Myers-Wilkins Wolf Tracks

Back to School Edition 2017 - Issue 1


Welcome back!!! It is nearing the end of summer and time for school to start. We are extremely excited to welcome back your child(ren). We hope you have had the opportunity to enjoy the summer and spend some quality time together. This is an exciting time of the year for students and staff. A new year is a new beginning. We are committed to providing you and your family the best schooling experience possible.

We ended the year on a high note. Leadership Duluth was able to fundraise a t-shirt for every child with our new school logo that was voted on by our students. We want to thank them for all the work they did in creating a new logo and fundraising. A special shout out to Michael Smisek from Sek Design, who spent countless hours creating our logo and making it come to life by painting a giant display of our new wolf. The beautiful new logo is displayed in our front entryway for all to see as they walk into our building.

As many of you know, last year was my first year here at MW. I learned so much about the students, staff, school, community, and families. I look forward to continuing our journey together. It is imperative that I foster a relationship with each and everyone of you so that we can ensure your child's success. As always, please do not hesitate to contact me in any way if you have a question, concern or would like to have a conversation about how we can support your child.

Each new year brings changes. This year is no different. We have many staff changes going into the 2017-2018 school year. Here is our teacher line up...(anyone who is underlined has a new grade level or position and anyone who has an asterick is a new staff to our building)...

K - Gayle Daniel, Holly Johnson*

1st - Marie Riesland, TBD*, Heather Andrys

2nd - Michelle Bowker, Susie Chapman, Karen Tokarczyk

3rd - Lisa Bergman, Angela Radzak, Amy Bodin

4th - James Olson, Lisa Larson, Maribel Mehling

5th - Jennifer Boyson, Andrea Rosenberg, TBD*

New SPED Teachers - Tia Nelson* DCD Teacher, Tina Larson* ASD Teacher, Anita Akuamoah-Boateng* EBD Teacher, Callie TInsley* LD Teacher

Dean - Joanna Walters*

Additional Social Worker - Amanda Borling*

Physical Therapist/Physical Therapist Assistant - Roni Rodd*, Dawn Olson*

Occupation Therapist - Danielle Seitz*

Art Teacher - Gabrielle Gerster*

Social Emotional Learning Teacher - Elizabeth Backzkiewicz*

Please help me in welcoming our new wolves to the wolf pack. We are excited to add them to our team. All of these individuals bring unique strengths and experiences that will be a great asset to Myers-Wilkins.

Event dates are attached to the school calendar in this packet and online on our website.

I hope your child(ren) enjoy the rest of their summer break and we look forward to seeing everyone at open house and throughout the year.

Go Wolves! Paw Pride!

Elisa Maldonado

Open House

Come on out and meet your child's teacher on Thursday, August 31st from 4:00-5:30 p.m. This is your chance to bring school supplies, check out your child's classroom, ask questions and socialize. We will be providing a refreshing ice cream treat as well in the cafeteria. There will be various tables with information such as KeyZone, Together for Health, and Duluth Community School Collaborative. We can't wait to see your family!!!

Student Classroom Assignments and Transportation Routes

Enclosed in this packet is your child's classroom assignment and transportation route information. If you have moved over the summer, please call 218.336.8860 and be sure we have your correct address. Please note that the first couple days of school, the buses do run late as the bus drivers are learning their routes and want to be sure all students are picked up and dropped off at the correct stops. The district transportation phone number is 218.336.8970. Any transition route change will take up to two days to process.

Parent Student Advisory Council

Myers-Wilkins has a very active and inclusive parent group. PSAC is a formal organization composed of parents/guardian, teachers and staff that is intended to facilitate parental participation in our school. Our meeting will be the 2nd Tuesday of each month from 5:00-6:30. We are always looking for new members to be a part of our group. Any and all are welcome to be a part of it. Our first PSAC meeting will be Tuesday September 12th 5:00-6:30 pm. Childcare is provided if you need it and a dinner provided after the meeting.

Attendance Matters!!!!!

It is important that your child come to school everyday. We promptly begin the day with free breakfast at 7:25 a.m. Students are to be in class by 7:45 a.m. If for any reason your child will be absent from school. please call the attendance line at 218.336.8860 Option 1.

Your child's success starts with good attendance.

Myers-Wilkins Academics and Goals

We are extremely proud to inform you that we had an increase in our state test scores in reading and math. This is the highest we have scored in the past five years. We have made some curricular changes to improve our school academics.

We will continue to focus on our balanced literacy through the continuation of receiving coaching support for our teachers and doing regular walk-throughs to provide feedback and measure how we are doing. We have adopted two new intervention programs to help support our students who need an additional scoop of literacy supports. The programs are Leveled Literacy and PRESS which our Special Education Teachers and our Interventionist have been trained in.

In Math, we are beginning conversations as a leadership team to look at how we can improve our math instruction. Our conversations will include looking at an intervention program as well as looking at how we can improve math core instruction in the classroom.

Last year, we implemented WIN time, whatever I need in math and reading. These are half hour blocks where we provide your child additional challenge or support in the areas of reading and math.

Finally, as a building we decided to become a "mindful school." Our teachers are currently in the process of receiving professional development on mindfulness. This is something that we will be explicitly teaching our kids that helps them regulate their emotions and cope. We are lucky to be able to have a Social Emotional Teacher for the next three years that will be pushing into the classroom as a specialist. She will be teaching social emotional learning 30-45 minutes once a week. She will be teaching students mindfulness, responsive classroom, incorporating components from PBIS (Positive Behavior Intervention Systems), and teaching tolerance. Our hope is that through her work our students will learn the social emotional skills they need and can use in order to ultimately be academically successful.

We are excited about these programming changes and continuation of the work we have begun. With your continued support, we know that MW students can and will continue their growth towards academic success. Our students are brilliant and we want their brilliancy to shine.