Bulldog Bytes

A Newsletter for Employees of the Mexico59 11/18/15

Dear Mexico 59 Staff:

With Holiday Season fast approaching, and this being the last edition of Bulldog Bytes before Thanksgiving, I had thoughts about writing a letter of thanks to you. Before I set to writing, this gem appeared in my inbox from author Seth Godin (my favorite book of his is Tribes). There is no way I could say anything better. So please, read on. Enjoy. Have a great Thanksgiving next week! --Kevin

A Thanksgiving Reader

In ten days, just about everyone in the United States will celebrate the best holiday of the year: Thanksgiving. I’m hoping that this year, you and your family will help me start a new holiday tradition.

At its best, this is a holiday about gratitude, about family and about possibility. It brings people together to not only celebrate the end of the harvest, but to look one in another in the eye and share something magical.

In a digital age, one where humanity has been corrupted by commerce at every turn, there are very few Thanksgiving piñatas stuffed with coins, no huge market in Thanksgiving wrapping paper, no rush to the stores. We mostly save that for the next day, when the retail-industrial establishment kicks into high gear.

I’m delighted to point you to the Thanksgiving Reader . The file you'll find there is free, it’s printable, it’s sharable and it might give us something universal and personal to do this Thanksgiving.

The idea is simple: At your Thanksgiving celebration (and yes, it’s okay to use it outside the US!), consider going around the table and having each person read a section aloud.

During these ten or fifteen minutes, millions of people will all be reading the same words, thinking about the same issues, connecting with each other over the essence of what we celebrate. After all the travel and the cooking and the hassle, for these ten or fifteen minutes, perhaps we can all breathe the same air and think hard about what we’re thankful for.

It’s free to download and share. I hope you’ll let some people in your life know about it and incorporate it in your celebration this year. There’s no commercial element involved—after all, it’s Thanksgiving.

Please share. And we're happy to hear your suggestions.

Thank you for everything you do, and for the difference you make to your family and the people who care about you.

[and for international readers...]

Wherever you are, you could celebrate Thanksgiving today. Or any day.

Not the Thanksgiving of a bountiful Massachusetts harvest before the long winter, the holiday of pilgrims and pie. That's a holiday of scarcity averted. I'm imagining something else...

A modern Thanksgiving would celebrate two things:

The people in our lives who give us the support and love we need to make a difference, and...

The opportunity to build something bigger than ourselves, something worth contributing to. The ability to make connections, to lend a hand, to invent and create.

There are more of both now than there have ever been before. For me, for you, for just about all of us. Thank you.

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Deadwood Dick or the Game of Gold

Everyone is invited to attend the MHS Theatre Department's Production of "Deadwood Dick or the Game of Gold"

Friday night and Saturday night 7pm
Sunday 2:30 pm.

Adults $10
Students $5 k-12
Doors open 30 minutes before.

Board of Education Meeting 11/17/15 Recap

Board of Education Meeting - November 2015

Superintendent’s Notes: Remember to view the agenda or any of the associated documents or reports, click on the board meeting link above or go to the district homepage, to the very bottom of the page, where it says “eBoard paperless board meetings.”

Prior to the board meeting, some of the board members met with the administration to discuss the study authored in 2000 about effective school board/superintendent team behaviors entitled The Lighthouse Inquiry: School Board/Superintendent team behaviors in school districts with extreme differences in student achievement.

Board meeting was called to order and the Pledge of Allegiance recited.

Agenda was then adopted.

Staff & Patron Input included recognition of four support staff retirees:

--Randy Baclesse - Custodian, 34-years of service

--Roberta Cooley - Playground Aide/Office Aide, 5-years of service

--Junior David - Maintenance Worker, 30-years of service

--Warren "Randy" Williams - Custodian, 26-years of service

Thank you each for your years of service to MPS. You will be missed!

The November 2015 MSBA Board Report was then viewed. This included information about:

--Crisis communications

--Family and community engagement

--Filing for April board elections

--Video contest winner Branson HS

President's Comments is a time in the agenda when each of the board members comments on some aspect of the district and/or time of year that they have found to be good. Congratulations, and exhortations for achievement and success are always mentioned. Tonight, the recent world events were mentioned and how important our job is educating children in this day and age.

Dr. Perll recognized the following donations to the district:

Per Board Policy KH: All gifts accepted will be reported to the Board of Education, publicly announced and appropriately acknowledged. The donor will be officially thanked in the district's name.

