I have invited NRHEG Elementary Principal Doug Anderson to share highlights from the Elementary School with you this month. Thank you to Mr. Anderson and the Elementary School staff for all they do for our students!
A reminder that the School Board conducts its regular monthly meeting on the third Monday of each month. The location of the meeting is rotated monthly between the NRHEG Secondary School Media Center in New Richland and the NRHEG Elementary School Media Center in Ellendale. The August 15, 2016 School Board meeting will be at the Secondary School beginning at 6:30 p.m.
Thank you for all you do in support of students!
NRHEG Elementary Happenings
By Doug Anderson, NRHEG Elementary School Principal
How quickly the 2015-2016 school year passed and in just a very short time we will begin the 2016-2017 school year. My purpose in sharing this article with you is to reflect on the elementary events of the past year and to then provide you with a glimpse into the upcoming year.
As I replay this past school year there are two items that come to mind as areas of emphasis for our staff, which also then had a positive effect on our students. As a staff we focused on providing intentional and deliberate interventions for our struggling readers in grades K-2. We also spent this year writing Common Summative Assessments that align with the Minnesota State Standards in mathematics.
Our Title 1 (Federal program that provides financial assistance to school districts with a high percentage of students from low-income families) staff was trained on literacy interventions, and our students showed increased growth and proficiency. Regular data meetings facilitated by Title 1 staff and classroom teachers allowed everyone involved in working with each child to have the opportunity to learn of the progress of each child and to be involved in determining interventions and support for continued success.
Each grade level also developed Common Summative Assessments that are aligned with the Minnesota State Standards in math to determine student proficiency and growth in mathematics. At the end of each quarter teachers administered the assessments, which provided them information on student success, and provided a road map for those students needing continued intervention and support.
No doubt from a student perspective a highlight from this past year would be the fund-raising efforts in which the Parent-Teacher Organization (PTO) and Playground Committee secured funds toward the purchase of new playground equipment at the elementary. Due to an unbelievable generous response from the NRHEG communities and beyond, our students will have two new playground sets on which to play when school starts in September. Thank you for your generous support and dedication to our NRHEG Elementary students! It will be appreciated and enjoyed for years to come.
Looking ahead to the 2016-2017 school year we will focus on our district’s newly written mission statement, which is Empowering students with knowledge and skills to succeed. We will continue to focus our efforts and professional development on increased student growth and achievement. Using our most recent data, we will begin the process of reviewing our current math curriculum and its effectiveness in meeting the State Standards. Also, we will begin the process of writing common summative assessments for reading and language arts.
We will also continue to have an emphasis on our Professional Learning Communities (PLCs) and how they assist us as school staff in meeting the needs of our students. Nancy Remmert, professional consultant, will be working with our staff throughout the year and will focus on the following areas:
• Clarifying the “right work” of PLCs
• Identifying Power Standards
• Writing Learning Targets
• Evaluating proficient student work
As we close out the 2015-2016 school year and prepare to usher in the 2016-2017 school year, I am honored to reflect on what we’ve accomplished and excited to anticipate the new challenges and opportunities that will present themselves. I thank you for the support that you’ve provided to our students and staff this past school year. I would also invite you to stop in and visit our school and observe first-hand the great things that are happening at the elementary. You could even stop and check out the newly installed playground equipment!