just how diverse our school of 435 students really is. 19 different home languages are represented by Eugene Field families - as well as American Sign Language. Over 16% of our families' preferred language is something other than English! We love the diversity of Eugene Field and are proud to spotlight our students and their families for the rich cultural traditions that they bring to our community. We are honored to serve our students and families at Eugene Field.

Jennifer Alongi

Principal, Eugene Field

Take time to review and to reflect!

Women’s History Month

“From the first settlers who came to our shores, from the first American Indian families who befriended them, men and women have worked together to build this nation. Too often, the women were unsung and sometimes their contributions went unnoticed. But the achievements, leadership, courage, strength and love of the women who built America were as vital as that  of the men whose names we know so well.” This is President Jimmy Carter’s message as he designated March 2-8 as National Women’s History Week. Eventually, in the late 1980s, Women’s History Week evolved into Women’s History Month. Below are a few Women’s History resources to explore:

Honoring Women's History Month

A Proclamation on Women’s History Month, 2024 | The White House

14 Inspiring Quotes #Women'sHistory

National Women's History Museum

Take time to review and to reflect!

Black History Month: Education

College, Career & Life Ready


Booker T. & W.E.B.

Milestones in African American Education provides a condensed view of the pathway to equal opportunities in education for African Americans. There have been immense struggles, and through it all, two prominent African American men who fought for equality in education were W.E.B. Dubois and Booker T. Washington. Dubois introduced the Talented Tenth Talented Tenth | Educational Concept | Britannica, a movement designed to develop the leadership capacity among the most able 10 percent of Black Americans. In contrast, Booker T. Washington emphasized the importance of industrial education which encouraged cultivating agricultural and industrial skills. 

The poem Booker T. and WEB by Dudley Randall | Poetry Foundation captures the essence of two powerful, yet differing perspectives on obtaining education in the Black community as obtaining quality education continued to be a struggle for African Americans.

Take time to review and to reflect!

Food Justice

“Service to others is the rent you pay for your room here on earth.”

author unknown

During this holiday season and beyond, there will be families who need a helping hand to provide the basic necessities for their households. Local organizations such as  NEST Cafe provide a space for people to receive nourishment “regardless of means.”  What Is Food Justice and Why Is It Necessary? from gives a global perspective of food insecurity. 

Basically, the need is great, so let’s take time to review, to reflect, and to take care of each other!

Native American Heritage Month

Native American Heritage Month

Native American Heritage Month is dedicated to celebrating the diverse culture, history, and traditions of the Native people. November was officially declared Native American Heritage Month in 1990 by former President George H. W. Bush. Every year since 1994, a new proclamation has been made. Read more about the history of Native American Heritage Month [].

Tedx-Native Americans: We Shall Remain

In observance of Native American Heritage Month, LoVina Louie, in her Tedx, Native Americans : We Shall Remain | LoVina Louie | TEDxCoeurdalene, uses story and song to explain what she views as the “historical root causes for challenges facing Native Americans”. As she mentions, LoVina is an enrolled member of the Schitsu’umsh Tribe. 

Take time to review and reflect!


Names Matter

According to American author Ralph Ellison, “It is through our names that we first place ourselves in the world. Our names, being the gift of others, must be made our own.” Indeed, when we meet someone new, our name is usually the first piece of information about ourselves that we share. It is often one of the first markers of our identity that others learn.  We use names to introduce the concept of identity and the idea that each of our identities is the product of the relationship between the individual and society.” (Facing History & Ourselves-My Part of the Story: Exploring Identity in the United States).

This @leadingells Pronouncing Student Names chart outlines  ways a student’s name may be handled if  it’s a name we are not used to pronouncing. It also provides pointers listed when faced with a student’s name that we can’t readily pronounce.

Take time to review and reflect!

Hispanic Heritage Month

September 15th marks the beginning of Hispanic Heritage Month, with September 16th being Mexican Independence Day. 

Every year from September 15 to October 15, Americans celebrate National Hispanic Heritage Month by appreciating the community’s history, heritage, and contributions of the ancestors of American citizens who came from Mexico, Spain, the Caribbean, and South- and Central America... (National Today).

Continue reading this article HISPANIC HERITAGE MONTH for more insight into the national observance of the Hispanic and Latino cultures. 

Take time to review and reflect!