Message for Parents 4-30-17

Post date: May 2, 2017 7:13:25 PM




Office of the Superintendent

Telephone (207) 348-9100 Fax (207) 348-9103

“It takes a whole community to educate a child.”

Superintendent’s Memo To: DISES Parents & Guardians

From: Christian M. Elkington Re: Three VERY Important FYIs!

Date: 4-30-17

End of year calendar adjustments – Need to be made as a result of the number of school days called off this winter. Per state law our seniors must go 170 days before they graduate and so we need to make up one day before graduation on June 11th. The law was adjusted a few years ago to allow for an additional way to make up days and the School Board has given me permission to ask the Commissioner of Education to allow us to extend the school day 1 hour, for five consecutive days, per this state law. Unless you hear differently from me our plan will be to have the week of 5/15 having an extra hour added to each day Monday - Thursday and our then having a regular school day on Friday the 19th with no Early Release. By adding a day in this way it will make the last day of school Monday, June 19th with a 12:30 dismissal.

Hiring of new administrators – Is a concern that all of us has. With the resignation of Ms. Magoon as Principal of DISES we now have two administrative positions, along with Mr. Dow’s Assistant Principal position to fill in CSD 13. Your feedback and involvement will be an important part of the hiring process as we move forward. I will be asking our school board to approve a hiring timeline at this Tuesday, May 2nd school board meeting. Once approved I will share it with you and be asking for your involvement in our next steps. Please stay tuned!

Ending the school year on a strong note – Is most important for our students, for you our parents and guardians, for our staff and school and for CSD13! Following-through on our commitment to do the very best we can along with following-up on making improvements down the stretch will help finish our year on a strong note. It also sets the tone for the year to come! In talking with several of you along with our staff the overall perception of our school and school community is not as strong as it should and must be. I along with our staff know that these next 7 weeks are critical for our students, school and for us as a Learning Organization! Perception is reality and right now the perception that our school and district have is not as positive as it could, should and MUST be so that we can support our students’ growth and success! Painting a school, staff or district with a broad brush of negativity is not helpful and detracts from those who work extremely hard and give positive efforts each and every, but “perception is reality", and so it is most important for us to show you our parents & guardians what we are all about these next seven weeks! We as a staff, school and district need you to know that the professionals you have entrusted your children to, are committed to our craft and to your sons and daughters’ success. Over the next seven weeks we will ensure that the following will happen each and every time, or fix it when it doesn’t occur so as to recommit our determination in being the best that we can be: - Communication will be quick, thorough and proactive! We will let you know your son or daughter’s positives and/or concerns that we need to work together on in a timely manner. Our expectation moving forward is the "24 hr rule" in getting back to you. Within 24 hours we will return your email or call. The only exception will be if you contact one of us on a Friday we may not be able to return it until Monday. - Power School will be kept updated on a weekly basis! Teaching staff will make sure, starting this week, that this will be the expectation and will be letting you know which day Power School will be updated by them.

RTI Time seems to have some confusion around it with our parents and guardians. RTI blocks are an important intervention time, a time to reteach and for a student to relearn! These blocks are not down time, screen time for students or a study hall. If a student doesn't need RTI then it is our expectation that your son or daughter will receive extra support or ENRICHMENT! If you have a question about how your son or daughter is using their RTI time, please contact their teachers immediately. - Unit & Lesson Clarity – Information is an important way for our teaching staff to let our parents and guardians know what their plan is each week along with what is coming up during the following week or month! It is also a way for our parents and guardians who have a tutor working with their son/daughter to have information so that the tutor can better help the student. Several of our teachers send home a weekly newsletter, which is very helpful with the above. If your son or daughter’s teacher does not do this or if you need some extra information, it is our expectation that all you need to do is ask and our teachers will be more than happy to supply whatever information is needed by you! - We know there are no excuses – That are acceptable to you when it comes to the needs that our students, your children bring to school each and every day. There are only ideas and alternatives for us to propose or try in our efforts to improve what our/your children need to be able to do, how they need to act and what they need to learn. It is not our place to make excuses, but to come up with possible solutions as we move forward at DISES. I do not expect it to happen, but if one of the above is not followed-through with you must contact Ms. Magoon or Mr. Dow immediately so that we can make sure that you get the info you need and that the above expectations are followed-through with by each and every one of us! Thanks! Over the next seven weeks I look forward to our reinforcing our commitment to: - Our students (your sons and daughters) - Our parents & guardians - Our profession - Our communities! Thanks for listening!