Tustumena Newsletter

December 14, 2012

From the Prinicpal

Happy New Year!

Okay, I am a little early for New Year’s but this is the last newsletter until January 11th. There is a lot going on between now and then. Teachers are finishing the end of semester assessments so they can close their grade books before vacation. The report cards will be coming home on January 14th so if you have any questions about how your child is doing at school, please contact them or look on Power School.

As I mentioned last week, Santa will be in the area three times (four if you’re counting Christmas Eve) within the next couple of weeks. Saturday, December 15th at Rocky’s Café from 11-1, Thursday, December 20th during our reindeer games, and Friday, December 21st from 5-7 at Tustumena Elementary (Santa Claus is coming to Kasilof). So he and his elves are in high gear.

On Friday December 21st, even though the kids will be home, teachers will be at work with me. Our agenda will be:

· Matching assessments to grade level standards

· Improving questioning skills to build student collaboration

· Using formative assessments to enhance instruction

· We will also be using out lunch time to celebrate the season and each other

In January, I will have more information to share with you about the Soldotna Area Schools configuration discussions that will be taking place. For now, there is a meeting scheduled to collect input from teachers and community leaders. That input will influence any outcomes or recommendations from our school district to the School Board.

I will also have more information about the Boys and Girls Club programs that will be offered in the spring and in the fall. Michele Hayman, (yep, my wife) is our new Kasilof Boys and Girls Club site manager.

Teacher In-Service coming up

What the teachers do when the kids are away.

  • Our teachers will be refining their skills next Friday. We will be working on:
  • Matching assessments to standards
  • Improving questioning skills to improve student collaboration
  • Using formative assessments to enhance instruction
  • (And we will have a little time for a potluck and a few holiday laughs)

A Look Ahead:

December 21-January 6th- Winter Break

January 14th - Report Cards come home

January 15th- PTO Meeting 4pm

January 15-17, Lynx Tracks Activity to Ice Skating

January 21- Vacation Day.

From KPBSD in regard to the tragedy in Connecticut

KPBSD Schools Communication

Soldotna, December 14, 2012—A tragic day in the United States is unfolding as the world learns of a school shooting and the death of children and educators at a Connecticut elementary school. The Kenai Peninsula Borough School District offers care and condolences to everyone affected in this tragedy. Our hearts ache with colleagues and school communities.

At 9:41 a.m. on Monday, December 17, 2012, the school district will pause for a minute of silence.

“I am shocked and saddened by today’s events in Connecticut. All of us at KPBSD offer our condolences to the victims and their loved ones. On Monday morning at 9:41 a.m., the district will pause for a moment of silence to remember the lost lives and to offer our thoughts and prayers to families and the greater Sandy Hook Elementary School community.” – Dr. Steve Atwater, KPBSD superintendent

School safety

“Families trust our schools to keep their children safe during the day. The reality is, however, that schools may be touched either directly or indirectly by a crisis at any time. Knowing what to do when faced with a crisis can mean the difference between calm and chaos, courage and fear, life and death” –KPBSD Emergency Action Plan

The safety of our students and staff is a top priority at each of our 43 schools. Every school year, at every school, several drills are practiced, including school lock-downs, hit-the-deck drills, and emergency actions and evacuations in the event of intruders, fire, earthquakes, or other unforeseen circumstances. District-wide procedures are in place and practiced regularly and in conjunction with local law enforcement through our KPBSD Emergency Action Plan.

Our schools are currently:

· In heightened awareness and paying extra attention to students, staff, and to any school visitors’ onsite.

· Suspending curriculum to offer support to students if necessary.

· Administrators and staff are offering a noticeable presence in the hallways.

· Continuing to work closely with local law enforcement.

Helpful Resources

A National Tragedy: Helping Children Cope, Tips for Parents and Teachers: http://bit.ly/NationalTragedyNASP

School Safety and Crisis Resources: http://bit.ly/NASPCrisisResources