STUDENT SERVICES

DECEMBER 2017 NEWSLETTER

WELCOME

We hope that everyone has had a successful school year! It is hard to believe that it is already the holiday season. The student services and special education departments have been very busy with the creation and implementation of several initiatives and programs this year. You can read about some of these in this newsletter.


We also have some exciting events that are coming up in the near future:

  • In January, we are sponsoring our popular annual Love and Logic Parenting Class, offered by instructors Cindy and Bill Verschay. Note that babysitting is available for each night.
  • Our next Child Find Screening is scheduled for February 6th from 9:00 - 11:00. Join us as we celebrate February birthdays!

NEW STUDENT SERVICES/SPECIAL EDUCATION PROFESSIONAL STAFF

We are delighted to announce the following new staff:


Joseph Deegan: Psychologist-Garfield and DAC (District Assessment Coordinator)

Angela Bartels: Occupational Therapist-Sunrise, Marinette Middle and High Schools

Kaitlyn Raymer: Speech and Language Therapist-Sunrise

Katie Morois: School Counselor at the Marinette High School

Chelsea Korpi: School Counselor at the Marinette High School

Anne Langlois: Psychologist-Marinette High School, Merryman

Katie Rabas: Social Worker-Garfield, Park

Charlie Siem: Special Education teacher-Marinette Middle School

Shannon Sexton: Social Worker-Marinette Middle School


We are thrilled with the addition to our student services staff. Having additional school social workers and school psychologists in our buildings will enhance programming through comprehensive student and parental engagement.

SCHOOL-BASED MENTAL HEALTH SUPPORT

The district continues to partner with two mental health agencies, CESA 8 Brand New Day and Bellin Psychiatric through the provision of comprehensive therapy services. The expertise and support these agencies provide to children and families is meaningful, relevant, and significant. Many mental health issues are best addressed by certified mental health specialists; thus, the partnership with mental health personnel is proving to be vital for the wellbeing of our students and families.


These confidential sessions are conveniently scheduled in your child’s school. Please contact a student services staff member, your child’s teacher, or your building administrator if you are interested in finding out more about our school-based mental health services.


DATES TO REMEMBER

School will be closed December 25-January 1 for the Christmas holiday.

No school for students on January 26, 2018.

No school for students on February 12, 2018.

March 5th-9th, no school, Spring Break.

School closed Friday, March 30th for Easter Break.

UPCOMING EVENTS

Following are some events that will be coming up this year. Additional information will be available closer to the date of each event.


Parenting the Love & Logic Way: Tuesdays 6:00-8:00 pm January 9, 16, 23, 30, 2018 at Menekaunee Sunrise Early Learning Center. To make reservations contact Tina at: 715-735-1408 EMAIL: tpivatto@marinette.k12.wi.us


Child Find Screening:

Birthday Celebration

at Menekaunee Sunrise Early Learning Center

Tuesday, February 6th

9-11 am

RESERVE your spot by contacting:

Lori at 715-735-2700, EMAIL: lluitze@marinette.k12.wi.us

Dawn at 715-735-2716, EMAIL: dfermani@marinette.k12.wi.us


Strengthening Families: Dates and times to be determined

NEW INITIATIVES

SMART PROGRAM: Through SMART, which stands for Stimulating, Maturity, Accelerated, Readiness, and Training, students learn the fundamentals of learning. This program uses brain stimulation exercises to help children’s bodies become ready to learn. The students increase readiness skills to allow them to be optimal learners, which will improve pre-reading, math skills, fine motor coordination, attention, and focus.


We have piloted SMART at Menekaunee Sunrise Elementary Learning Center and in select grades at the elementary schools and have already witnessed amazing results. Our hope is to expand the SMART program for all elementary schools at the start of 2018-19 school year.


COMMUNITY-BASED EARLY CHILDHOOD (EC) PROGRAMMING: Our talented special education teams (including our EC teacher, Speech and Language Pathologist, Occupational Therapist, & Physical Therapist) are serving our 3 year olds and some 4 year olds in their natural settings, such as in homes, private daycares and Head Start programs. This is typically the best place to work with these children, as this is where they naturally spend their time - often with other children their same age. This new approach is working very well and we continue to meet regularly to ensure the provision of optimal services to our youngest Marines. We also offer parent networking meetings every Tuesday morning at Sunrise. Led by School Social Worker Naomi Adams, our staff facilitates these sessions that focus on sharing ideas and experiences, discussing parenting solutions, and engaging in camaraderie with other parents. If you have any questions about this new method of programming or are interested in partnering with us, please contact Cynthia Russell Smith, Director of Student Services, at 715-735-1409.



SPEECH AND LANGUAGE RtI: Because language is a learned skill, we have discovered the importance of focusing on teaching our students at Menekaunee Sunrise Elementary Learning Center the appropriate use and practice of language. Trained staff are now working alongside our teachers, providing small group language intervention (listening and speaking) for those children who might need an extra boost. This SL Response to Intervention (RtI) is modeled from the academic and behavioral RtI system that has been implemented across the district. If you have any questions about this new initiative, please contact Hollie Jersey, Menekaunee Sunrise ELC Coordinator @ 715-735-2701.


LIFE SKILLS TRANSITION: HOUSE RENTAL: This year our Community Advantage Program (for students with disabilities ages 18-21, learning independent living skills) and our newly implemented Skills for Life Program (for students with disabilities who need to learn independent living skills and job skills) have combined programs for a mutual cause.


Rather than renting an apartment again this year, the district decided that renting a house would be most beneficial for meeting student needs. Both programs focus on community engagement: doing things for the community and teaching students the skills they need to be ready for independent living and working. We feel that the house will provide more relevant real-life experiences for our students. So far, this new venture has been highly successful!

MAINTAINING YOUR MENTAL HEALTH THIS HOLIDAY SEASON!


  • Stick to normal routines as much as possible.
  • Get enough sleep.
  • Take time for yourself, but don't isolate yourself. Spend time with supportive, caring people.
  • Eat and drink in moderation. Don't drink alcohol if you are feeling down.
  • Get exercise-even if it's only taking a short walk.
  • Make a to-do list. Keep things simple.
  • Set reasonable expectations and goals for holiday activities such as shopping, cooking, entertaining, attending parties or sending holiday cards.
  • Set a budget for holiday activities. Don't overextend yourself financially in buying presents.
  • Listen to music or find other ways to relax.

REMEMBER

The holiday blues are short-term. Be patient. Take things week by week or day by day!

Tips from the National Alliance on Mental Health (NAMI)

RECYCLING PROGRAM

Please help us out by recycling your items and supporting our libraries at the same time. Our schools participate in the CFK recycling program that recycles cell phones, laser & inkjet cartridges, laptops, iPods, tablets, ereaders, notebook computers, ipads, etc. There are only certain types of recycling that we can accept. Please check the CFK list here http://cfktoday.com/recyclelists.html before bringing your items to the school Library Media Center for recycling.

THE STUDENT SERVICES/SPECIAL EDUCATION DEPARTMENTS WISH YOU A JOYOUS HOLIDAY SEASON!