Greetings Meridian Students, Families and Community!

Can you believe we are already starting the third week of September! It is moving quickly. There are a few new topics this week and some recurring topics we bring forward each year:

Communication Survey
Thank you to all who responded to our communication survey. There are a number of themes emerging from the feedback that is not surprising – like the district website is due for updating. (In fact, we are working on that currently. There should be progress in this area soon.) We also anticipated the feedback about school communication not being consistent from each building and are working on protocols to improve that aspect from our end. As you can imagine, what some would prefer is also what others would like to avoid. For instance, some requested an increase in the frequency of emails and others asked us not to send any more emails. There were favorable comments about principals leaving voice mails about things happening at their school, as well as requests to reserve such messages for true emergencies. It is not lost on us that we have a small sampling of the total population of the district families providing this feedback – which is still incredibly helpful. We did think there would be more emphasis on social media and less on the district newsletters. The opposite occurred. We were also surprised to see Instagram is not as heavily used by our respondents. We also received feedback from our dual-language families to have more information translated online, provide more hard copies and increase access to school leaders with translators on-hand.

We closed the survey yesterday and gathered this information today. We still have some work to do in establishing our communication protocols. Finally, we are also intent on increasing the proactive nature of our communications. We recognize the need to share information earlier prior to an event and more consistently. This is very helpful information for us to move forward and structure our outreach from the district. Thanks to all who provided feedback. It is greatly appreciated.

The questions:

1. Are you a parent, student, or community member in the Meridian School District?

  • We had over 180 respondents;
  • Of those, 87% of our responses were from parents.

2. Where do you currently get your district news?

  • 23% get their news from our district website;
  • 25% get it from the district Facebook page;
  • 3% get their news from our district Instagram account;
  • 43% get their information from the district newsletter;
  • 6% other.

3. Where would you like to get your district news?

  • 20% indicated they would prefer their news from our district website;
  • 24% indicated they would prefer their news from our district Facebook page;
  • 4% indicated they would prefer their news from our district Instagram account;
  • 44% indicated they would prefer their news from the district newsletter;
  • 8% indicated some other source.

4. What is something you feel we could do to strengthen communication between the school district and the community?

There were several themes shared. They are listed below – in no particular order…

  • Email us more frequently;
  • Don’t email us more – it’s too much;
  • Some building updates are redundant and not helpful;
  • Dual language families like to have content translated;
  • Would like more consistency of the building communication;
  • We appreciate voice messages from some principals;
  • Reserve blanket robocalls (voice messages) for emergencies – otherwise it creates panic;
  • Put the same information on each platform so there is a layering of content;
  • We appreciate the voice messages from buildings;
  • Difficult to get ahold of people at the district office;
  • Dual language families would like opportunities to meet with school leaders with translators;
  • The website is out of date and needs support;
  • Surveys are positive – and we would like them more often;
  • Provide more dual-language families with hard copies of content;
  • Provide more advanced notice for events. We want to receive notifications earlier.
  • We would like more consistent open house offerings to connect with teachers and staff.


Hall Pass School Tour – Postponed!

To date, there have not been many responses for the Hall Pass School Tour, which was scheduled for this Wednesday. We wonder if it is too close to the beginning of the school year and so are moving the event a few weeks later – into October.

 

YOU are invited to a special tour of Meridian School District schools on Thursday, October 10th!

Come see what Meridian schools look like in 2019. Receive an overview of district operations and see students and teachers at work in their classrooms. See the upgrades to our Middle School and Irene Reither Elementary campuses, as well as the Athletic Wall of Fame and the Legacy Hall of History at MHS. Additional fun—ride a school bus and have a complimentary school lunch!

  • Meet and chat with Superintendent Dr. James Everett, who will lead the tour.
  • Ride a big yellow school bus to each school.
  • Have a 20-minute guided walking tour at each school (MHS, MMS, IRE, and MP3) with the school principal.
  • Enjoy a box lunch at MHS at the end of the tour provided by the Meridian School District

The tour will begin at 9:30 am at the School Board Room on the MHS campus. We will visit our schools via a school bus and will end back at MHS at 12:00 pm. To reserve a “Hall Pass” contact Kaitlyn Michaelson at 360-398-7111 or via e-mail at kmichelson@meridian.wednet.edu.

Attendance Awareness Month

September is Attendance Awareness Month! We are emphasizing great attendance in our newsletters and with all of our students. It’s incredibly important for our students to be present and active in learning – and that starts with great attendance! It’s about lost instruction, not whether an absence is excused or not. Students can’t learn if they aren’t in school. Students who average missing more than 2 days of school a month are at a distinct disadvantage to achieving grade-level progression. Please take a few minutes to visit Attendance Works – an informative website developed to address issues around attendance and provide practical support for students and families.

STUFF THE BUS Campaign
Each year Meridian School District does a phenomenal job collecting food and non-perishables for our community through the STUFF THE BUS program. This year our campaign will run in early October. We will be sharing more information as we get closer through our Facebook presence, Meridian School District #505, as well as each building’s bulletins, newsletters, and other communication channels.