The Cat's Connection

October 24, 2014

Learn from the past and look ahead

Recently I had the opportunity to discuss with our School Board the progress we are making and the accomplishments of which we are proudest. During the presentation, I reviewed our state report card for last school year, which can be viewed at the Oregon Department of Education website: or on our website under the links tab. Our report card shows that we scored a 4, which puts us above the state average compared to other middle schools.

One of my favorite sayings I used to hear from my own dad was, "Don't let yesterday take up too much of today." We are proud of many things here at LaCreole, and we celebrate our past success, yet we are very aware that the landscape for this school year has drastically changed and the challenge of transitioning toward the new Smarter Balanced Assessments will not be easy for our students. So, though it is good to know we are making progress, our steps have been to look briefly at the past year to evaluate our performance and how our efforts made us better or helped us identify room for growth.

We have since moved forward, looking at the learning needs of our kids in the present. Our staff believes the energy we committed to the building blocks of writing and math problem solving the past couple of years -- both areas in which our students have made a great deal of growth that is not reflected in the State Report Card -- are the things that will have a sustaining benefit to our students. Our students demonstrate the ability to organize their thinking at a higher level in all content areas. This is the kind of learning our students will need to be able to demonstrate increasingly more in school and in real life. So, despite the ever-changing target of measuring student growth in our world of education, I believe we are doing the right work for our students to ensure their academic progress not only now but in the future as well so they can be successful.

We have lofty goals for ourselves and our students, which is nothing new, and I am confident we will make even more progress this year. The number one thing of which I'm the proudest, and which I shared with our School Board, is our staff's unwavering high level of commitment to our students and their success.

Great Things Are Happening at LaCreole

Fall Spirit Week Dress-up Days! 10/27 - 10/31

Staff Spotlight

Meet Mrs. Shryer, Attendance Secretary

Linda Shryer, LaCreole’s amazing new Attendance Secretary, thoroughly enjoys her new job because she loves connecting with students and their families each and every day! She also loves the people she works with because everyone’s focused on doing what’s best for kids.

Family is important to Linda. Not only does she enjoy taking care of her LaCreole “family,” but she loves spending time with her husband, Larry, and two boys, Jeff and Jake. Jeff is serving in the Air Force in Misawa, Japan, and she is anxiously awaiting a visit from him during Christmas. In the meantime, she’s busy helping Jake, who’s a senior, explore options for college next year. In her spare time, she enjoys reading, being outdoors, and watching baseball come springtime.

Linda likes a challenge, and she likes the variety of work she does, but mostly Linda likes taking care of people, which is what Linda does best! Next time you are at LaCreole, stop by and hello to our wonderful Mrs. Shryer.

Class Updates

Creativity in Digital Arts

Digital Arts

After-School Science

We've had many students asking, "When do we get to dissect something?" Last year the answer was that we don’t really have standards that call for it. In PLCs we discussed student interest and the fact that we have a stockpile of “patients” needing dissection. Since we knew it wouldn’t be happening in class, we figured it would be an enriching after-school activity for those interested. Students were able to gain hands on science experience. We still have plenty of supply and demand and expect to do at least one more dissection event later this year, probably in the spring.

Student-Organized Learning in our 6th, 7th, and 8th Grade Technology Classes

Want a problem solved? Well, our kids can probably find a way to solve it for you! This past couple of weeks, our technology students have been taking part in what is called a Student Organized Learning Environment (SOLE) project. Given the question, "How are people scammed through the Internet?" students researched in groups, thinking critically to determine research strategies. They then collaborated on what information to share and created a group presentation. Lastly, they presented their conclusions to the principal. Our students used their digital literacy skills they have been learning in class, mixed with the theme of digital citizenship. Well done, technology students!

A Dallas Alum Has Got SOLE

7th Grade Science - Earthquake Simulations

Over the last weeks, seventh grade science has been evaluating the risks earthquakes and volcanoes pose to the Willamette Valley. Students then used what they had learned in the unit to create a public service announcement to help inform the public about these hazards.

7th Grade Language Arts

Our 7th grade language arts classes are currently listening to The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman. Our kids are excited about this engaging fantasy that centers around a boy who is the only living resident of a graveyard, raised by its inhabitants. The Graveyard Book is an award-winning novel -- winner of the Newbery Medal, the Carnegie Medal, and Hugo Award for Best Novel.

Rather than reading the book, kids are listening to the story and answering questions in preparation for the state reading test that requires students to listen and comprehend what they've heard. The book link and the questions are both posted on our website for easy use. Please go to: for these valuable resources.

Upcoming Events

Wildcat Spirit Week

Monday 10/27 through Friday 10/31


November 7 - District Assessment Day

November 10 - District Inservice Day

November 11 - Veterans Day

Have a wonderful long weekend!

LaCreole Food Drive to Support Dallas Area Christmas Cheer!

Monday, Nov. 3rd, 8am to Friday, Dec. 5th, 4pm

701 SE Lacreole Dr

Dallas, OR

Students will take part in our annual food drive to benefit our community. We work with our students to understand the needs of others and how they can have a positive impact in the lives of others in our community.

We are LaCreole! Stay Connected!

There are many ways to stay in touch with your school! We like to celebrate our great kids and all the great things going on at our school.