The G.W. Gazette

April 2021 Edition


Spring has sprung and along with it all of the new growth nature has to offer. The days are now longer, the sun has been shining more and the temperatures have been overall much warmer. I have noticed daffodils blooming and very soon tulips will follow. While outside is showing new growth so are our students inside growing in their knowledge.

Last year at this time, we were not able to hold face to face learning because of COVID. Data has shown there is about a 10% drop in skills across the board with students this school year in all of Iowa. While there may be a slight dip, we are seeing some tremendous growth in our summative assessments such as FAST testing and MAP testing. Soon our students will be taking the ISASP, which is a standardized test given to every student in Iowa. It is a standards based assessment that provides schools and the Iowa Department of Education with data on proficiency toward the core standards. Per the Every Student Succeeds Act, or ESSA, every school in Iowa receives a "rating" on how their students are performing against other districts. Subgroups such as socioeconomic status, ethnicity, gender, IEP/504, and free or reduced lunch are taken into account for proficiency. Essentially, this data helps our school to know the impact of instruction and interventions on every diverse learner. This helps us prioritize skills and support learners where they may struggle.

Our teachers have been having students take the practice tests so they are familiar with what to do during the live testing time.

Here are some ways you can help your student be most successful:

1) Talk to them about the importance of trying their very best on the test.

2) Make sure they get plenty of sleep the night before each test day.

3) Have them eat a good breakfast. (We still have free breakfast for every student at school.)

4) Remind them to take their time and try their best. The tests are not timed and it's not a race against your friends to finish but a competition with yourself to show off what you know!

5) Ask your child each day how they felt the test went. Studies show students are more engaged in school when their parents show interest.

Below you will find the dates we will be taking tests. I ask that you make every effort to have your child in attendance on testing days. Testing is mandatory and we expect 100% of our students to take each test. If for some reason your student is not able to be at school the day of testing, please notify the school immediately so a make-up time can be scheduled. Also, our PTO provides snacks and mints each day during testing.

Thank you in advance for helping our students show all they know and how much their knowledge has grown. We will also be taking the spring and final FAST and MAP tests of the year soon.

Wishing you a great month,

Mrs. Heather Davis


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Students will be taking ISASP tests on the following days:

  • April 13 - Reading
  • April 15 - Math
  • April 20 - Language/Writing
  • April 22 - Science (5th grade only)

Note: Online students MUST come in to the school during the designated time to test as scheduled with your teacher.

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Note: This event was rescheduled from November and we are excited to host this wonderful author!

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Tuesday, April 6 - 5:15 at GW or online

Click this link to join the virtual meeting!


For our students' safety, we have added a new gate along the Blondeau Street side of our playground. This is to alleviate the morning arrival congestion on Concert and 9th Streets. It is also to help with students crossing the street in a busy area. I want to thank all of you for using this new entrance as it has helped immensely!

For dismissal, parents walking up to get their children should be at the Concert Street gate at 3:00 T-F, and 12:30 M, where your child will be checked out by a staff member. Car line parents will line up along the Blondeau Street and proceed around to the gate at 9th Street where staff will announce your arrival to pick up your student. Those in the carline, please be aware of parked cars and do not block them in, especially between 7th and 8th streets along Blondeau.

Cars should stay clear of 8th Street and the main entrance area as that is where our handicapped buses and parents are picking up students after school. Our entire dismissal process takes about 15 minutes for over 200 students. Your help in making this go smoothly and safely for our students is so appreciated!

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From Mr. Coovert...

Our students continue to use Close Gap each day to check in with how they are feeling. They indicate if they would like to speak to an adult, if they are tired, or if they are fully energized and ready to go for the day. This program has been a great addition to our Social Emotional Awareness education and gives our students a confidential voice if they need help.

I continue to use the Second Step curriculum in each classroom with lessons that help students understand emotions in themselves and others. This curriculum has been approved by the state of Iowa for Social Emotional Learning (SEL) in schools. As always, please feel free to reach out to me anytime if needed. I am always here to answer questions or help in any way I can.



Alex Coovert

GW School Counselor

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On April 15, staff & students will wear purple to celebrate and recognize all children who have parents and family members serving in the military. We are grateful for your service!

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April 2...Autism Awareness Day

April 2...Paraeducator Appreciation Day

April 4....Easter

April 4-19...National Library Week

April 5....School Resumes

April 5....Yearbook Orders are due

April 6....PTO meeting

April 8....Jason Reynolds virtual visit

April 9....PBIS Awards Assembly

April 13....ISASP - Reading

April 15....ISASP - Math

April 15....Purple up Day for Military Kids

April 20....ISASP - Language/Writing

April 22....ISASP - Science (5th grade only)

April 22....Earth Day

April 22-23...PBIS Fun Days

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George Washington Elementary

Heather S. Davis, Principal

Every Student...Every Day ~ Building Tomorrow's Chiefs!