Superintendent's Newsletter

March 2017

Stronger Everyday

Incredible things are happening in our district! As you prepare to attend Parent Teacher conferences please be sure to ask your child’s teacher about the amazing learning experiences that your child is involved in. As you know we have been focusing on the 4Cs of 21st Century Learning including communication, collaboration, critical thinking and creativity. Teachers have been learning about each of these important skills and how best to incorporate them in their teaching and student learning. As you have conversations with your child, review their school work, and talk with teachers, you will see evidence of the 4Cs in your child’s daily experience. As faculty, staff and administrators we are deeply committed to our own on-going learning in order to support our students’ growth and development. Our professional learning happens daily in grade level and department meetings, professional learning communities (PLCs), the supervision and evaluation process, formal professional development days (early release and full-day meetings), and consistent collegial conversations. For an example the adult learning that happens on Professional Development days click here.

One of the measures of our success, and the success of other schools around the country and the world, is our performance on various assessments. These are an important measure of our success as well as our growth over time. Your child’s report card and progress report as well as information from his or her teachers will give you individualized information on their growth over time as well as their progress towards our district-wide learning targets.

There are other areas that are not measured by an assessment and for which there is no standardized measure and many of these areas are ones that can’t be traditionally taught. Our district is unique in the 4Cs of commitment, compassion, curiosity and core ethical values. We are extraordinarily proud of our school community.

Budget Update

Budget discussions are on-going and will continue throughout the month of March when the Board of Education finalizes their decision to adopt the budget and move it to the Public Hearing on April 5th. The current budget proposal represents a 3.43% increase over the current year’s budget. This represents a $894,678 increase or a 2.44% increase in expenditures, $719, 422 of which are costs associated with salaries and benefits. Our projected revenue for next year is $301,553 less than our current year. Our focus continues to be on making progress in the areas of student achievement, well-being and engagement. Amidst the challenges of the local and state budget we have worked as a school team to responsibly make decisions to continue our progress as a district as we focus on these priorities. I am confident that if we follow our improvement plan we will grow stronger every day. Key features in next year’s budget proposal include expansion of Pre-K programming, the gradual development of a career center at CRHS, an additional math interventionist at the elementary level, increased technology support for IT, adherence to Board recommended class sizes, necessary instructional materials, and high level professional development.

John Lyman School Earns Energy Star Award

The John Lyman School earned an ENERGY STAR certification for excellent energy performance and was recognized in a ceremony at the school on March 13th. ENERGY STAR certified buildings meet strict energy performance standards set by EPA. They use less energy, are less expensive to operate, and cause fewer greenhouse gas emissions than their peers. John Lyman received a score of 90 which means that it is in the top 10% of energy performing schools in the country.

Staffing Changes

Our Athletic Director, Mr. Nick Barbieri, has decided to move from the position he has held for 4 years to the classroom. Mr. Barbieri has done so much to advance our athletic, physical education and health programming. Of his many accomplishments he has been instrumental in creating the Unified Sports program at our high school which pairs students with special needs with their typical peers in order to compete with other schools with similar teams. Mr. Barbieri is the coordinator of this program for the Shoreline Conference. This is just one example of his dedication to student athletes in RSD 13. Mr. Barbieri will assume a Physical Education position in one of our schools next year.

Dr. Berry, Director of Curriculum, Assessment and Instruction will be moving on to another experience at the end of the 2016-2017 school year. Dr. Berry has worked in RSD 13 for 7 years and has been instrumental in improvements in teaching and learning across the district. She has helped us make strides in professional development, organization and understanding of student performance data, implementation of the teacher evaluation system among many other advances in curriculum, instruction and assessment. We wish Dr. Berry well in her future endeavors.

Interviews for both positions will be held in the next few months.

Last Day of School

As of March 20, 2017 the last day of school will be Tuesday, June 20th.