October Principal's Message
I hope everyone has recovered from Homecoming. We had a very successful and enjoyable week. Our students showed a lot of school pride and our teachers maintained high expectations in the classroom. Now we turn the corner toward fall and near the end of first quarter.
We want to remind parents that Parent-Teacher Conferences are October 3rd and 4th. Time slots are filling up. Both days are 11:30a.m. dismissal days for students and conferences will be held 12:30p.m.-7:00p.m. There will be no school on October 5th or 8th. Conferences can be scheduled by calling Mrs. Bader in the office at 309-962-2911.
Last month, you heard a little about our Habits of Success initiative as a part of our instructional focus for this year. Our Habits of Success also tie into our other instructional focus initiative of investigating how our assessment and grading practices inform student learning. We are providing professional development resources and encouraging our teachers to pilot grading and assessment practices that are outside the traditional box of education. The intent of all grades should be to show evidence of student learning. We all know, even in our own education as kids, that this is not always the case. Even some of the sacred cows of educational grading, which can be very hard to change, are not the best practices at informing learning.
One example that a few of our teachers have decided to pilot in their classroom is the concept of redo’s or do overs. This is the concept where they emphasize the goal of learning content and content mastery. There are a few different ways teachers are trying this, but the basic concept is that kids have the opportunity to improve an assessment grade through a retake if they meet certain criteria. This criteria usually includes things like completing all homework, completing a request to reassess, working with the teacher one on one to learn the material, or doing something new to prepare differently for the reassessment.
We always encourage our teachers to be lifelong learners and work through professional development opportunities to improve their instructional practices. Learning today is vastly different from when we were in school and even five or ten years ago. It is a constant challenge to keep with instructional best practices, but we continue to provide resources and opportunities for our teachers to grow.
As a final note, if you follow us on Facebook or Twitter, you have seen us celebrating students and teachers with exemplary behaviors with #U2UB (Unit 2 Uniquely Better). Generally, all of our students and teachers do really good things, but our goal is to be truly unique in what we do. Through #U2UB, we recognize individuals and give them a “It’s All About the Maroon and Gold” t-shirt for being uniquely better. For a great explanation about #U2UB, check out Mr. Tipsord’s post on our district website: http://www.leroyk12.org/resources/from-the-superintendents-desk/profile/u2ub-an-infinite-game-against-ourselves
PM Parent-Teacher Conferences
No School – Columbus Day
End of 1st Quarter
No School – Thanksgiving