Weekly Update from the Superintendent - January 12, 2018

tchurchill Fri, 01/12/2018 - 7:56am
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January 12, 2018

This weekly update includes information from the District Office and department staff regarding District operations and reminders.  It does not include updates or activities from each school site.

Office of the Superintendent:

Student Achievement Goals – The following student achievement goals were adopted as part of the 2018-2023 Strategic Plan for Meridian School District.  Please discuss these with your building Principal.

  • GOAL (1.1):  By 2023, the percentage of 3rd graders scoring proficient or distinguished on the Smarter Balanced English/Language Arts Assessment will be above the average of Whatcom County school districts.
  • GOAL (1.2):  By 2023, the percentage of 5th graders scoring proficient or distinguished on the Smarter Balanced Math Assessment will be above the average of Whatcom County school districts.
  • GOAL (1.3):  By 2023, 9th grade course failures will be below the average of Whatcom County school districts as measured by the OSPI 9th Grade Course Failure Performance Indicator.
  • GOAL (1.4):  By 2023, the percentage of students attending post high school education will be above the average of Whatcom County school districts while the percentage of those enrolled in remedial courses will be below the average of Whatcom County school districts as measured by Washington ERDC (Education Research Data Center) data.
  • GOAL (1.5):  By 2023, on-time and extended graduation rates will be above the average of Whatcom County school districts as measured by the OSPI Graduation Rates Performance Indicator. 
  • GOAL (1.6):  By 2023, chronic absenteeism will be below the average of Whatcom County school districts as measured by the OSPI Chronic Absenteeism Performance Indicator.
  • GOAL (1.7):  By 2023, suspension and expulsion rates will be below the average of Whatcom County school districts as measured by the OSPI Discipline Performance Indicator.
  • GOAL (2.1):  By 2023, improved student supports will be implemented to raise the performance of non-white students, students who qualify for free/reduced lunch, English language learners and students with disabilities in order to reduce by 50% current achievement and performance gaps between White and Non-White students; students who qualify for free/reduced lunch and those who do not; English language learners and native English speakers; and students with disabilities and those without disabilities as measured by the OSPI Performance Indicators and state assessments in the following areas:
  • 3rd grade reading & 5th grade math
  • 9th grade course failure rates
  • On-time and extended graduation rates
  • Chronic absenteeism rates
  • Suspension and expulsion rates

Artwork Dedication at IRE – On Thursday the new artwork, provided by the Washington State Arts Commission, Art in Public Places grant at IRE was dedicated.  The artwork signifies a connection with the salmon habitat in Ten Mile Creek.

Thank you to the artist, Greg Ragland and the District arts committee for their work in bringing this project to completion. Thank you to Brian Stephan and our maintenance staff for assisting in the installation. If you have questions regarding this project, please contact Connie Bennum at IRE.

School Board:
Renier Elenbaas – Congratulations to Renier Elenbaas who took the oath of office and was officially sworn in as a School Board Director at the School Board meeting on January 10th.

Next Regular Board Meeting - The next regular School Board meeting is at 7:00 PM on Wednesday, January 24, 2018. Board meetings are held in the Professional Development/Board Room at MHS.  All staff members are invited and welcome to attend School Board meetings.   Meeting agendas and minutes can be accessed via a link from the District web site or at http://www.boarddocs.com/wa/msdwa/Board.nsf/Public

Human Resources: (Kurt Harvill, Director of Personnel, Grants and Risk Management)

January 26 is a non-student day.  – January 26th is a contractual workday for MEA employees as per Article IX, Section 13C of the CBA.  It is a normal work day for all year around employees including those in MCEA and PSE.  It is a non-work day for all other employees. If you have any questions please call Kurt Harvill or Julie Dodd at the District Office.

Business Office: (Daniel Yorton, Director of Business Services)

Fiscal Year - The Finance Department has “rolled” the fiscal year in Skyward to 2017/18.  Now when employees enter items such as requisition, the default year will be 2017/18.  If you have any questions, please contact Daniel Yorton, Finance Director.

Teaching and Learning: (Patti Fouts, Director of Teaching and Learning)

Revisiting Team Norms – In the October 6, 2017 edition of  the Superintendent's Weekly Update the Teaching and Learning section introduced the rationale for establishing team norms and provided a plan for teams to address inevitable norms violations.

Now the New Year provides a time to reflect, reassess and plan forward.  In your PLC teams, please revisit your team norms.  Then please review the attached resources to assist your team in asking the questions necessary to reflect on the effectiveness of your team norms, revising norms as needed, and moving the work of your team forward.  

Consider asking and answering the following questions in your team:

  • What norms do we usually observe well?
  • Which ones do we seem to ignore?
  • What behaviors are team members using now that seem to be useful?
  • What behaviors surprise us or make us uneasy?
  • Based on our answers to these questions, what norms do we need now? List & publish them.

 

My Favorite FLOTUS Quote of the Week:  “You judge a society by how it treats its citizens. We must do our best to ensure that every child can live in comfort and security, with the best possible education.”  (Melania Trump)