John and Wanda Pratt donated $300.00 to the Betty Baker Scholarship Fund.

James Baker donated $500.00 to the Betty Baker Scholarship Fund.

Berry and Jo Ann Azdell donated $50.00 to the Betty Baker Scholarship Fund.

Anne Baker donated $250.00 to the Betty Baker Scholarship Fund.

Consent Agenda was approved.

Minutes - October 20, 2015 Regular Session

Reading of Bills (except agenda item 6)

Declare Items No Longer Needed For Educational Purposes

Bills - See Itemized List - approved (remember there are sometimes bills that one or more board members must abstain from the vote)

Reports & Presentations

--Each of the building administrators prepares a written report for the board. These can be viewed in the board agenda at the link above.

--Construction Report is also a written report available in the agenda

Attendance Report for the month of October showed 95.18% ADA and 87.73% MSIP (90/90).

--Parent Teacher Conference Report showed attendance overall for the district at 84% “in person” conferences.

--Special Education Report - Mrs. Schmidt gives an annual written report on the status of Special Education in the district.

--MSTA/MNEA Staff Count - this count is given annually to the board as in informational item.

Unfinished Business

--Tuition Reimbursement - board approved the proposed tuition reimbursement policy. The first semester of eligible coursework will be the coming Jan 2016 semester. Reimbursement will not be made for courses in administration. Emphasis on MA, SC, SS and ELA along with Reading is desired. But other areas will be considered. Prior superintendent approval is required. Reimbursement will happen after transcripts/grades have been submitted. A “B” or better is required.

--Investment of Scholarship Money - board approved moving the district's scholarship monies to the Mexico Area Community Foundation, pending a judge's/legal approval of the move. The district is very limited in investments by statute and at current rates, and cannot earn sufficient interest to support most of the smaller scholarships. The MACF, while still being conservative in investments, will be able to earn more interest. No changes will be made to any scholarships or procedures currently in place.

New Business

--Treasurer's Report was approved. Balance percentage for October is 17%. This represents approximately 3.8 million dollars, which sounds like a lot until one considers we spend about 1.5 million a month to operate the district. Our low balance point is always in December before we get local taxes from the county.

--Progress Mexico - the board voted to remain a member of Progress Mexico. Progress Mexico is an arm of the Chamber that focuses on bringing new business and people to Mexico and Audrain County.

--2015C Policy Updates - First Reading - a variety of policies are being updated by the Missouri School Boards Association. Second reading/ approval, will be considered next month.

--RFP - Copiers - copier bid for 11 machines was awarded to ImageQuest, A Xerox Company. These will be installed over Christmas break and replace the oldest machines in the district, the Ricoh machines.

--2014-2015 Audit - audit document was presented to board. Auditor will be here in December. Audit was excellent. The only finding is one knowns as “segregation of duties.” This finding is present every year and essentially means we do not have enough personnel to totally and completely separate all aspects of business office function to eliminate the possibility of fraud.

--2016-2017 School Calendar - proposed similar to this year's calendar was approved by the board. We will get a draft out to you ASAP. You can see it in the board agenda.

--Track - Dr. Rice is proposing to name the track for long-time coach Ron Whittaker.

Christmas Reception/Pioneer Awards (Tuesday, December 15, 2015 3:30 - 5:30 pm, 4:30 pm Pioneer Awards) 6:00 pm Board Meeting

Board Candidate Filing (December 15, 2015 - January 19, 2016)

Next Month's Agenda - presented as information only.

Adjournment to Executive Session - the board discussed personnel in closed session. No action was taken.

FREE Technology Nights @ Hart Career Center

FREE Technology Night on Monday, November 23 from 6-8 pm at the Hart Career Center in the basement. If you (or someone you know) are needing a personal tutor to help you navigate the web or use your electronic device, laptop, ipad or phone, you will want to come to this event! Offered by Future Business Leaders of America in Mexico, Missouri. Please contact Sarah Gooch if interested or call Hart Career Center 573-581-5684. Leave your name and what information you would like to learn. One of our friendly business students will help you!!

The Next Step will not meet Thanksgiving week.

The Next Step Program will not meet the week of Thanksgiving. There will be no students/teachers November 23rd or November 24th.

All-District Clarinet awards go to Grace Troesser.

District Band Auditions were held at Moberly High School on Saturday. There were over 400 students auditioning for a spots in one of two bands (All-District or Honorable Mention), from all over Northeast Missouri. Only about 130 students were selected overall.

