Weekly Update from the Superintendent - December 15, 2017

tchurchill Fri, 12/15/2017 - 8:18am
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December 15, 2017

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:

2018-2023 Strategic Plan Adopted by the Board of Directors – At the School Board meeting on December 13th the Board of Directors adopted a new Strategic Plan for 2018-2023.  You may view it using this link.  It is also posted on the front page of the District web site. 

Please review this new Strategic Plan as it is an important document that sets the priorities and will guide our collective professional work over the next five years. Let me know if you have any questions. Thank you to all the District employees and community members who provided input during the development process for this new plan.

School Board:

Next Regular Board Meeting - The next regular School Board meeting is at 7:00 PM on Wednesday, January 10, 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

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

December Pay Date – The December pay date is Friday December 29, the last business day of the month. Happy Holidays from the Finance Department!

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

Social Media - Although the First Amendment protects your speech as a private citizen on matters of public concern, such speech may fall outside of First Amendment protection if it "impedes your employer's effectiveness or efficiency, or otherwise disrupts the workplace." Please avoid posting anything about your colleagues, administrators, or students, as well as using inappropriate or profane messages or graphics, or anything that would reflect negatively on your workplace.

Winter Break - The District Office will be closed during Winter Break, December 18th – January 2, 2018.  It is common for District Office staff to schedule vacations during Winter Break, so if you want to meet with a specific staff member it is recommended to call or email ahead for an appointment.

Board Policies and Procedures - Throughout the school year, the School Board updates and adopts new policies and procedures. These policies and procedures govern how the District operates and are divided into seven (7) sections and are usually based on state law or policy.  The seven (7) sections are: Planning, Board of Directors, Instruction (such as graduation requirements and curriculum), Students (programs, corrective actions, and attendance), Community Relations, Personnel, and Management Support.  These policies and procedures are all located on the Meridian website at http://www.meridian.wednet.edu/node/88 .   

Maintenance: (Brian Stephan, Maintenance Supervisor)

Building Security During Winter Break - The maintenance department wants to wish all Happy Holidays!  Also remember if you do enter any buildings over the break that you are responsible for de-arming and re-arming the alarm system if there are no custodians working in the buildings.

Special Services: (Dr. Carolyn Jenkins, Director of Special Services)

The Best Gifts to Give

  • To an enemy, forgiveness.
  • To an opponent, understanding.
  • To a friend, your heart.
  • To our families, service.
  • To our students, a good example
  • To everyone, the best of ourselves
  • To ourselves, respect

May each of you find moments to rest, refresh and renew as you celebrate the Season. 

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

Re-teaching Behavior Expectations After Winter Break - As we approach winter break, take a moment to reflect upon and celebrate what students have accomplished as a result of your individual and collective efforts as educators.  Your work is THE most important work!

In preparation for the return to school in the New Year, please prepare to explicitly re-teach classroom expectations and all classroom routines.  Research has shown that students of all ages benefit from re-teaching of expectations and routines after a break from school.  

Following are resources related to the importance of re-teaching routines and expectations following breaks from school:  

Set students up for success for the months between winter and spring breaks by taking the time to review and reinforce classroom expectations.  The time invested up front will yield positive results.  

My Favorite FLOTUS Quote of the Week:  “You never know what you can do until you have to do it.” (Betty Ford)