Cybersecurity Awareness Month

Since 2004, the President of the United States and Congress have declared October to be Cybersecurity Awareness Month, helping individuals protect themselves online as threats to technology and confidential data become more commonplace. The Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) and the National Cybersecurity Alliance (NCA) lead a collaborative effort between government and industry to raise cybersecurity awareness nationally and internationally.

Cybersecurity Awareness Month Theme
See Yourself in Cyber

This year’s campaign theme — “See Yourself in Cyber” — demonstrates that while cybersecurity may seem like a complex subject, ultimately, it’s really all about people . This October will focus on the “people” part of cybersecurity, providing information and resources to help educate CISA partners and the public, and ensure all individuals and organizations make smart decisions whether on the job, at home or at school – now and in the future. We encourage each of you to engage in this year’s efforts by creating your own cyber awareness campaigns and sharing this messaging with your peers.

For individuals and families, we encourage you to See Yourself taking action to stay safe online. That means enabling basic cyber hygiene practices: update your software, think before you click, have good strong passwords or a password keeper, and enable multi-factor authentication (meaning you need "More Than A Password!") on all your sensitive accounts.

Cybersecurity Basics

Now is a great time to put your cybersecurity knowledge to the test.  See what you know with Cybersecurity 101 reviewing cyber basics, potential threats, and how criminals lure you in.

  • Think Before You Click: Recognize and Report Phishing: If a link looks a little off, think before you click. It could be an attempt to get sensitive information or install malware.
  • Update Your Software: Don't delay -- If you see a software update notification, act promptly. Better yet, turn on automatic updates.
  • Use Strong Passwords: Use passwords that are long, unique, and randomly generated. Use password managers to generate and remember different, complex passwords for each of your accounts. A passwords manager will encrypt passwords securing them for you!
  • Enable Multi-Factor Authentication: You need more than a password to protect your online accounts, and enabling MFA makes you significantly less likely to get hacked.



The Skokie Health Department has advised us that, for each school building:
  1. Two confirmed COVID-19 positive individuals in one classroom is considered an outbreak and the entire class will be quarantined for 14 days. Day 1 is the day after last exposure to the confirmed case.
  2. Two classrooms with positive cases would signal caution.
  3. If 3 classrooms have confirmed cases, the Skokie Health Department asks us to temporarily return school to remote learning for 14 days.
  4. Siblings of quarantined individuals and siblings of individuals that are quarantined due to an exposure are considered a "contact of a contact" and may continue to attend in-person learning.
Niles West High School Hate has no Home Here

Hate Has No Home at D219

June 22, 2021

Dear D219 Students and Families,

Several weeks ago, Niles Township High School District 219 put up large "Hate Has No Home Here" banners at both Niles North and Niles West. We did this to send the message to our school community that we want all of our students to feel emotionally safe and welcome in our schools, regardless of their race, ethnicity, religion, physical ability, sexual orientation/gender identity, or any other signifier that any individual student identifies with.

Because we have an incredibly diverse group of students, representing all parts of the world and every conceivable ideology and belief system, we want to provide an environment where ALL our students feel emotionally safe in our schools and therefore can concentrate on the teaching and learning that is our reason for being.

Over the past several weeks we have been receiving many comments of concern from both Jewish and Muslim families telling us they do not believe that their students are being emotionally supported or made to feel safe in our schools. With the recent flare-ups of violence related to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, we have had students and families ask our teachers and our schools to “address” the conflict. We have had other families and community members tell us that it is not our job as the local public high school to “address” problems in other parts of the world over which we have no control. Yet other family members and community members tell us that even bringing up the conflict is too divisive, and therefore, we should not talk about it at all, unless it can be done in a controlled, responsible and even-handed way.

  • We want all of our students to feel safe and welcome in our schools.

  • We know we cannot control what happens outside our community, much less in other parts of the world. However, we can control how we treat each other in Niles Township High School District 219.

  • We hear our Muslim and Jewish families, as we hear our Black families, Indigenous families, Latinx families, Asian families and all families who are concerned.

  • We categorically reject anti-Semitism, and any acts or hateful speech against Jewish people.

  • We categorically reject Islamophobia, and any acts or hateful speech against Muslim people.

  • Unfortunately, hate crimes against people based on their identity are increasing across the board.

  • We categorically reject anti-Blackness, anti-Asian hate, and any other kinds of hateful acts or rhetoric based on a person’s religion, personal beliefs, race, ethnicity, physical ability, sexual orientation/gender identity, political affiliation, etc.

  • Hate has no home here at D219.

What does feeling safe in our schools mean? Different people have different ideas of what “feeling safe” means, and there is no simple answer.

Our families are asking us to do more to make their children feel emotionally safe and to publicly state our support. Let us reiterate: we support all our families and the diverse cultures they represent. In order to be responsive to the needs of our students and families, we plan to invite groups to talk with us about what specific actions we can take and programs we can develop to better meet their needs. We will share more details in the near future.

Thank you.

Steven Isoye
Superintendent of Schools

Karen Ritter
Niles West Principal

James Edwards
Niles North Principal