Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Summer Letter

What might be possible for Hixson Middle School, next year and beyond? How can we strengthen our relationships, with one another and with and among our students? And in what ways might we create a more just and equitable school?

These three questions emerged as themes from the 300 post-it notes I collected from the one-on-one conversations I had with many of you (forty-four, to be precise) last spring. I am excited, energized, and challenged by this feedback, and I used this information to craft our School Improvement Plan. Even with this plan, you might wonder: What are we working on? What are we working toward?

Briefly, we will build on our knowledge of The Art and Science of Teaching as it relates to student learning and to our new teacher observation instrument. We will learn (more) together about our instruction and Response to Intervention as it relates to student learning and about technology as we anticipate a 1:1 computer environment. Several teachers have dedicated their time, work, and vision to supporting these projects.

When I think about what we are working toward, I always think about the learners in the building. I think about our students deserving the best we can offer them and about the power of learning no matter what our role.  I believe that the adults and the children who are a part of our community are excellent and capable people and that taking risks and trying new things will support all of the learners in the building.

In addition to considering these big ideas, the beginning the year always includes administrative tasks. This year, the new WGSD teacher observation instrument is online. You may opt out of a  required faculty meeting on August 9th if you set up your account, etc., ahead of time.  More details are listed in the “Beginning the Year” post on the Network (hxnetwork.blogspot.com).  There you will find other details affecting next year, including a standard Hixson-wide practice for assessment re-takes and updates for the beginning of school on the Hixson Staff Calendar. Be sure to read this post before Opening Day.

Our newest colleagues to the building will benefit from our support as they engage in the work of Hixson Middle School with us.  I am looking forwarding to introducing the following on August 7th:

  • Jessica Warneke, Spanish
  • Linda Krygiel, SSD
  • Eric Conners, Drama,
  • Jamie Wright, School Psychologist
  • Liz Majino, English-Language Arts,
  • Jim Griffard, Social Worker
  • Michael Dunsmoor, Orchestra
  • Krista Pappert, SSD

It is my hope that learning and the learners we serve provide us with a source of energy and focus as we engage ambitious projects with powerful actions. In this way, with this mission, our results will be remarkable.

With great expectations for all that is possible,
Jason 


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