LSSU E-Newsletter September 20, 2018

A Message From Superintendent Tracy Wrend

The school year is off to a wonderful start. Students and staff are settling in and have had a productive few weeks reconnecting and getting back into the rhythms of the school day.

While it is easy to just focus on the good days, we must always be prepared for days when circumstances may change. The safety of our students is a top priority, and we plan and practice for a wide range of emergency situations.  If an unplanned event arises we will communicate with parents and guardians by phone, text and/or email using our emergency notification system. 

To learn more about school emergency terms and procedures used in all schools of LSSU please check out the School Emergency Guide for Parents and Guardians. In addition to information about standard response protocols, this guide provides recommended action steps that can be taken by parents or guardians when informed of an emergency at school.

On Tuesday, September 25, LSSU will be testing BrightArrow, our emergency notification system.  Alerts will be sent to the contact information we have on file, including email, text and voice phone.  Please contact Melissa Gillen (888-4541 Ext. 5559), Katy Voyer (888-4541 Ext. 5558) or your school office after the test  if there are adjustments that need to be made.

Thank you. As always, if anyone has any questions or concerns please do not hesitate to be in touch at [email protected].

Best,
Tracy

 

EMUU Board Brief
September 18, 2018

Welcome back to school! It’s great to see administration, faculty, staff and students back with the spirit and enthusiasm that is so evident in the district each year.

The EMUU board has been hard at work identifying goals for the 2018-2019 school year. This year we will be working to:

  • Improve opportunities for all students and close the achievement gap by focusing on the wellbeing and learning of all (such as PBIS);
  • Monitor the implementation of Proficiency Based Learning (PBL) and our progress toward personalization;
  • Revisit the capital plan for our schools, ensuring planning and prioritization based upon the educational needs of our students;
  • Monitor the implementation of a district-wide communication plan and work to improve community relations; and
  • Support and monitor school safety initiatives.

The board has had the opportunity to review the capital improvement projects made to our school grounds recently.  Highlights include the bandshell, the staircase leading into PA, a long-awaited walkway between MES and PA/PAML, the new bus loop and additional parking at MES.  Additionally, the road between MES and PA/PAML has been paved and potholes are no longer an issue. The MES kitchen has also been upgraded.

We continue to address challenges relating to students’ ability to be physically fit, active and learn together. Our current gymnasium space at PA/PAML is not up to code. We lack sufficient space to accommodate an indoor graduation ceremony, Memorial Day Observance, or an all-school assembly. It is inadequate for the physical education needs of our students. We will be making recommendations to address these issues in the future.

Please complete the survey available at Open House this year. We are seeking feedback on our Annual Meeting date and would appreciate your input. Open House dates and times are:

MES:  Thursday, October 4, from 5:30-6:30pm
PA and PAML:  Thursday, September 20, from 5:30-7:00pm

The board approved various overnight field trips for the 2018-2019 school year. These are great learning opportunities.  Board members discussed fundraising and financial supports to ensure that financial need is not a barrier for eligible student participation.  

Regular meetings of the EMUU School Board are held on the 1st and 3rd Tuesday of each month at 5:00 p.m. in the Morristown Elementary School library. Meetings are open to the public.

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LSSU’s E-Newsletter, including Board Briefs will be posted at https://www.lamoillesouthsu.org/blog.php the Thursday following each board meeting. You can read it there, or receive it directly by email by subscribing at https://www.lamoillesouthsu.org/blog.php. More detailed information regarding Elmore-Morristown Unified Union School Board meetings can be found in our board minutes: https://www.morrisville.org/emuu-school-board.php

 

SSD Board Brief
September 17, 2018

Now that we have a complete year of proficiency based learning completed, the board spent much of this meeting looking at last year’s high school GPA data, both in public and executive session. The great news is that all students receiving feedback at Stowe High School through our new proficiency system saw GPAs that reflected a range of student achievement consistent with prior years. In addition to similar rates of unique GPAs between students graded using the old and new systems, student GPAs followed similar distributions.  

GPA Update and Supports for Students Who Are Not Proficient
Principal Oleks presented information about the high school support systems that have been created to raise the performance of students identified as not proficient. New supports include: student and teacher teams, the use of student tutors, and summer classes. This past year, more services have been developed to address the needs of more students.

After reviewing data and information, the board unanimously agreed to the following statement:

After reviewing a scatter plot of the 2017-2018 9th and 10th grade GPAs (5.00 point GPA scale) and 11th and 12th grade GPAs (100.0 point GPA scale), the board affirms that there is sufficient granularity under the 5.00 point scale and that the distribution of student GPAs is similar under both systems. The board is confident that the 5.00 GPA scale will offer our students the same advantages in the college application process as our prior GPA calculating system. The board will continue to monitor GPA data.

Capital Project Committee
At the committee’s next meeting on September 26, Black River Design will present new school designs and financials. The committee plans to hold two additional meetings October 10 and 24; then provide a forum for community engagement, and finally present their recommendation to the board in November.

Subscribe
LSSU’s E-Newsletter, including Board Briefs will be posted at https://www.lamoillesouthsu.org/blog.php the Thursday following each board meeting. You can read it there, or receive directly by email by subscribing at https://www.lamoillesouthsu.org/blog.php.  More detailed information regarding Stowe School Board meetings can be found in our board minutes: https://www.stoweschoolsvt.com/ssd-school-board.php