ENG 2023-24 Family Update No. 8
November 15, 2023
2023-24 Family Update No. 8 | Nov. 15, 2023
⏰ Reading time: Four minutes, 28 seconds
💭 Superintendent's Message
Dear Northfield School District Families:
We have completed the first quarter of the school year. You will (or have already) receive(d) information from your child’s school about when report cards will be available. End-of-quarter grades are one way that we report your student’s academic progress.
Last Saturday our School Board and District Youth Council (DYC) gathered for a brunch event. During the event, board members and DYC representatives got to know each other, shared a meal, and discussed critical issues facing the district. These gatherings give board members insight into our student leaders’ perspectives. They also give DYC representatives the chance to learn about the board, what goes into its decision-making, and about representative government in general.
In Northfield, we have prioritized giving students a voice:
More than 80 Northfield High School students serve on over 30 boards and commissions in Northfield.
The “Youth on Boards” program provides students with “real world” experience for students in community decision-making.
It benefits our community by formally providing teenagers a voice in local decisions.
In 2019, the program was awarded the prestigious Local Government Innovation Award by the University of Minnesota’s Humphrey School of Public Affairs.
Our district’s vision statement is “We prepare every student for lifelong success by developing critical thinkers who are curious and ready to engage in our society.” The Youth on Boards program is one way that we aim to fulfill that vision.
As always, please contact me with any feedback about our district. Thank you for your continued support and partnership!
Matt Hillmann, Ed.D.
firstname.lastname@example.org | 507-663-0629
🗓️ Superintendent/Community Meetings
Several times per year, I invite parents/caregivers, district residents, and business and property owners to schedule meetings about any district-related topic they would like to discuss with me. Here are details about an upcoming opportunity:
Nov. 29, 2023
1 pm — 4 pm
Meetings are held in my office.
Email Anita Aase at email@example.com to schedule a 15-minute or 30-minute time slot.
Please note: I am always willing to have meetings with members of our school community. These events are intended to provide an explicit invitation to a wider community audience.
💡 Student spotlight
Congratulations to the four NHS student-athletes who signed their National Letters of Intent to participate in college athletics:
Ayla Puppe, hockey at the University of Minnesota
Austin Koep, baseball at St. Cloud State
Emerson Garlie, golf at Minnesota State University, Mankato
Grace McCoshen, hockey at Ohio State
We are proud of these student-athletes' accomplishments and look forward to following their NCAA careers!
Veterans Day Celebrations
📊 SSIS Screener Results
Students in Grades 3-12 recently took the social skills improvement system (SSIS) survey. The SSIS provides the district with information about students’ social and emotional development and how it may impact their behavior in both positive and adverse ways. This year’s results show gains in three vital indicators.
Why is it important?
Students' social and emotional skills impact their academic achievement. Information about how students view their social and emotional skills allows our schools to know the range of our students’ skills.
The information identifies what areas require focus to help students be their best.
How does it work?
Students complete an online survey, self-reporting their social and emotional skill levels.
97% of elementary students and 87% of middle and high school students participated.
Parents were given an opportunity to opt out of the survey.
What are the results?
88% of participants reported they have well-developed social emotional skills. These include relationship skills, responsible decision-making, self-awareness, self-management, and social awareness. This indicator improved two percent over the 2022 results.
85% of participants reported no externalizing concerns. These concerns are negative emotions and behavior primarily directed toward others involving verbal or physical aggression, poor control of temper, arguing, or actively excluding others. This indicator improved by one percent over the 2022 results.
83% of participants reported no internalizing concerns. These concerns are negative emotions and behavior directed inwardly involving feeling anxious, sad, or lonely; exhibiting poor self-esteem; lack of interest or limited engagement with others. This indicator improved three percent over the 2022 results.
Who can I contact if my student needs help?
Elementary families can contact their school’s behavior coach.
Middle school, high school, or ALC families can contact their child’s school counselor.
💬 High School tours and facility discussion
The Northfield School District Board of Education is beginning discussions about a potential November 2024 bond referendum election to address the deficiencies of our current high school facility.
The first board work session about this topic is on Nov. 16. The first high school tour is on Nov. 18. On Dec. 9, there will be a free bus trip to see the new Owatonna High School that opened this fall. Two buses are available to transport interested residents and will leave from Northfield High School's Door No. 1 at 12:15 pm. Another high school tour, originally scheduled for Dec. 9 has been rescheduled for Dec. 12 from 6—8 pm.
You can learn more about the upcoming process here.
🪧 Nov. 13, 2023 School Board Update
The school board held a regular meeting on Nov. 13.
The school board also held the annual required hearing on the district's World's Best Workforce Plan.
Board packets, table files, and meeting videos are located on our website.
You can listen to Board Chair Claudia Gonzalez-George’s recap on KYMN radio.
The Morning Show - Northfield School Board Chair Claudia Gonzalez-George, 11-14-23
Northfield School Board Chair Claudia Gonzalez-George discusses the November 13 Board meeting. Topics include the World's Best Workforce Plan, Early Learning and Adult Basic Education programs, approval of staff for newly arrived English Learners and more.
📣 Black and Brown Futures Meeting
Black and Brown Futures is a monthly gathering for families with Black and Brown Children. This group's next meeting is on Dec. 12. Learn more here. (Please note that this is an independent parent group not officially affiliated with Northfield Public Schools.)