February marks mid-winter and the weather has certainly been a reminder. It also marks the middle of the academic year. I just want to say I appreciate everyone's hard work. Without the dedication of our faculty and staff, along with the support our students' families provide, the success of our students and the district would not be realized.
I truly appreciate the meaningful work that our teachers and staff members do every day. I am reminded of each and everyone's commitment as I watch our student musicians perform, as I walk through our schools, as I meet parents, as I sit in meetings with faculty members, and as I hear about success stories or issues that arise in our community. I know the challenges we face, the hours faculty dedicate to your schools, and the joy you experience watching students learn and grow.
Our teachers create new learning experiences for our students, preparing them for a lifetime of opportunities. They act as role models, motivators and mentors while embracing change. They meet the challenges of new curriculum, new technology and with every change they keep their timeless and crucial focus on the importance of educating students. This year alone they have implemented new opportunities for learning science, expanded the use of Google classroom, refined and strengthened the International Baccalaureate program, and they have increased the literacy levels of our elementary students by applying the workshop model used in writing to reading.
This edition of BToday contains several wonderful snapshots of student learning experiences captured this winter. We have so many good things happening within the district. We have hired new math interventionists at the elementary level, have started a new strategy to teach social studies and have also been looking for mentors within the community to help expand our students’ learning opportunities. If visiting Calvin Coolidge or Horace Mann Elementary, you may have the opportunity to meet an unusual mentor, a therapy dog. These dogs help students refocus and alleviate distress. It has been an eventful year for learning and I am proud to be at the helm during this exciting time. I look forward to seeing what the remainder of the year holds for the district and our students.
Tonia Thompson, Ed. D.