Mexico High School Band student Grace Troesser was selected ALL-DISTRICT clarinet, and will audition for ALL-STATE honors in Columbia on December 6.

Mexico School District Elementary Students are invited to participate in GO!St. Louis Read, Right and Run program.

Mexico School District Elementary Students are invited to participate in GO!St. Louis Read, Right and Run program.

This program combines three components of education, community service and wellness to give students a fun and challenging way to accomplish a goal.

In this program students are to:

READ 26 books

RIGHT the community by doing 26 good deeds/acts of service

RUN 26.2 miles individually to add up to a full marathon by April 9, 2016

Students who wish to participate will have to pay a fee of $8 and will receive a journal to keep track of all books, good deeds and miles ran.

The final event of the program is a marathon (run their last 1.2 miles) on April 9, 2016 in St. Louis.(transportation will be provided). Students will receive a t-shirt for this event.

Students have until April 9th to complete their goals.

Registration is due by December 11th, 2015

Information/registration forms will be sent home with students. For information, please call any of the elementary schools or email: McMillan families contact mloyd@mexico.k12.mo.us, Eugene Field Families contact kdukes@mexico.k12.mo.us, Hawthorne Families contact kcostley@mexico.k12.mo.us.

Adopt-A-Child for Christmas

The Help Center will be accepting applications for the Adopt a Child Christmas program. The Help Center is open Monday thru Friday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. The children being adopted are birth to fourteen. Families need to live in Audrain County. Applications will be accepted until November 25th, at 4 p.m.

CPR for MPS Staff

Monday, Dec. 7th, 5-7pm

Mexico Middle School

If you would like to enroll in the Staff CPR class, please contact Angie Anderson. aanderson@mexico.k12.mo.us
Instructional Technology Blog

Click here for Casey Echelmeier's Blog.

Instructional Resources

Gina Gilman, Sue Nixon, Elaine Hansett and Casey Echelmeier compiled this information for everyone to use. Click the above link to connect to their site.

K-5 Math Help

Click the above link to get to the short article about ConnectEd and Everyday Math resources. Information is also on each Elementary School's page on the link called "Classroom Pages"

Mexico School District 59 ended the United Way drive with 59% of the goal of $7400 by raising $4,339.23.

Support your Mexico Bulldogs wrestling team by ordering team clothing.

Wrestling t-shirt order forms are now available! Support your Mexico Bulldogs wrestling team by ordering team clothing. Orders are due by this Friday (which is pay day!) This year, we have a few new options to add to the order form:

- You can order everything online now. It is super simple. Just click the link here.

midmoshirtshack.com Go to SHOP, then click MEXICO

- We have added a polo shirt this year, so for those of you looking for professional dress, the polo option may be for you!

Click here for the order form.

This year will also be the first year we make the "argyle" pattern available for purchase. For the last few years, the pattern has been exclusive for just wrestlers and coaches.

Thanks for your continued support. We hope to see you all out in Gooch Gym on Jan. 21st for our first Varsity triangular against Fulton and St. Charles West. Keep your ears open for our Teacher Appreciation Night as well!


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Family Fun Night at the YMCA

Sunday, Jan. 3rd 2016 at 6-8pm

1127 Adams Street

Mexico, MO

Staff and their families are encouraged to come play games, snack and fellowship. Volleyball, pickle ball, ping pong, swimming pool, and racquetball.
MHS Growl is now online

There are several featured pages on the Growl website. Be sure to check it out each week. They publish a new edition each Friday.

Mexico School District 59 Position Openings 2015-2016


Part-Time Evening welding

Speech Pathologist/Assistant (4)



Food Service Worker

Bus Drivers & Substitute Bus Drivers

Substitute Food Service Workers, Nurses, and Teachers

The following coaching/extra-duty positions are available for the 2015-2016 school year. Please contact Jeff Anderson x3008 at Mexico High School for additional information.


Assistant Track Coach - MHS


Click here to view the school district's calendar via Google Calendar.

Click here for MPS Lunch Menus

This is a link to the District website to find clickable lunch menus. This will save an email from coming to your inbox from Food Service each week. To locate them, go to "Related Documents" on the right side navigation.

Bulldog Bytes

Bulldog Bytes will be available in your in box each Wednesday (with some exceptions around Thanksgiving, Christmas, & Summer break). Send items to be published to jdiffenderfer@mexico.k12.mo.us. These items can be wedding photos, birth announcements/photos, fund raisers for sports and civic clubs, and other district wide communication needs.